MURFREESBORO, Tenn. -- Shawn Jones scored four of his 22 points in overtime as Middle Tennessee opened its inaugural Conference USA season with an 89-84 victory Saturday night over Alabama-Birmingham.
Jones opened overtime with a dunk. UAB answered when Chad Frazier made a layup and a 3-pointer to put the Blazers ahead 82-79.
Middle Tennessee took an 84-82 lead when Neiko Hunter hit a 3-pointer and a layup with 2:40 remaining in overtime. The Blue Raiders then closed with a 5-2 run.
Middle Tennessee (11-5, 1-0) led 56-43 with 11:56 to play in the second half. UAB (11-4, 0-1) tied the game at 77 on a pair of Robert Williams' free throws with 35 seconds remaining.
Kerry Hammonds II missed a 3-point shot for Middle Tennessee with three seconds to play to send the game into overtime. He finished with five 3-pointers while scoring 17 points.
Frazier led UAB with 28 points.
Mississippi State freshman guard Malik Newman will withdraw from the NBA draft, but sources told ESPN he might explore other opportunities besides returning to Mississippi State.
Seton Hall sophomore Isaiah Whitehead will stay in the NBA draft and not return for his junior season.
Washington State's trio of Josh Hawkinson, Conor Clifford and Ike Iroegbu have withdrawn from the NBA draft and will play their senior season with the Cougars.
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