#44 Mississippi State Women's Basketball 2021-2022 Preview

Mississippi State Bulldogs
Overall Rank: #44
Conference Rank: #9 SEC
 Mississippi State Logo
The Nikki McCray-Penson era got off to a good start. At one point Mississippi State was 8-2 and both of those losses came in overtime. The Bulldogs started to stumble after that during a start and stop February and finished the year with a disappointing 10-9 record. Three starters are back to form the nucleus of this year’s team, but Coach McCray-Penson has also brought in some high impact transfers who will take the Bulldogs back to relevance very quickly.
2020-21 Record: 10-9, 5-7
2020-21 Postseason: None
Coach: Nikki McCray-Penson
Coach Record: 10-9 at Mississippi State, 63-48 overall
Key Departed Players (starters in bold)
Aliyah Matharu, Guard, 10.2 ppg
Sidney Cooks, Forward/Center, 6.1 ppg
JaMya Mingo-Young, Guard, 5.6 ppg
Madison Hayes, Guard, 4.7 ppg
Yemiyah Morris, Guard, 3.2 ppg
Xaria Wiggins, Guard, 2.5 ppg
Key Returning Players (starters in bold)
Rickea Jackson, Junior, Forward, 14.9 ppg
Jessika Carter, Senior, Forward/Center, 14.3 ppg
Myah Taylor, Senior, Guard, 9.9 ppg
Caterrion Thompson, Senior, Guard, 2.1 ppg
Charlotte Kohl, Sophomore, Center, 0.8 ppg
KN’isha Godfrey, Freshman, Guard
Key New Players
Denae Carter, Freshman, Forward
Raven Farley, Senior, Forward, Transfer from St. John’s
Aislynn Hayes, Junior, Guard, Transfer from Middle Tennessee
Alasia Hayes, Sophomore, Guard, Transfer from Notre Dame
Anastasia Hayes, Senior, Guard, Transfer from Middle Tennessee
Ashley Jones, Junior, Guard, Transfer from Temple
JerKaila Jordan, Sophomore, Guard, Transfer from Tulane
Mia Moore, Freshman, Guard
Jasmine Shavers, Freshman, Guard
Rickea Jackson and Jessika Carter are back after leading the Bulldogs in scoring and rebounding. Jackson, a 6-2 forward led the way with 14.9 points per game and she is a threat to hit some mid-range jumpers and stretch the defense. Carter stays in the paint and led the squad with 8.7 rebounds and 1.4 blocks on top of her 14.3 points. Myah Taylor will again run the point after averaging 9.9 points and 4.1 assists last year. The Hayes sisters highlight an impressive group of transfers. Anastasia was the most productive of the bunch last season, averaging 26.5 points, 5.4 rebounds, 5.1 assists and 2.8 steals at Middle Tennessee. Aislynn was her teammate with the Blue Raiders and added 14.0 points, 6.2 rebounds and 3.5 assists. They will join Alasia who is transferring in from Notre Dame where she saw limited playing time as a freshman. Ashley Jones was the American Athletic Conference newcomer of the year in 2019-2020 when she averaged 16.0 points, 4.5 rebounds and 4.3 assists with Temple. Jerkaila Jordan started as a freshman at Tulane last season and tallied 16.7 points per game. The frontcourt will get some depth with Raven Farley, a starter at St. John’s who averaged 6.5 points and 5.4 rebounds last season. Add in some decent freshmen, including KN’isha Godfrey who played just four minutes last season, and Mississippi State is loaded with talent.
Projected Postseason Tournament: WNIT
By the Numbers:
Scoring Offense: 72.4 (52nd in nation, 8th in conference)
Scoring Defense: 67.6 (216, 8)
Field-Goal Percentage: 44.3 (40, 4)
Field-Goal Defense: 38.7 (102, 6)
Three-Point Field Goals Per Game:6.4 (125, 6)
Three-Point Field-Goal Percentage: 33.9 (71, 6)
Free-Throw Percentage: 62.0 (315, 14)
Rebound Margin: 0.7 (140, 9)
Assists Per Game: 14.8 (66, 3)
Turnovers Per Game: 14.4 (86, 5)
Madness 2022 WNBA Draft Rankings:
#6 Jessica Carter
#21 Anastasia Hayes
Madness 2021 Women’s Basketball Recruit Rankings:
#36 Knisha Godfrey
#70 Jasmine Shavers
#71 Mia Moore