CLEMSON MBB PREVIEW: vs Mississippi State

via Clemson Athletic Communications

• The Clemson Tigers open their season against Mississippi State in the 2020 Space Coast Challenge. Previously the Cancun Challenge, the Space Coast Challenge is hosted by Eastern Florida State College in Titan Field House.

• The contest will be televised on CBS Sports Network with Dave Ryan and Bob Wenzel calling the action, while Don Munson and Tim Bourret will call the action on the radio waves. The radio call will be available on the Clemson Tigers Network and

• Clemson is 3-1 all-time against Mississippi State. The Tigers fell to the Bulldogs in their last meeting during the 2018 Never Forget Tribute Classic, 82-71.

• Aamir Simms was named to the All-ACC Preseason First-Team, becoming Clemson’s first since 2016 and second since 2018 to earn preseason league honors.

• Simms was previously named to the Karl Malone Watch List (Top 20 PF in the country) and became the first Tiger to earn recognition from the Basketball Hall of Fame’s preseason award watch lists.

• Simms was named Third-Team All-ACC on March 9. It’s Simms’ first career ACC postseason accolade.

• Clemson boasted a Top-20 recruiting class in the country for 2020 with the additions of PJ Hall, Olivier-Maxence Prosper and Lynn Kidd. It marked the program’s highest recruiting ranking since 2009, according to 247Sports.

• Clemson was been bitten by the injury bug in 2019-20, having many key players miss time due to injuries, which included three starting players. For much of the season, Clemson had as few as eight scholarship players active. Clemson had players miss 75 games last season.

• Jonathan Baehre and Clyde Trapp are both healthy after overcoming torn ACL’s last year. Baehre re-tore his ACL in December 2019. Chase Hunter has overcome a foot injury that held him to just nine contests his freshman season.

• Nick Honor is eligible for the Tigers’ in the backcourt after previously sitting out the 2019-20 season due to NCAA transfer rules. Honor has three seasons of eligibility left after playing his freshman year at Fordham. Honor spent last season on Clemson’s scout team.

• Head Coach Brownell passed Cliff Ellis as the program’s all-time winningest coach. Coach Brownell was two wins shy of passing Ellis and the Tigers earned back-to-back victories at North Carolina and at home over No. 3 Duke. The win over North Carolina was the program’s first-ever in Chapel Hill.

The Tigers are ranked 40th currently in KenPom rankings and are given a 65% chance to beat the Bulldogs. The projected score is 71-67.

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