Basketball Preview: Murray State - Belmont



Murray State Racers vs. Belmont Bruins

Site (Venue): Murray, Ky. (CFSB Center)
Date/Game Time: Thursday, Feb. 19, 2022/8 p.m.
Audio: WFGS Froggy 103.7FM (PxP: Neal Bradley Analyst: Kenny Roth)
TV(Live Streaming): ESPNU (Pxp: Robert Ford Analyst: Richie Schueler)(ESPN+)
Twitter In Game: @MSURacers
MUR Record (Streak): 26-2 (16-0 OVC) (Won 16)
BEL Record (Streak): 24-5 (14-2 OVC) (Won 10)
MUR Last Game: Won at UTM 62-60 (Feb. 19)
BEL Last Game: Won at home SIUE 73-62 (Feb. 19)
All-Time Series vs. BEL: Racers trail 10-12
First Meeting: 1986 Home Won 94-92
Last Meeting: Jan. 15, 2022 At Belmont, Racers won 82-60
Largest MSU Win: +39 1996 Home Won 84-45
Largest MSU Loss: -17 2007 in Chattanooga Lost 84-67
Last Five vs BEL: MSU 1-5
Next MSU Game: Feb. 26 at SEMO
Massey Ratings Prediction: Murray State 75 - Belmont 71 

In the first game this season in NCAA D-I there is a game with a combined 50 or more wins when the Murray State Racers (26-2, 16-0) host the Belmont Bruins (24-5, 14-2) Thursday at the CFSB Center in Murray, Kentucky. Tip time is set for 8 p.m. in a game nationally televised by ESPNU. The Racers have won 16 in a row and Belmont 10 as Ohio Valley Conference titans clash in one of the biggest games of the week in collegiate basketball. 

The game also marks the final regular season home game as the Racers honor their academic seniors before the game. Tevin Brown, Carter Collins, Jordan Skipper-Brown and KJ Williams will be on the floor pregame with their families as well as GA manager Jack Seltsam.

Rankings in Mind

The Racers are in their third week of being in the national top-25 as they moved from 21 to 19 in the Associated Press poll and remained 21 in the USA Today Coaches poll. Three consecutive weeks of being ranked marks just the second time since 1971 that the Racers have stayed in the national spotlight for more than one week. The 2011-12 MSU team that was the final undefeated team at 23-0 and played their final 23 games that season as a ranked team. In the NCAA Net Rankings, the Racers are 26th this week and Belmont is 55th. The Racers remained second in the Mid-Major Top-25, while Belmont is eighth this week. Belmont received five votes this week in the AP poll. 

Streaks On The Line - In The Making

The Racers have won their last 16 games since a loss to Auburn (Dec. 22).

The current run marks the longest win streak in Coach Matt McMahon's seven seasons at MSU. His previous best was 13 in a row in 2017-18. MSU is trying to become just the sixth team to run the table in the OVC and the first to do it with an 18-game schedule. With their 25th win, McMahon and his staff are the first in the history of the MSU program to have three seasons of 25 or more wins. The Racers were 26-6 in 2017-18 and 28-5 in 2018-19. At home, the Racers are 14-0 at the CFSB Center this season and have won their last 15 games at The Bank.

OVC Tournament Next Week

In a clash of OVC titans, the Racers vs Bruins rivalry has been going strong since Belmont joined the OVC in the 2012-13 season. Since then, the Racers and Bruins have met for the OVC Tournament title five times in nine years. In seven of nine years, either the Racers or Bruins have been in the championship game.

Undefeated OVC Season

With the against Belmont and Saturday at Southeast Missouri, the Racers have a chance to do something only five teams have ever done in OVC history and that is go undefeated. No team has ever done it in an 18-game OVC season. Here are the other instances including the last time it happened when Cameron Payne led the Racers to a 16-0 mark in the 2014-15 season. OVC undefeated league seasons: Western Kentucky (1949-50) 8-0, Western Kentucky (1965-66) 14-0, Western Kentucky (1969-70) 14-0, Austin Peay (2003-04) 16-0, Murray State (2014-15) 16-0

Racers Celebrate After Victory Over UTM

Murray State Up to #19 in AP POLL

Highlights: Murray State 91 - Austin Peay 56

Photos: Murray State - Austin Peay

Racers Move Up in AP Poll