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Oct. 14, 2010
Irving, Texas - University of Missouri junior forward Ricardo Ratliffe (Hampton, Va.) was named the Big 12 Conference's Preseason Newcomer of the Year on Thursday morning by the league coaches. It's the second time in Head Coach Mike Anderson's tenure that a player has earned the top newcomer billing in the preseason. DeMarre Carroll earned the same honor before the 2007-08 campaign and went on to claim the postseason award as well.
A 6-foot-8, 240-pound post player, Ratliffe will add tremendous size and strength to a strong returning nucleus at Missouri. The Hampton, Va., native enjoyed a historic two-year career at the junior college level, earning back-to-back first team all-NJCAA All-America honors while setting school records for scoring (1,653 points) and rebounding (580) at Central Florida Community College.
One of just 13 players in junior college history to be named first team All-America twice, Ratliffe averaged 27.4 points and 11.3 rebounds as a sophomore en route to national junior college player of the year recognition. As a freshman, Ratliffe logged norms of 26.8 points and 11.0 rebounds to earn all-conference and league player of the year recognition.
Junior guard Kim English also received some preseason pub from the Big 12 coaches. The 6-foot-6 standout was named an honorable mention all-league pick after a stellar 2009-10 campaign. English averaged 14.0 points in 29 starts and tied for the team lead with 68 three-point field goals. English was named to the John Wooden Award preseason list last week as one of college basketball's Top 50 returning stars.
Ratliffe, English and their Tiger teammates open the doors on the 2010-11 campaign on Friday afternoon with the official start of practice. Missouri will give fans its first look at this year's squad on Oct. 28 at the annual Black & Gold Game at Mizzou Arena. Doors open at 6 p.m. and the game is slated to start at 7:30 p.m. Ratliffe and his teammates will be on the concourse of Mizzou Arena signing autographs before tip-off.
Season tickets for Missouri Basketball are also on sale through the Mizzou Athletics Ticket Office. Fans can call 1-800-CAT-PAWS (884-PAWS) for more information.
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