March 11, 2010

Varnado believes the Bulldogs have a shot

What are Mississippi State's chances of repeating as SEC Tournament Champions? Why not just ask the tournament most valuable player from a year ago?

Jarvis Varnado and the Bulldogs won't have quite as tough a task as last March having to win four games in four days. MSU received a first round bye after winning the SEC West and will open play in Nashville on Friday.

"Now it's just three (games)," Varnado said. "I think we'll be ready to go. Just the main thing is coming together as a team. I think it's wide open and we've got a good chance. We know what it's like to win four games in four days."

The Bulldogs received an automatic bid to the NCAA Tournament taking down Georgia, South Carolina, LSU and Tennessee in consecutive days. Varnado was named MVP of the SEC Tournament averaging 13.8 points, 8.8 rebounds and 5.5 blocks in Tampa.

"We were tired but we had a will to win," Varnado said. "We wanted to get to the tournament and it was wide open last year. After we beat LSU, who we lost to twice during the season, I said we might as well get this last one since we made it this far. We didn't need to come up short-handed. We sucked it up and played hard to win."

But much like last season, State needs to win the SEC Tournament to guarantee a spot in the Big Dance. The Bulldogs hope a deep run in the conference tournament will be enough to impress the selection committee.

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