Ravern Johnson scored 14 points and Jarvis Varnado had 12 points and 14 rebounds on Thursday night to lead Mississippi State to a 76-45 rout of cold-shooting DePaul in the SEC/Big East Invitational.
Returning to the St. Pete Times Forum, where they made an improbable run to the SEC Tournament championship last March, the Bulldogs (6-2) built a 20-point halftime lead and didn't allow the Blue Demons (5-3) to get any closer the rest of the way.
Romero Osby had 13 points, Barry Stewart scored 12 and Kodi Augustus contributed 11 for Mississippi State, which made 12 3-pointers en route to its third straight win.
DePaul shot less than 18 percent in the opening half and finished 18-for-64.
All three of DePaul's losses have come against SEC teams. Tennessee and Vanderbilt also defeated the Blue Demons, who went 0-18 in Big East regular-season play last year.