Nov. 2, 2012
Columbia, Mo. -
Mizzou Game Notes
Missouri Tigers vs. Missouri Southern State Lions
Tip-Off: 2 p.m.
Arena: Mizzou Arena (15,061)
TV: MSN (Chris Gervino - Play by Play / Jon Sundvold - Analyst)
Radio: Tiger Radio Network
Rankings: Missouri - No. 15/No. 17 - Associated Press / USA Today Coaches' Poll
Missouri Southern - None
Series: Last meeting: Tigers won 114-68 on Oct. 30, 2011, in Joplin
Missouri: Frank Haith (Elon `88); 159-106 overall (9th); 30-5 at Mizzou (2nd season)
Missouri Southern: Robert Corn (Missouri Southern `78) 375-284 at MSSU (24th season)
> Missouri continues its 107th season of basketball on Nov. 4 when the Tigers host Missouri Southern in the exhibition finale at Mizzou Arena ... It's the second consecutive season the Tigers and Lions will meet up ... Missouri traveled to Joplin last year for the One State, One Spirit Classic and won 114-68 on ESPNU ... That game was a charitable contest orchestrated by the two universities for tornado relief following the deadly May 22, 2011, twister.
> The last two times the Tigers and Lions have met up in exhibition play it ended with 30-win seasons for Mizzou ... The two clubs of course played last season (prior to Mizzou's 30-5 campaign) and also played on Nov. 11, 2008, the same season MU went 31-7.
> Don't forget to turn back your clocks ... Daylight savings ends on Sunday morning with clocks being turned back one hour.
> Missouri is coming off an impressive 91-58 win over Northwest Missouri State on Oct. 29 ... The Tigers jumped out to a 36-5 lead and never looked back as Earnest Ross (22 points) and Keion Bell (20 points) paced Mizzou's offensive punch.
> Missouri's newcomers combined for 73 of 91 points and 34-of-39 rebounds in the victory ... Laurence Bowers was a third Tiger in double figures dropping in 14 points on 6-of-8 shooting ... Phil Pressey dished 11 assists in his first 15 minutes of action this year.
> Missouri has enjoyed some impressive debuts in exhibition play over the years ... DeMarre Carroll scored 16 points in his debut vs. Missouri-St. Louis and Marcus Denmon (12 points) and Zaire Taylor (11) opened in double figures vs. Lincoln in 2008-09.
> Mizzou will be led by a host of newcomers as just three current Tigers (Laurence Bowers, Michael Dixon and Phil Pressey) have ever worn the Mizzou uniform ... Pressey, Dixon and Bowers have each earned all-Big 12 accolades over their collegiate tenures and Pressey was coined the Preseason SEC Player of the Year by the media on Oct. 22 ... Dixon was also selected as an All-SEC Second Team pick in the preseason.
> Missouri opens the year ranked among the Top 25 for the third consecutive season ... Missouri was ranked No. 15 to start the 2010-11 campaign and was pegged No. 25 last year ... The Tigers open 2012-13 ranked No. 15 by the Associated Press and No. 17 in the USA Today Coaches' Poll.
> The Tigers were last ranked in the preseason three consecutive years from 2001-04.
> Non-conference opponents have not enjoyed their stops at Mizzou Arena over the last few seasons and the Tigers have raced to an incredible 65 consecutive wins at home vs. non-league opposition since the end of the 2005-06 campaign.
> Missouri's last non-conference loss at home came vs. Sam Houston State in the 2005 Preseason NIT, but since then Missouri has gone nearly seven full seasons without a loss.
> In fact Missouri went undefeated during the regular season in non-league play in 2011-12 and has won 22 consecutive regular-season, non-conference contests, regardless of site dating back to 2010-11.
> Overall at Mizzou Arena Missouri is 67-4 at home since 2008-09, an incredible .944 winning percentage.
Mizzou Basketball Cliff Notes...
> Missouri looks to remain perfect in preseason play, hosting Missouri Southern in the exhibition finale for both clubs ... MSSU opens its preseason play at Oral Roberts on Nov. 1.
> The regular season is just one week away for the Tigers (Nov. 10) ... Mizzou hosts SIU Edwardsville on Saturday afternoon at 4 p.m. ... Missouri also faced SIUE during the 2008-09 season, earning a 107-57 win during the Cougars' transition to Division I.
> That SIUE game time was adjusted due to the Mizzou Football game at Tennessee earlier that morning ... The Tiger football team plays at 11:21 a.m. CT in Knoxville.
> Exhibition games can be dangerous, but Missouri has done a good job of handling its business in the preseason tune-ups ... Since the 2006-07 season Missouri is 14-0 in exhibition games and is averaging a 40.5 ppg margin of victory, including last week's 91-58 win over Northwest Missouri State.
> The Tigers led by as many as 43 in that game and were led by newcomers Earnest Ross (22) and Keion Bell (20).
> Haith's 2011-12 offense was known for its efficiency and the early returns are good this season as well ... Missouri averaged 1.14 points per possession in the Missouri Southern win, despite committing 25 turnovers.
> Missouri begins its first season of play in the Southeastern Conference ... League play officially begins on Jan. 8, 2013, vs. Alabama ... That game is actually the official opener to the 2013 SEC season.
> Mizzou got an early start to its 2012-13 campaign, but the actual start to the year came in Europe from Aug. 8-18 ... Missouri had just one returning player (Michael Dixon) see action overseas, proving to be a great opportunity for the MU newcomers to get extended playing time.
> The Tigers played games in Amsterdam, Belgium and France and earned four wins during the tour.
> Missouri will be seen on TV like never before thanks to the move to the SEC ... The Tigers will have a school record 18 games appearing on national TV during the regular season.
> Missouri has been ranked in the Top 25 by a number of media outlets, including the Associated Press (No. 15) and the USA Today Coaches' polls (No. 17) ... The Top ranking came courtesy of The Sporting News, which picked Missouri No. 10 in the nation.
> Mizzou also had five players ranked among the top players at their position by CBS ... Phil Pressey headlined that list at No. 2 among point guards, while Mike Dixon checked in at No. 26.
> In fact Missouri's entire backcourt was ranked No. 1 in America by NBC Sports.
> In the front court Alex Oriakhi was ranked No. 35 and Laurence Bowers checked in at No. 38.
> Newcomer Jabari Brown was ranked among college hoop's top wing players, checking in at No. 48.
> Speaking of Dixon and Pressey, the duo has dished 569 assists in two seasons as teammates and need to combine for 212 dimes to become the top assist tandem in school history ... Melvin Booker (1990-94) and Lamont Frazier (1990-94) combined for 780 dimes in four seasons as teammates ... Dixon and Pressey could surpass that total in just three seasons together.
> Missouri was college basketball's most efficient offensive club a year ago (according to KenPom.com) ... And how about this for an exciting SEC schedule, Kentucky was ranked No. 2 and Florida was No. 3.
> Frank Haith's offense also ranked No. 1 nationally in field goal percentage (.504), assist/turnover ratio (1.6) and among the Top 10 in scoring (6th - 80.4), scoring margin (5th - 14.1), three-point percentage (9th - .398), turnovers (5th - 10.2) and turnover margin (7th - 4.1).
> Haith was of course named the National Coach of the Year by the Associated Press, taking the Tigers to their second 30-win season in school history and fourth consecutive NCAA Tournament.
> Missouri's transfer class of Keion Bell, Jabari Brown, Alex Oriakhi and Earnest Ross is being considered as one of the best in basketball history by the Sporting News.
> Missouri has been incredible at home in non-conference games the last six years ... Overall the Tigers have won 65 consecutive non-league games at Mizzou Arena and are 67-4 at home (all games) since 2008-09.
Mizzou Player Quick Looks ...
#1 Phil Pressey, 5-11, 175 Pounds
> Finalist for the 2012 Bob Cousy Award given annually to the nation's top point guard.
> Preseason SEC Player of the Year by the league media.
> Preseason First Team All-American by CBS Sports.
> Broke the Mizzou single-season assists record last year with 223 assists and was second with 74 steals.
> Needs 158 assists and 61 steals as a junior to claim the career marks at Mizzou in both categories.
> Led the Big 12 Conference in both assists (6.4) and steals (2.1) last season, "quarterbacking" the nation's most efficient offense in 2011-12.
> Missouri averaged 1.187 points per possession last season, tops in college basketball, just ahead of Creighton who was second at 1.151.
> Dished 11 assists in the exhibition opener and those 11 dimes came in his first 15 minutes of play.
#3 Tony Criswell, 6-9, 226 Pounds
> Has NCAA Division I experience after beginning his career at UAB ... Started eight games as a redshirt freshman for the Blazers.
> Averaged 9.5 points during Mizzou's tour of Europe and shot 60 percent from the floor.
> Will bring very good size and athleticism off the bench for the Tigers and has added nearly 20 pounds of muscle during Mizzou's offseason weight program.
> Contributed eight points and five boards in 15 minutes in the exhibition opener.
#5 Keion Bell, 6-4, 200 Pounds
> Named one of college basketball's Top Four Impact Transfers by ESPN The Magazine.
> Has scored nearly 1,400 points in his career, but will be called upon to be Mizzou's primary defensive stopper on the perimeter in 2012-13, a role he relishes.
> High-flying guard that won top play honors on ESPN's Top 10 Plays of the Day after dunking over six people during Mizzou Madness on Oct. 12.
> Averaged 12.0 points and 6.3 rebounds during Mizzou's tour of Europe.
> Was a key practice player for Missouri during its 30-5 season, sitting out due to NCAA transfer guidelines.
> Scored 20 points and ripped a game high four steals vs. Missouri Southern on 8-of-12 shooting.
#11 Michael Dixon, 6-1, 190 Pounds
> Second Team All-American by The Sporting News.
> Second Team Preseason All-SEC by the league media.
> Was the nation's No. 1 bench scorer last year at 13.5 points per game. That total bettered the 12.6 ppg average of former Syracuse star Dion Waiters. Waiters was later drafted by Cleveland at No. 4 overall.
> On a run of 14 consecutive double-figure scoring games dating back to last season.
> Is Missouri's career leader in FT percentage (.854).
> Has already topped 1,000 career tallies (1,057) and ranks No. 37 all-time in career scoring.
> Needs 56 assists to move into the Mizzou career Top 10.
> Needs 24 steals to move into the Missouri career Top 10.
> Was ranked among college basketball's Top 50 point guards in 2012-13 by CBS.
#14 Negus Webster-Chan, 6-7, 200 Pounds
> One of two Canadians on the Missouri roster and a prep school teammate of Stefan Jankovic.
> Brings great size along the perimeter for Missouri and is able to play each of the three guard positions.
> Steady in his Tiger debut, scoring six points on 2-of-3 shooting in 25 minutes as a reserve point guard.
#21 Laurence Bowers, 6-8, 227 Pounds
> Missed last season with a torn ACL (left knee), but is back to full strength in his senior season.
> Continues to be one of Missouri's best finishers around the rim and was named one of college basketball's "Top Dunkers by NBC Sports".
> Listed by CBS as one of college basketball's Top 50 post players prior to the start of the season.
> Was a team leader during last season's 30-win campaign and is a major figure in that class, which won a school record 107 games from 2009-12.
> Needs just 162 points to reach 1,000 for his career.
> Outstanding student that was named Academic All-Big 12 in 2012 and he is already a graduate of Mizzou working towards his Masters degree.
> Is second in career blocked shots per game (1.2) and fourth in total blocks (123), needing 26 more to move to No. 2 all-time.
> Enjoyed a fantastic return with 14 points and three boards 21 minutes.
#32 Jabari Brown, 6-5, 205 Pounds
> Will be available for Missouri after the completion of the fall semester.
> One of the country's top players as a high school senior, earning Jordan Brand All-American honors.
> Very good shooter that averaged 10.0 points in the summer tour of Europe.
#33 Earnest Ross, 6-5, 222 Pounds
> Brings great familiarity with the SEC after beginning his career at Auburn.
> One of Missouri's top performers in the weight room and has added great quickness and flexibility under the watch of Todor Pandov.
> Led Missouri in Europe with 9.3 rebounds, including a pair of double-doubles.
> Did most of his scoring damage attacking the rim, shooting 62 percent inside the three-point stripe.
> Hit 6-of-10 treys and scored a game high 22 points in 28 minutes ... Had 17 of 22 tallies come in the first half of play.
#35 Stefan Jankovic, 6-11, 230 Pounds
> Talented athlete that has his best basketball days ahead of him.
> Good ball-skill for his size and can bother opponents around the rim with his length.
> Grabbed three boards in nine minutes of work in his Tiger debut.
#42 Alex Oriakhi, 6-9, 255 Pounds
> Late addition to the Mizzou roster and has one season of eligibility remaining after transferring from UConn.
> Has improved offensively during his time at Mizzou and will benefit from the play of the nation's top pass-first point guard, Phil Pressey.
> Played on the AAU circuit with Pressey early in his high school career.
> Needs 211 points as a senior to top 1,000 for his collegiate career.
> Listed by CBS as one of college basketball's Top 50 post players prior to the start of the season.
> Averaged 11.3 points and 8.3 rebounds in Europe.
> Won the 2011 National Championship with Connecticut, the same night Frank Haith was hired to coach at Mizzou.
> Narrowly missed a double-double with eight points and 10 boards in 21 minutes vs. NWMSU.
#44 Ryan Rosburg, 6-10, 250 Pounds
> One of the state's top players as a high school senior and gives the Tigers great size behind senior Alex Oriakhi.
> Brother (Andy) played at Mizzou in 2011-12 as a walk-on.
> Grew up a Mizzou fan and led all freshmen in Europe with 5.8 points, 5.0 rebounds and 17.3 minutes.
> Battled foul trouble in the exhibition opener, but scored four points in eight minutes.
No Mizzou Arena Shyness For Earnest Ross...
Needless to say that Earnest Ross loves playing in front of the Tiger faithful ... The Auburn transfer has played in front of a Mizzou Arena audience three times so far and has enjoyed great results each time out ... Ross played in the 2011-12 Black & Gold Game, this year's Mizzou Madness scrimmage and the Oct. 29 exhibition opener and is averaging 17.7 points on 20-of-32 shooting (.625) from the floor and 9-of-17 shooting (.529) from three-point distance ... Included in that average is the Mizzou Madness scrimmage, which lasted just 10 minutes, so pro-rated his averages would skyrocket.
2012 Northwest Missouri Exhibition Game
8-13FGs 6-10 3FGs 22 points 28 minutes
2012 Mizzou Madness Scrimmage
4-5 FGs 2-3 3FGs 11 points 9 minutes
2011 Black & Gold Game
8-14 FGs 1-4 3FGs 20 points 28 minutes
Tigers Picked Third In SEC Preseason Poll...
Missouri was picked third in its inaugural SEC Preseason Media Poll on Oct. 22, ranking just behind defending national champion, Kentucky and Florida.
> The Tigers received a first-place vote as well and had two players named to the Preseason All-SEC Team ... Junior Phil Pressey was named the Preseason Player of the Year and senior Michael Dixon was named a Second Team pick.
Preseason Media Poll Pts
Kentucky (17) 328
Florida (5) 310
Missouri (1) 286
Tennessee (1) 269
Ole Miss 186
Texas A&M 122
South Carolina 54
Mississippi State 37
Pressey Named Preseason SEC Player of the Year...
Missouri had a pair of players earn preseason honors from the league media on Oct. 22, when Phil Pressey was named the Preseason Player of the Year and Mike Dixon was named to the Preseason Second Team.
> Pressey is the first Tiger to win Preseason Player of the Year recognition since Arthur Johnson in 2003 by the Big 12 Conference.
> Pressey led the Big 12 in assists (6.4) and steals (2.1) per game last season and could break the school's career marks in both categories as a sophomore.
> Mizzou's last conference postseason Player of the Year was Melvin Booker in 1994.
> Dixon also received a vote for Preseason Player of the Year and was selected to the league's second team ... Dixon is Missouri's leading returning scorer at 13.5 ppg and led all of college basketball in scoring off the bench a season ago.
An Exhibition of Big Wins...
Missouri has been dominating in exhibition victories over the last six years ... Below is a list of Tiger exhibition contests and margins of victory since the 2005-06 season.
Opponent Score +/- Season
Northwest Missouri 91-58 +31 2012-13
Central Missouri 88-70 +18 2011-12
Truman State 87-48 +39 2011-12
Missouri Southern 114-68 +46 2011-12
Arkansas-Fort Smith 116-74 +42 2010-11
Harris-Stowe State 114-60 +54 2010-11
NW Missouri St. 83-60 +23 2009-10
Truman State 96-33 +63 2009-10
Lincoln 97-54 +43 2008-09
Missouri Southern 87-58 +29 2008-09
Missouri-St. Louis 78-51 +27 2007-08
Missouri Western 113-55 +58 2007-08
Missouri-Rolla 105-67 +38 2006-07
Lithuania Academy 94-40 +54 2006-07
Missouri certainly beefed up its non-conference schedule this year, including three games in Nassau, Bahamas, in the Battle 4 Atlantis over the Thanksgiving holiday (Nov. 22-24) ... Missouri opens play vs. defending NIT Champion Stanford and then faces either Louisville or Northern Iowa in Round 2.
> The other side of the bracket doesn't get any easier, featuring Duke, Memphis, VCU, and Minnesota.
> Missouri opens a non-conference series with UCLA this year ... The Tigers travel to the revamped Pauley Pavilion on Dec. 28 and the Bruins are scheduled to return the game in Columbia in 2013-14.
Protecting The Rock...
Since the beginning of the 2007-08 season, Mizzou has been one of the best teams nationally at protecting the basketball ... In fact, since 2007-08, Missouri has enjoyed its five best turnover-free seasons in school history and with both Mike Dixon and Phil Pressey back, that number could rank high once again in 2013.
> Last year Missouri averaged just 12.7 miscues per game, the second lowest turnover average in school history.
Rank TPG Season
1. 11.8 2008-09
2. 12.7 2011-12
4. 12.8 2010-11
5. 13.0 2007-08
6. 13.3 1999-00
7. 13.7 1989-90
Non-Conference, No Problem...
Missouri plays in the country's top annual non-conference game vs. Illinois each year and that game will take place once again on Dec. 22 at the Scottrade Center in St. Louis ... Missouri has won three consecutive in the series, Mizzou's longest winning streak vs. the Illini since 1997-99 ... Missouri also won four straight vs. the Orange & Blue from 1991-94 ... Over the last 21 meetings Illinois owns a slight 11-10 series advantage.
> Mizzou and Illinois announced a six-year extension to the Bud Light Braggin' Rights Series on Oct. 18, assuring the game stays at the Scottrade Center in St. Louis through 2017.
Every basketball player has the dream of playing in the NBA and Phil Pressey's father, Paul Pressey, has achieved that dream.
> Paul Pressey, now an assistant coach for the Cleveland Cavaliers, is widely considered the original point forward in the NBA and was named first or second team All-Defense in the league three times ... Pressey played for Milwaukee, San Antonio and Golden State in his career which spanned 1983-93.