Ray departs after three seasons as the Bulldogs coach, his first head coaching job. He accumulated a 37–60 overall record, including a 13–41 mark in the SEC.
After Ray's firing was announced, Bulldogs' four-star 2016 commit D'Marcus Simonds tweeted that he is reopening his recruitment due to his relationship with Ray and the coaching staff staff.
"This has been a difficult decision, as I have the utmost respect for Rick, and am highly appreciative of the effort he put forth in leading our basketball program," said Stricklin. "To Rick's credit, we have seen great strides from our student-athletes in several areas, including academics. However, the on-court results have not been satisfactory. In order for MSU to achieve success at the levels to which we aspire, I believe that a change is necessary at this time."
This season, Mississippi State went 13-19 and finished tied for 11th in the SEC.
Ray later released a statement via Instagram.
A photo posted by rickray01 (@rickray01) on
Stricklin said the search for a new coach will begin immediately.
- Molly Geary