Tigers Open Big 12 Play At Colorado

Marcus Denmon and the Tigers travel to Boulder on Saturday.

Marcus Denmon and the Tigers travel to Boulder on Saturday.

Jan. 6, 2011

Columbia, Mo. -

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#8 / #9 University of Missouri Tigers (14-1, 0-0 Big 12) vs.

University of Colorado Buffaloes (11-4, 0-0 Big 12)

Tip-Off: 12:47 p.m. CT

Arena: Coors Event Center (11,064)

Radio: Tiger Radio Network (Mike Kelly - Play by Play / Gary Link - Analyst)

TV: Big 12 Network (Dave Armstrong and Jon Sundvold)

Rankings: Mizzou 9/8; Colorado NR/NR in AP / USA Today Coaches Poll

Series: Missouri leads 98-52; In Boulder CU leads 34-29


Missouri: Mike Anderson (Tulsa `82); 191-88 overall (9th); 102-47 at Mizzou (5th)

Colorado: Tad Boyle (Kansas `85) 67-70 overall (5th); 11-4 at Colorado (1st)


For Openers...

> Missouri Basketball opens Big 12 Conference play on Saturday with a final trip to Boulder, Colo., to take on the Colorado Buffaloes ... Missouri has won eight consecutive in the series, but will face a new-look and much-improved Buffs squad under first year coach Tad Boyle.

> Mizzou will to continue its best start in over 20 years ... The Tigers finished non-conference play 14-1 and open Big 12 play on the road for the first time since 2008-09 ... MU is actually looking for its first win in a Big 12 opener on the road ... The Tigers are 0-4 in those games, falling at Nebraska in 2008-09, at Iowa State in 2003-04, at ISU in 1999-2000 and at Kansas State in 1997-98 ... Mizzou is 8-6 in Big 12-openers all-time.

> Missouri's 14-1 start is its best since the Tigers opened the 1989-90 campaign 21-1 ... It's also the best non-conference record in school history.

> The Tigers currently boast a nine-game winning streak, their longest of the season ... Mizzou has seven winning streaks of five or more games under Mike Anderson, including two other nine-game streaks, one coming last season and the first occurring in 2006-07 ... A 10th consecutive win would of course be the longest run under Anderson and be the longest at Mizzou since the team won 17 straight from the end of the 1990-91 season through the start of the 1991-92 campaign ... The 10 wins would also be the 13th longest winning streak in school history.

> Missouri's eight-game winning streak vs. Colorado equals the second longest in series history ... Missouri won 12 consecutive from 1979-84 and then eight consecutive from 1950-53 and once again from 1999-2003.

> Mizzou is trending upwards in most power rankings and that's due to the team's improved defense and scoring margin ... The Tigers have held their opponents to 35-percent shooting from the floor, 25-percent shooting from three-point range and an 81-to-137 assist/turnover ratio over the last seven games ... It's no surprise that Mizzou has won each game by double-figures and boasts a +28.1 scoring margin during that stretch, which includes wins over likely NCAA Tournament teams Illinois and Old Dominion.

> Missouri has always been one of the country's better passing teams under Mike Anderson and that trend is continuing once again in 2010-11 ... Mizzou dished a season high 33 assists in the Dec. 18 win over Central Arkansas, which ties for the second most in school history and the most in the Big 12 this year ... Missouri is averaging 21.0 dimes over its last seven outings and ranks #4 nationally at 18.7 assists per game.


Mizzou Quick Hitters

> Missouri opens league play on Saturday at Colorado ... The last time Missouri opened a conference season in Boulder was 1992-93 when Mizzou claimed a 91-87 victory.

> Missouri is 2-2 in league-openers under Mike Anderson, including a 74-68 win over #10 Kansas State last season in Columbia.

> Mizzou is back inside the Top 10, checking in at #8 in the Coaches Poll and #9 in the AP ... That equals Mizzou's highest ranking this year.

> The Tigers are looking to extend their season high nine-game winning streak and a 10th straight win would be the longest under Mike Anderson's watch ... Missouri hasn't won 10 consecutive games since a 15-game winning streak back during the 1993-94 campaign.

> Nine-game winning streaks are nothing new for Anderson ... The Tigers won nine straight last season and put together a 9-0 start to the 2006-07 campaign.

> Missouri had seven players reach double figures on Wednesday vs. North Alabama ... It's the second time Missouri has had seven players score 10+ points this year, including the win over Central Arkansas on Dec. 18 ... It's also the first time Missouri has had seven players reach double figures in the same game twice in the same season and just the fifth time it's happened in a game overall.

> Missouri is playing its second true road game of the year, but sixth game (overall) away from Mizzou Arena in 2010-11 ... The Tigers are 1-0 on the road following an 83-80 win at Oregon on Dec. 2 and the 4-1 record away from home through five games is the best at MU since 2001-02 ... A 5-1 mark would be the best since 1994-95.

> Missouri is 2-1 vs. teams currently in the Top 25 this week ... The Tigers fell to #13 Georgetown in overtime, but defeated #20 Illinois (75-64) and #22 Vanderbilt (85-82) in OT.

> Attendance has been up all season at Mizzou Arena, to the tune of 1,000 fans per game ... Last season through 10 home games Missouri averaged 8,001 fans ... In 2010-11 MU is averaging 9,014 fans per game, including a sellout vs. Old Dominion.

> Mizzou has been dominant at home over its last six games ... The Tigers have enjoyed 20-point second-half leads in each of those contests, including a school record 40 point lead (57-17) at the half vs. Northern Illinois.

> Missouri is once again one of the nation's highest scoring clubs, ranking #5 nationally at 86.4 points per game ... At home that number is up to 88.1 ppg.

> Mizzou is also #4 nationally in assists at 18.7 per game, so not only can the Tigers score in bunches, but they do it with great efficiency, recording dimes on 60 percent of their hoops.

> Mizzou has been very good in non-conference games under Anderson ... The Tigers are 54-14 (.794), including four NCAA Tournament wins, since his arrival before the 2006-07 season.

> In league games overall Anderson is a solid 35-29 overall, including a mark of 22-10 the last two seasons, which is the second best record in the Big 12 behind only Kansas, who is 29-3.

> Missouri is finding its offensive rhythm over the last nine games, shooting 50 percent from the floor, 40 percent from three-point range and 74 percent from the foul line ... Balance has been the operative word for MU, with five players averaging better than 10.6 points and seven averaging 8.8 or more.

> Missouri has been the ultimate team through 15 games ... The Tigers have had seven different players lead the team (or tie for the team lead) in scoring, six different players in rebounding, six in assists and seven in steals.

> Missouri has won in a variety of places this year ... The Tigers are 10-0 at home on the young season ... The Tigers also have four road/neutral wins this year ... The Tigers were just 2-3 in their first five games away from home last season and 3-2 in 2008-09.

> Mizzou Arena has been a terror dome for non-league opponents during the Mike Anderson era... In running their record to 50-0 (under Anderson), the Tigers are averaging a 26.8 ppg. margin of victory vs. non-conference foes at home, including quality wins over Arkansas, California, Davidson, Mississippi State, Murray State, Old Dominion, Oral Roberts, Oregon, Purdue and Vanderbilt.

> Overall Missouri owns a 57-game non-conference home court winning streak, which dates back to the 2005-06 campaign (pre-Mike Anderson era) ... That 56-game run is a school record, topping the 29 consecutive non-conference home wins from 1979-83 ... That streak ended with an overtime loss to Marquette ... Missouri's last non-conference loss at home came against Sam Houston State in the 2005-06 season opener.

> Missouri is forcing one turnover for nearly every three opponent possessions this year (302 opponent turnovers compared to 1162 opponent FG attempts).

> Last season Missouri led the nation by forcing turnovers on 30 percent of its opponent possessions.

> The Tigers have scored 353 points off of those 302 turnovers, a number that will increase as this new collection of players becomes more familiar with each other ... So far Missouri is averaging 23.5 ppg off of turnovers, including 41 points off turnovers vs. Central Arkansas.

> Bench production from the Tiger reserves is nothing new under Mike Anderson ... The Tigers ranked #2 nationally in bench scoring a season ago at 31.6 points per game and have averaged 27.2 points over Anderson's five years in Columbia!

> The Tigers are already averaging 26.6 ppg from their bench this season, including a season high 49 points vs. La Salle on Nov. 24 and 40 vs. North Alabama.

> Another critical stat for Missouri is field goal opportunities ... Missouri thrives on its defensive pressure creating extra scoring chances and so far this season Missouri has taken 120 more shots than its opponents and made 123 more buckets.

> It's early, but Missouri has been good at defending the rim though 15 games, averaging 5.5 swats a contest ... Laurence Bowers (31) and Ricardo Ratliffe (20) lead the way with a combined 51 total blocks ... Missouri had a season high nine blocks vs. UNA, just two behind the school record.

> Missouri has typically played some tough schedules over the years and that trend will continue in 2010-11 ... Mizzou will have 13 games against teams ranked / receiving votes in the Top 25 ... Included in that list are some impressive non-conference games vs. Old Dominion and Vanderbilt at home, neutral site games vs. #19 Illinois, #14 Georgetown, Wyoming and La Salle and a road game at Oregon.

> Goodman also put the Tigers in his Final Four in his early season projections.

> Sports Illustrated thought highly of Missouri's backcourt depth and pegged the MU guards #13 nationally as a position group.


Tiger Tidbits

#1 Flip Pressey, 5-10, 168 Pounds

> Nicknamed "Flip", but first name is Phil.

> Out for a couple weeks with a fractured right finger, which was suffered Dec. 19 during practice ... Inching closer to a return.

> Flip Pressey enters the Missouri program as the highest-ranked recruit of the Mike Anderson era, rated as high as #16 nationally by 2K Sports.

> The quick, explosive guard is a true point for the Fastest 40 Minutes in Basketball and brings a team-oriented approach to the lineup.

> Ranked among Big 12 leaders in both assists per game (4.1) and assist/turnover ratio (1.9).

> Has dished 27 assists over his last three games (9.0 apg), including a Mizzou Freshman Record 11 dimes vs. Central Arkansas on Dec. 18.

> Recorded his first career double-double in that game as well with a career high 15 points.

> Those 11 dimes are the most by a Big 12 player this season.

> Is the Big 12's #1 freshman in assists at 4.1 per game.

> Is the first Missouri freshman to record 7+ assists in three consecutive games and is the first Tiger to accomplish the feat since Anthony Peeler back in 1989-90.

> Pressey showed some moxie in the season-opener against Western Illinois, sinking two free throws with just 1:26 remaining and the Tigers up just 58-57 after forcing a WIU turnover.

> His older brother Matt Pressey is a junior on this year's club and his father, Paul Pressey, is currently an assistant coach for Byron Scott and the Cleveland Cavaliers.


 #2 Ricky Kreklow, 6-6, 195 Pounds

> Ricky Kreklow became the third consecutive Missouri Player of the Year to ink with the Tigers.

> Recorded his first career double-double in 20 minutes vs. North Alabama, scoring 10 points and grabbing 10 boards ... Added two steals and an assist.

> Scored a career high 11 points on 4-4 FGs and 3-3 treys vs. Central Arkansas on Dec. 18.

> Hit 3-of-4 three-pointers in wins over Wyoming and La Salle, including a then career-best 2-of-3 treys vs. La Salle in the first half.

> The talented newcomer is the son of current Missouri Volleyball head coach Wayne Kreklow and is a local product that grew up watching the Tigers.

> He was named the MVP of the Demetrius Johnson All-Star game in St. Louis this June after scoring 25 points on 9-of-13 shooting.


#3 Matt Pressey, 6-2, 185 Pounds

> Big 12 Rookie of the Week for Jan. 3 after averaging 16.5 points, 5.0 rebounds and 2.5 assists in a pair of Tiger wins.

> Has reached double figures in three consecutive games and is averaging 14.3 points, 4.7 rebounds on 67 percent shooting during that time.

> Scored a career high 18 points on 6-of-9 shooting vs. Northern Illinois en route to that honor ... Added five boards, three assists and a pair of dunks in the rout.

> Chipped in 15 points and five boards in the win over Old Dominion.

> The "Elmers Glue" of this year's club and is out of the same mold as a J.T. Tiller and Zaire Taylor with his blue-collar mentality.

> Has started six games this season, including four consecutive starts dating back to the Dec. 22 Braggin' Rights affair vs. Illinois.

> Is 35-of-64 from the floor over his last 10 games as well (.547).

> Came off the bench to score nine points and dish three assists vs. Georgetown and his first career double-figure scoring night came at Oregon on Dec. 2 with 10 points and two assists in 22 minutes.

> Was a junior college All-American at Navarro College last year, joining fellow Tiger Ricardo Ratliffe on that first team squad.

> His younger brother Phil Pressey is a freshman on this year's club and his father, Paul Pressey, is currently an assistant coach for Byron Scott and the Cleveland Cavaliers.


#10 Ricardo Ratliffe, 6-8, 240 Pounds

> Highly-coveted big man out of Central Florida College, that was twice named a first team NJCAA All-American.

> Has been named Big 12 Rookie of the Week twice this season.

> Leads the club in rebounding (6.9) and double-doubles (3) ... Was on a run of four consecutive double-figure rebounding games before being held to seven boards vs. Georgetown.

> His 14 boards vs. La Salle are the most since DeMarre Carroll grabbed 14 vs. Kansas State on Feb. 25, 2009.

> Third in the Big 12 in field goal percentage (.563) ... Third on the squad in scoring (11.4).

> Named to the Cancun Challenge All-Tournament team after averaging 11.0 points and 13.0 rebounds.

> One of only 13 players in NJCAA history to be named back-to-back first team All-American, which includes former UNLV standout Larry Johnson.

> Named the Big 12's Preseason Newcomer of the Year by the league coaches.

> Broke the Central Florida school record with 1,653 points over two seasons.

> Had his junior college jersey (#20) retired at the school's season-opener this year.


#11 Michael Dixon, 6-1, 180 Pounds

> Quietly vying for Top Big 12 point guard honors, ranking second in the league in steals per game (2.3), first in assist/turnover ratio (2.6), while ranking #4 in dimes (5.1) and #6 in free throw percentage (.827).

> Had 55 dimes all of last season, but has 66 in just 13 games played in 2010-11 and is averaging 5.5 assists in his last 11 contest.

> Ranked #19 nationally in steals per game and #30 in assist/turnover ratio.

> Scored a career high 18 points in the win over Old Dominion thanks to 5-of-7 shooting, 3-of-3 treys and 5-of-5 free throws.

> Great all-around effort in his return home to Kansas City vs. Georgetown, scoring a career-high tying 17 points to go with four assists and four steals.

> Father (Mike Sr.) left San Jose State as the school's all-time assist leader.

> Ripped a career high five steals vs. North Florida on Nov. 20.

> Returning sophomore that made eight starts as a rookie last year.

> Top returning assist man from last season with 55 dimes and just 32 turnovers.


 #12 Marcus Denmon, 6-3, 185 Pounds

> Tough, gritty guard that was a football standout in high school as a wide out and defensive back.

> Mid-Season Co-Big 12 Player of the Year from ESPN.com.

> Mid-Season Wooden Award member.

> Mid-Season Big 12 Player of the Year and All-American Candidate.

> Ranked #9 nationally in three-point percentage.

> Highest scoring Tiger guard through 15 games since Thomas Gardner (19.9) in 2005-06, but has taken 50 fewer shots than Gardner during that same time frame.

> Twice named Big 12 Player of the Week.

> Reached double figures in 12 consecutive games.

> Has 145 career three-pointers in his tenure, just one outside the Missouri all-time Top 10.

> Leads the team in scoring (17.2) and three-point field goal percentage (.506) ... Is second in the Big 12 Conference with his three-point accuracy (.500).

> Has hit 29 of his last 53 treys over the last 10 games and is 64-of-124 from the floor overall.

> Scored a career high 27 points on Nov. 30 vs. Georgetown on an efficient 10-of-12 shooting from the floor ... Hit 5-of-7 treys and 5-of-5 shots inside the arc ... Added six boards and two steals as well.

> Scored 19 second-half / overtime points in the win vs. Vanderbilt, including the game-winner with five seconds remaining.

> Poured in 24 points in just 24 minutes vs. Northern Illinois ... Hit 9-of-11 shots and 5-of-7 treys vs. the Huskies.

> Has 10 career 20-point efforts and Missouri is 9-1 in those games.

> Cancun Challenge MVP after averaging 15.0 points on 8-of-16 treys in two wins.

> Classroom Champion in the Big 12.

> Big 12 All-Reserve Team last year as a sophomore.

> Is back to full strength after suffering a knee injury as a freshman ... He fought through soreness in that knee for much of his sophomore campaign.


#21 Laurence Bowers, 6-8, 210 Pounds

> Averaging 14.3 points and 5.8 rebounds over his last six games.

> Is shooting 63 percent from the floor (35-of-56) and 80 percent from the foul line (16-of-20) during that stretch.

> Second in the Big 12 in shot-blocking at 2.1 per game.

> Would rank #4 in the Big 12 with 53.8 percent field goal shooting with enough attempts.

> Scored a season high 20 points on 8-of-9 FGs in the win over Central Arkansas.

> Outstanding game vs. Oral Roberts with 17 points, 6 boards and a career high five blocks.

> Has reached double figures in scoring 10 times.

> Has two double-doubles this season and five for his career, including 16 points and 11 boards vs. North Alabama.

> Seventh in school history with 92 career blocked shots and needs four more to pass Gary Leonard (1986-89) who had 95 in his career.

> Named to the Big 12's All-Reserve Team, but finished his sophomore year with six consecutive starts.

> Tore ligaments in his left wrist down the home stretch of the 2009-10 campaign, but is fully healthy ... He will wrap his wrist however as a precaution.

> Named Academic All-Big 12 last year, as well as All-Reserve.

> Was one of the Big 12's most improved players going from 3.2 ppg as a freshman to 10.2 points and 5.7 rebounds as a sophomore.


#23 Justin Safford, 6-9, 230 Pounds

> Is healthy after undergoing off-season ACL surgery ... Injured his knee on Feb. 24 vs. Colorado, but worked incredibly hard throughout his rehabilitation and is back to near full strength.

> Incredible run of nine consecutive Missouri points vs. Illinois on Dec. 22 ... Finished the game with 11 points, three boards and two assists in 16 minutes.

> Narrowly missed a double-double vs. North Alabama with 16 points, eight boards and three assists.

> Enjoyed an efficient day vs. Presbyterian, scoring a season-high 14 points on 6-of-9 shooting in 19 minutes ... Added six boards and a trey.

> Scored 11 points in the win vs. La Salle, including nine of the team's first 10 points ... Finished with six rebounds as well.

> Is the club's lone senior and enters his fourth year with the program, which includes 84 wins during that stretch.

> Averaged 8.6 points and 4.1 rebounds as a junior, but averaged 9.9 points in Big 12 play before his injury.

> Made a return to live action in the Black & Gold Game where he recorded a 15-point, 10-rebound double-double on 7-of-11 shooting.


#24 Kim English, 6-6, 200 Pounds

> Has reached double figures 11 times this season and in nine of his last 11 games.

> Scored 20 first-half points vs. North Alabama on 6-of-7 three-point shooting ... Took just three shots in the second half with the game in hand.

> Terrific all-around game vs. Central Arkansas with 14 points, 10 assists, 2 blocks and 2 steals.

> Scoring numbers are slightly down, but has become more well-rounded in his junior season, a focus of his off-season workouts ... His assist totals and shooting percentages are up in 2010-11 ... Has 39 dimes in 2010-11 after having just 39 assists all of last season.

> Was very unselfish in the Georgetown contest ... Scored 11 points on 5-of-12 FGs, but dished four assists and had three steals ... Three of his four assists came to backcourt running mate Marcus Denmon.

> Came off the bench vs. Arkansas-Pine Bluff to score a season high 18 points on 6-of-10 shooting.

> Hit 3-of-5 treys (12 points) and grabbed six boards vs. Vanderbilt.

> Has 137 career three-pointers and needs nine more treys to join the Mizzou career Top 10.

> Honorable mention preseason All-American by Sports Illustrated.

> Returning all-Big 12 Third Team from last year after pacing the club in scoring and tying for the team lead with 68 three-point makes.

> Named to the Preseason Top 50 for the John Wooden Player of the Year Award.

> Named to the Preseason Top 50 for the James Naismith Player of the Year Award.

> Named one of college basketball's top shooters by FoxSports.com's Jeff Goodman.

> Named one of college basketball's Top 15 wing players by CBS's Gary Parrish.

> Is of course known for his tireless work ethic and wears #24 because he is thinking about the game of basketball 24 hours a day.

> Often sleeps in the locker room during the season, which allows him to workout during off-hours.


#32 Steve Moore, 6-9, 270 Pounds

> A native of Kansas City and played at nearby Truman High School.

> Career game in the season-opener vs. Western Illinois, scoring a career high nine points, while tying a career high with five boards.

> Scored seven points and blocked three shots vs. Arkansas-Pine Bluff.

> Grabbed a career high seven rebounds vs. North Alabama to go with four points.

> Third on the squad with 17 blocked shots this season... And finished his sophomore season with 17 blocks in his final eight games.

> Spent a portion of the summer playing with Global Sports Academy in Europe.


About Colorado

Missouri faces one of the nation's top scoring clubs, the Colorado Buffaloes, on Saturday afternoon in Boulder ... CU is averaging 84.8 points per game and ranks #7 nationally in points per game, led by the top scoring tandem in the league, Alec Burks (19.1) and Cory Higgins (16.6) ... CU has won nine of its last 10 games since a 2-3 start and have topped 80 points in 8-of-10 outings ... Colorado also boasts improved depth this year with the addition of freshman Andre Roberson ... The long, athletic freshman leads the team in rebounding (7.7) and is chipping in 6.7 points on 58 percent shooting ... The Buffaloes also return starters Marcus Relphorde (12.1 ppg) and Austin Dufault (9.0) along with sharpshooter Levi Knutson, who has hit 26-of-52 treys this year.


Denmon Named To Wooden Top 30 List

Marcus Denmon has played his way onto All-America lists throughout the country and on Jan. 6 he was named to the John Wooden Award Midseason Top 30 list ... Denmon has been one of the country's most efficient players and is averaging 17.2 , 4.0 rebounds, 2.0 assists and 2.0 steals for the Tigers this season ... He is also one of six Big 12 players named to the list.


Comparing The Last Three Seasons

Missouri is in the midst of the best three-year run in school history, but it is incredible how clear Mike Anderson's formula to success is when you compare the vital statistical numbers.


Category        10-11           09-10       08-09

Record           14-1             12-3         13-2

PPG                86.4             83.5         85.3

RPG               37.9             36.3         39.7

APG               18.7             18.3         20.1

SPG                10.3             13.1         11.3

FG%               .484             .475         .485

3FG%             .392             .401         .359

FT%               .721             .720         .646


Five In Double Figures = Great Seasons

Missouri has five players averaging double-figures in scoring this season, a rarity in school history ... In fact just three teams at Mizzou have had five players finish the year averaging double-figures: 1964-65, 1988-89 and 1989-90 ... Not surprisingly the 1988-90 teams recorded a combined 55 wins over those two seasons and this year's Tiger team is a staunch 14-1 heading into league play.


Lucky #7

Missouri's depth has led to unprecedented scoring balance this year, as the Tigers have had seven players reach double figures in the same game twice this year ... Mizzou had seven players score 10+ vs. both Central Arkansas and North Alabama ... The last time Mizzou had seven or more in double figures was a Dec. 2, 1995, win vs. Chicago State ... Below is a list of seven-double figure scoring games in school history.


Date           Opponent             10+      Score

12-30-87    Alabama State   8          129-64

12-30-89    Neb-Kearney      7          119-98

12-02-95    Chicago State     7          117-45

12-18-10    Central Arkansas           7  116-63

01-05-11    North Alabama  7          98-58


Milestone Watch

Junior guards Marcus Denmon and Kim English are each rapidly approaching 1,000 career points as Missouri Tigers ... English has 887 career tallies in 86 career games, while Denmon boasts 840 points in 87 contests as well ... The last pair of Tiger juniors to top 1,000 career points in the same season were Arthur Johnson and Rickey Paulding in 2002-03 ... English and Denmon will become the 41st and 42nd players in school history to top 1,000 points.


Big 12's Mr. Efficiency - Marcus Denmon

Marcus Denmon has been the most efficient guard in the Big 12 so far this season ... Ranked #4 in the league overall in scoring behind Baylor's LaceDarius Dunn (23.4 ppg), Texas' Jordan Hamilton (19.6 ppg) and Colorado's Alec Burks (19.1 ppg), Denmon has separated himself with his 50.6 percent field goal shooting, 1.9-to-1 assist/turnover ratio and just 11.6 FG attempts per game.

> Denmon is averaging 1.3 points per field goal attempt this year, which leads Dunn (1.2 points per shot), Hamilton and Burks, who average an excellent 1.1 points per shot ... Among the top four scoring guards Denmon's FG attempts per game is also well below that of Burks (12.7 FGA), Dunn (14.9) and Hamilton (15.4) this season, while his 50.6 percent shooting from the floor is tops among the group as well ... Oh and for good measure his 30 total steals is #2 in the Big 12.


Top Non-Conference Seasons at Mizzou

Missouri finished up non-conference play tied for the most wins in school history, while also boasting the best winning percentage through non-league action (.933) ... Missouri's 14 non-league wins this season tied the mark of the 1989-90 (14-2)  and 1988-89 (14-3) squads.


A Hundred Ways To Break It Down

Mike Anderson won his 100th game at Mizzou on Dec. 27, making him the fastest Tiger to reach that feat ... The 147 games it took Anderson to reach 100 topped the previous mark held by Quin Snyder, who won game #100 in 158 tries on Feb. 28, 2004 at Kansas State ... Norm Stewart won game #100 on Dec. 8, 1973, vs. UTEP in his 160th contest.

> Anderson, who is now 102-47 all-time at Mizzou, needs just nine more wins to top 200 for his career, which includes the 89 wins he racked up at UAB.

> Last but not least, Anderson became just the second coach in Missouri Basketball history to be 50 games over .500 for his career following an 81-62 win vs. Oral Roberts on Dec. 16 ... Anderson joins Norm Stewart (631-333 in 32 seasons) as the only other Tiger coach on that exclusive list.


Paint It Black & Gold

The addition of Ricardo Ratliffe and growth of Missouri's returners in the post have led to much more balance in Mizzou's offense ... The Tigers have scored 572 of 1,296 points in the paint this season compared to 508 a season ago ... The 572 "paint points" (through 15 games) is the second highest total during Anderson's time at Mizzou, just behind the 582 tallies scored by DeMarre Carroll, Leo Lyons and Co. through 15 games in 2008-09.

> Missouri has been outscored in the paint just once this season (Wyoming) and has topped 30 points 12 times and is averaging 38.1 points in the paint per game this season.


Tigers In The National Rankings

Missouri is again ranking among the national leaders in several statistical categories ... Below is a quick rundown of how the Tigers rank.


Category            Avg / Ntl Rk  Leader / Avg

Assists             18.7 / #4        Pitt / 20.3

Steals               10.3 / #7        NW State / 11.4

Scoring             86.4 / #5        VMI / 92.9

A/TO Ratio      1.4 / #13         Wisconsin / 1.8

Sc. Margin       19.1 / #13       Ohio St. / 28.1

T/O Margin      +6.5 / #2        Ohio St. / 7.6

FG%                   .484 / #20      Kansas / 53.5

Blocks               5.5 / #34        Arkansas / 7.8


The Freedom To Score

Coach Anderson loves an offense that shares the basketball, however the coach doesn't mind his Tigers getting greedy at the foul line and Mizzou has done just that this season, hitting 72.1 percent of its charity shots for the year and 74.3 percent over its last 12 games ... In fact after two sub-par nights at the line to open the year Mizzou has dipped below 70 percent as a team just three times over the last 13 outings.


Crunch Time Hoops From Denmon

- Missouri trailed #21 Illinois 57-56 with just over two minutes remaining, but Denmon hit a 17-footer with Jereme Richmond's hand in his face to give the Tigers a lead they wouldn't give up ... Denmon scored six points in the final 2:23, including a steal / assist on an Illinois in-bounds pass to seal the late-game surge.

- With the game tied and Vanderbilt running out the clock for a final shot in overtime, Denmon steals a pass from Brad Tinsley, scores the winning bucket (while being fouled) and completes the three-point play for an 85-82 win.

- On Jan. 9, 2010, with Missouri trailing Kansas State 55-52 and just 5:37 remaining, Denmon scores nine of the game's final 22 points to lift MU to a 74-68 upset win ... Denmon hit back-to-back treys, a running bank shot off the glass and a free throw off his own steal.

- Missouri and Texas Tech were tied 82-82 with 3:06 remaining in overtime in Lubbock when Denmon came off a screen and buried a 24-footer in front of the Missouri bench to give the Tigers a lead they wouldn't relinquish, resulting in a 94-89 OT win.

- Of course for good measure we need to pay homage to the 60-footer in the Sweet 16 of the NCAA Tournament vs. #2 Memphis on March 26, 2009, in Glendale, Ariz.


A Point Guard Family

Michael Dixon Jr. is distributing the rock like his "pops" (Michael Dixon Sr.) ... A sophomore starter for Mizzou, Dixon is among the Big 12 leaders in a number of categories this season, including assists (4th at 5.1 apg), steals (2nd at 2.3) and assist/turnover ratio (1st at 2.6) ... Those numbers mirror the collegiate success his father had at San Jose State (1982-85) when the elder Dixon ranked #1 in school history with 477 assists and #6 with 106 career steals.

> However the younger Dixon has unleashed a consistent offensive game as well this year and has hit for double figures in scoring in nine of his last 13 contests, highlighted by a career high 18 points vs. Old Dominion on Dec. 30 as well as 17 tallies vs. Wyoming and Georgetown ... Dixon also helped lead Mizzou to a win over Vanderbilt with 15 points, four assists and three steals.


Flip The Switch

Flip Pressey is finding his comfort zone, despite suffering a hand injury during practice ... The explosive pass-first guard fueled Missouri's offense during his last three games, dishing out 27 assists while committing just seven turnovers in wins vs. Presbyterian, Oral Roberts and Central Arkansas ... The Dallas native dished a career high 11 assists in the 116-63 win over UCA, equaling the Missouri freshman record ... The 11 dimes are also the most by a Big 12 player this season.

> Pressey ranked #1 in the Big 12 among freshmen with 4.1 assists per game and his 1.9-to-1 assist/turnover ratio ranks #5 in the league overall at the time of his injury.


Non-Conference Home Streak #2 In Big 12

Missouri has won 57 consecutive non-conference games at home since 2005-06, which ranks very well amongst the rest of the league ... Here are the top win streaks in the conference:


Team                              Streak

Texas A&M                   59

Missouri                 57

Kansas                   43

Kansas State                31

Oklahoma State          29

Texas                     27

Oklahoma               25


Offensive Balance = Tough To Defend

Missouri continues to be one of the nation's most balanced programs in 2010-11 ... The Tigers have had 10 different players score nine or more points in a game this year and nine of those Tigers have reached double figures ... In fact the Tigers have five players averaging double figures in scoring currently ... In addition, seven different Tigers have grabbed six or more rebounds in a game, five different players have dished three or more assists and five different Tigers have had three or more steals ... Kim English and Mike Dixon have reached those totals in all four categories so far this season for Mizzou.

> To illustrate how important balance is to Missouri Basketball, the Tigers had eight players top nine or more points in a game all of last season and then had a school record 11 do it in 2008-09.


Double R = Double-Digit Rebounding

Ricardo Ratliffe has played 15 collegiate games in NCAA Division I, but the newcomer has already produced three double-doubles,  was named to the Cancun Challenge All-Tournament team and is twice the Big 12's Rookie of the Week.

> Ratliffe led the Cancun tournament with 26 rebounds in two games, including 14 points and a career high 14 boards in the win vs. La Salle ... Ratliffe dominated the glass vs. highly touted La Salle forward Aaric Murray and helped Mizzou win the battle of the boards 42-to-37.

> The transfer needs eight more double-doubles to move into the Missouri single-season top 10 ... Jevon Crudup is 10th with 11 double-dips during the 1993-94 season.

> Ratliffe has shown an ability to score the rock as well ... The Hampton, Va., native has reached double figures in eight of his last 10 games and 11 times overall in 15 tries this season, including a career high 22 points vs. Georgetown on 9-of-16 FGs on Nov. 30.


O Brother, Where Art Thou?

Brother tandems aren't necessarily rare at Mizzou, but very few brother tandems have played at the same time for the Black & Gold ... Many Missouri fans remember the days of Slim & Slam (aka Sammie and Simeon Haley) and then there were Mike and Jerry Kirksey who played together one season (1957-58) and thanks to Gary Link for reminding us about the Minx twins, Beau and Charles, who played for MU in 1944, but now the Tigers have a new tandem of brothers, Matt and Phil Pressey.

> The Pressey brothers will get two seasons of play on the hardwood at Missouri and Matt enters the program after earning first team Junior College All-America honors at Navarro College in Texas, while Phil was one of the elite national recruits at the point guard position.

> To this point the most successful tandem (stats-wise) are the Haley Twins who each stood over 7-feet tall and played during the 1994-96 seasons ... The duo combined to score 819 points, grab 541 rebounds and block 120 shots during their two seasons playing together.

> During 1957-58 the Kirksey brothers of Buffalo, Mo., combined to score 125 points, led by Mike, who averaged 5.4 points per night.


Quick Starts For Anderson

Missouri is off to its best start under Mike Anderson ... The Tigers are currently 14-1 on the year, equaling the 14-1 start by MU during the 1989-90 season.


The Good Tigers Giveth...

Missouri will always be one of the country's more unselfish programs under former point guard Mike Anderson and the Tigers have showed a propensity to distribute the rock once again this year ... Mizzou has dished 20 assists  six times already this year and have topped 20 dimes 40 times (39-1) under Anderson.

> Missouri is currently averaging 18.7 assists through 15 games in 2010-11, which is #2 in the Big 12 and #4 nationally.

> Missouri dished a season high 33 dimes in its 116-63 win over Central Arkansas on Dec. 18, which is tied for the second most in school history and most ever by a Mike Anderson club.


And Taketh Away...

If it's The Fastest 40 Minutes in Basketball then opponents know waves of defensive pressure will be in store ... Missouri has ranked among the nation's leaders in steals each year under Anderson's watch, including a national best 10.9 steals per game in 2009-10 ... The Tigers also led the country by forcing 19.4 turnovers a game last season.

> Missouri is once again among the national leaders in both turnovers forced and steals this year, forcing 20.1 turnovers per game, including a school record 34 turnovers vs. North Florida ... The Tigers also average 10.3 steals a night, including 14 thefts vs. Georgetown.



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