March 12, 2012
Stansbury talking NIT selection
It's only natural that there is some disappointment from Mississippi State's side Sunday when the NCAA Tournament selection show ended and their name had not been called.
After all, this was supposed to be the year the Bulldogs basketball team got back to the Big Dance loaded with a ton of talent and ranked in the Top 25 for most of the season. But six losses down the stretch earned MSU only a NIT bid.
"There is no one to blame but us," said MSU head coach Rick Stansbury. "We had our opportunities. Most of the time this time of the year you're trying to play your way in and we basically played our way out. We had a bad two-and-a-half week stretch and lose five in a row, and, again, had plenty of opportunities in all those games to close it out. And then we don't close it out against Georgia down there. That's the toughest thing. There have been times in the past you're really playing well down the stretch. Most of the time that's where we are and you're trying to play you're way in, but it's totally different this time. We basically played our way out."
Even after losing five of their last seven games to end the regular season and being ousted by 11th-seeded Georgia in the SEC Tournament in the first round, Stansbury and the Bulldogs remained hopeful and optimistic they would be selected among the field of 68 in the NCAA Tournament.
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