Tennessee State is not one of Murray State’s historic rivals, but over the last few seasons, an undeniable animosity has developed between these two teams. There is always a little extra pushing, shoving, and trash talking when these teams play. I’ve even seen a full-fledge fight a few years back when Murray State visited Tennessee State, and let’s not forget who ruined the Racers perfect season last year. Without a doubt, this game will be very competitive.
THE FOUR FACTORS
Because of the huge win against Belmont, it’s going to be easy for the Racers to let their guard down, which is something Murray State cannot afford to do. Tennessee State is a very experienced team with four seniors and six juniors, so they will play smart. If Murray State wants to tame the Tigers and send another team back to Nashville with a frown on their face, then they will need to follow two keys to success.
First, Murray State must attack the basket. This may sound strange knowing that their big men are strong, tall, and experienced, but they often get into foul trouble early. If the Racer guards attack and use their speed to their advantage, TSU’s powerful post players will sit most of the game in foul trouble allowing the Racers to take command.
Last, Murray State must limit the turnovers. This is something that has plagued the Racers for most of the season, but improved dramatically against Belmont. Tennessee State’s defense is as good as anyone’s in the conference and they have four players that average over ten points a game. If Murray turns the ball over, Tennessee State will make them pay on the other end.
Murray State is playing as well as they’ve played all season long, and with the huge win over Belmont, hopefully they have the confidence booster needed to make a run in the conference to end the season. Tennessee State will be a tough opponent though. In the end I predict the Racers keep rolling and take care of the Tigers. Go Racers.