The Bulldogs have been to the NCAA Tournament ten times, the first time in 1963 and the most recent being 2009. Three previous bids were turned down because of a state policy barring collegiate teams from playing in integrated events. The 1963 team, however, famously snuck out of the state in the dead of night to play.
Mississippi State's most successful coaches include Babe McCarthy, Richard Williams, and Rick Stansbury. Babe McCarthy's place in history includes taking his team to the 1963 NCAA Tournament under the cover of darkness despite the Mississippi Governor's court order restricting their participation.
National champion Conference regular season champion Conference regular season and conference tournament champion Division regular season champion Division regular season and conference tournament champion Conference tournament champion
As in all sports, Mississippi State'e primary rival is the University of Mississippi (Ole Miss). In basketball, Mississippi State leads the series over Ole Miss 140-106. Former MSU Head Coach Rick Stansbury is 21-8 vs the Rebels.
Jarvis Varnado, 2nd round, 2010 NBA draft. NCAA career record holder with 564 blocked shots. One of only two college players to have at least 1000 points, 1000 rebounds, and 500 blocked shots, the other being David Robinson.
25 teams participated in 1963 the NCAA Tournament. Mississippi State, Duke, Illinois, Colorado, Cincinnati, UCLA, and San Francisco received byes into the second round. In their second round game MSU was defeated by eventual NCAA Champion Loyola-Chicago by a score of 61-51. The Bulldogs subsequently defeated Bowling Green 65-60 in a consolation game to secure a third place finish in the Mideast Regional.