The Mississippi State men's and women's basketball teams officially open their 2013 basketball campaigns with the 2nd Annual Maroon Madness to be held downtown on Oct. 12 in conjunction with Pumpkinpalooza, the city's fall festival that features trick-or-treating, late-night shopping and dining and other action-packed events for the entire family. There will also be a Pumpkin Patch on Main Street featuring locally-grown pumpkins and mums that will be for sale.
This year, though, basketball has been added as MSU enters new eras with coaches Rick Ray and Vic Schaefer. A court will be constructed on the east end of Main Street in front of Sullivan's Office Supply, and Maroon Madness will begin around 6 p.m.
Both the men's and women's teams will unveil their new uniforms, while the night will also feature dunk and 3-point shooting contests as well as many other activities involving fans, players and coaches. The 45-minute event will conclude with an autograph session.
"This is a unique, exciting opportunity for our fans to come downtown and experience the new format with Maroon Madness," Ray said. "To be able to partner with PumpkinPalooza and have basketball at the same time is a win-win for everyone. I know our players are excited and this will be a great opportunity to mingle with our fans in a different environment."
While there is downtown parking, a free shuttle for all fans departing from Humphrey Coliseum will be available starting at 5 p.m.
In case of inclement weather, Maroon Madness will be moved indoors on the Mississippi State campus at Newell-Grissom, home of the MSU volleyball team, with a start time set for 5 p.m.
"Maroon Madness is a great opportunity for the people in our community to meet our players," Schaefer said. "It's going to be a lot of fun for us and our fans. We are looking forward to going out to Pumpkinpalooza and interacting with our fans and selling our program."