The way this season has gone so far, honestly, I would feel better if the Racers were playing Belmont tonight. It seems that the only way Murray State can win is if there is any sort of hype surrounding the game. The same team that beat Belmont, South Dakota State, and St. Johns can turn around and lose to UT Martin.
When a team dominates a conference for over twenty years, it paints a pretty big target on their backs. When a team from the OVC plays the Racers, its usually a revenge game and of course they bring their A-game.
Murray State has made a habit of letting their guard down against teams that should be an easy win. They start the game sluggish and dig themselves in hole, then spend the whole game trying to climb back. Sometimes they pull off the win, sometimes they don’t.
The Redhawks haven’t had any upset wins this year, but at the same time, they have had any bad losses. SEMO is a solid team. They have two playmakers in Tyler Stone and Nino Johnson, and they do many things well. But it’s almost like none of these things matter. With the way this season has gone, it doesn’t matter how teams play against Murray State, it’s the Racers that have beat themselves lately.
But let this game be different. It’s senior night. This is the last time Isaiah Canaan and Ed Daniel will play in the CFSB Center. I’ll wait a moment for that to sink in. Tonight is the last time you will see Sip cross someone over in the Bank and drain a long three in their face. Tonight is the last time you see Ed’s ‘fro fly through the air as he throws down a tomahawk jam to send the CFSB center into a screaming frenzy. It brings a tear to my eye.
The keys to success in this game are the same as always. Protect the ball, box out a rebound, create turnovers, and score in transition. The Racers know what it takes to win, they’ve shown that, they just have to execute every game. The difference is the intensity and passion that the Racers play with (or do not play with). I would like to see a change and see the Racers jump out to an early lead and continue to play with urgency till the final buzzer. I think Murray State has been over-confident at times and it has came back to bite them.
Its senior night, the Racers have to win. The last home game for arguably the greatest player to put on a Racer jersey. Canaan can’t go out with loss, that’s just not right. My prediction: Canaan lights it up for 30 and Murray State rolls into the postseason with a win. Go Racers!