Nov. 19, 2012
Columbia, Mo. -
Mizzou Game Notes (PDF)
Missouri Tigers vs. Stanford Cardinal
Tip-Off: Noon CT
Arena: Imperial Arena (4,500)
TV: AXS.tv (Kenny Rice - Play by Play / Seth Davis and Tom Walsh - Analyst)
Radio: Tiger Radio Network
Rankings: Missouri - No. 14/No. 15 - Associated Press / USA Today Coaches' Poll
Stanford - RV/RV
Series: First Meeting
Missouri: Frank Haith (Elon `88); 162-106 overall (9th); 33-5 at Mizzou (2nd season)
Stanford: Johnny Dawkins (Duke `86) 78-60 at Duke (5th season)
> Missouri Basketball breaks out the passports for the second time this year as the Tigers travel to Paradise Island, Bahamas, to complete in the 2012 Battle 4 Atlantis ... Missouri opens play against Stanford on Thanksgiving Day and will meet either No. 2 Louisville or Northern Iowa on Friday.
> Earlier this year Missouri played on a five-game tour of Europe, which saw the club make stops in Amsterdam, Belgium and Paris ... Mizzou last played a regular season game outside the U.S. in 2010-11 when the team won the Cancun Challenge in Playa del Carmen, Mexico, with wins over Wyoming and La Salle.
> Alex Oriakhi is making his second trip to this event ... The senior played in the 2011 Battle 4 Atlantis as a member of UConn and helped the Huskies to wins over UNC-Asheville and No. 20 Florida State ... In a loss to UCF in the second round last year Oriakhi had 14 points, 10 rebounds and five blocked shots.
> Missouri's opponent in the opening round, Stanford, owned the country's longest active winning streak before a loss to a very good Belmont club (70-62) on Sunday ... Stanford had won eight consecutive games dating back to last season's 2012 NIT title in New York.
> Head Coach Frank Haith and the Tigers have a streak of their own ... Missouri has never lost a regular-season non-conference game under Haith ... The Tigers were a perfect 13-0 in pre-conference play last year ... Missouri also won a pair of tournament titles, claiming the 2011 CBE Championship with wins over Notre Dame and Cal and then the Big 12 Tournament, both at Sprint Center in Kansas City, Mo.
> Missouri is facing a member of the Pac-12 for the sixth consecutive year ... The Tigers are currently 4-1 in those games (won four consecutive), with two wins coming against Oregon (2009, 2010) and California (2008, 2011) ... Mizzou also opens a home and home series with UCLA this season (Dec. 28 in Los Angeles).
> Missouri has earned three comfortable wins this season, but it's been a tale of two halves ... Mizzou is averaging 34.0 points on 33 percent shooting in the first half, compared to 48.7 points on 56 percent shooting in the second half.
> Few players have a more interesting statistical spread in the two halves than Laurence Bowers ... Bowers is tied for the team lead on the club in scoring (15.3), but is averaging 14.0 points per game in the final 20 minutes ... He is also shooting an impressive 76 percent from the floor (16-of-21) in the second period.
> Missouri is coming off a 74-54 victory over Nicholls State and has really clamped down on the defensive end of the floor ... Mizzou's defense is allowing its opponents to shoot just 34 percent from the floor this year and is No. 5 nationally with 49.0 rebounds per game ... Missouri owns a +14.0 rebounding margin per game heading into Thursday.
> Just three current Tigers (Laurence Bowers, Michael Dixon and Phil Pressey) have ever worn the Mizzou uniform (prior to this season) ... 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.
Mizzou Basketball Cliff Notes...
> Missouri heads to the islands this week for three games in this year's premier preseason tournament, the 2012 Battle 4 Atlantis on Paradise Island, Bahamas.
> It's the second time Mizzou has played a regular-season game outside the United States ... The Tigers won the 2010 Cancun Challenge with wins over Wyoming (72-62) and La Salle (83-71).
> Mizzou plays its first games outside of Mizzou Arena this week ... The Tigers were very good away from home last year and are 7-1 in neutral-site games under Frank Haith, including the 2012 Big 12 Tournament crown.
> Defense and rebounding are the signatures of this year's team ... The Tigers are No. 5 nationally with 49.0 rebounds per game and are holding opponents to just 59 points on 34 percent shooting per game.
> Last season through three games Missouri was averaging just 36.3 rebounds per game and allowing 61.0 points per contest.
> Despite the very different styles of play, the scoring margins are virtually the same between this season and last, (82.3-61.0 in 2011-12 and 82.7-59.0 in 2012-13).
> The 2012-13 Tigers will also continue to improve with more familiarity ... Phil Pressey has been the lone returner to see time that played for Haith last year ... Pressey is leading the Tigers in scoring (15.3) and assists (4.7), while playing a team-leading 32.0 minutes per game.
> Despite having so many newcomers, Mizzou has been balanced through three games with eight players averaging at least 13.3 minutes a contest ... Six different Tigers have also reached double figures in scoring in a game this season and seven different Tigers have recorded at least 7+ boards in a game, with four different players reaching double figures in rebounding as well.
> Mizzou has never met Stanford on the hardwood, but the Tigers do have familiarity with the Pac-12 Conference over the last few seasons ... Missouri has faced California three times since 2007-08 (2-1) an swept Oregon (2-0) as part of the former Big 12/Pac-10 Hardwood Series ... MU will also open a home-and-home series with No. 13 UCLA on Dec. 28.
> Missouri's improved depth is allowing the club to attack its opponents in waves, resulting in elevated free throw opportunities ... The Tigers broke the Mizzou Arena record for free throw attempts on Nov. 10 with 44 vs. Alcorn State.
> Through three games the team is averaging 31.7 free throw attempts per night and has made 66 free throws, while its opposition has attempted just 56.
> Missouri has won 68 consecutive regular-season, non-conference home games since 2005-06 and since 2006-07 (61-0) the club's margin of victory has been 26.5 points in those non-league home tilts.
> Missouri is 11-0 in home non-league games under Frank Haith and each of those 11 wins have been by double figures ... In fact Mizzou is 16-0 in regular season non-league games under Haith and have won 14 of those games by 10 or more points, including wins over Villanova (10), Notre Dame (29) and California (39) on neutral courts.
> The month of November has been outstanding for the Tigers ... Missouri is 36-5 (.878) in November dating back to the 2006-07 season and is 28-0 at home during that stretch.
> Missouri has won at historic levels over the last four seasons and continues its search for a record-setting fifth consecutive 20-win campaign ... The Tigers have won 23+ games each of the last four seasons.
> MU also won 20+ in four consecutive years from 1988-92 and 1979-83.
> Haith's 2011-12 offense was known for its efficiency and the early returns are good this season as well ... Missouri is averaging 1.22 points per possession this year, despite shooting just 33 percent from the floor in the first half.
> A big reason for that scoring efficiency is low turnover numbers ... Missouri is averaging just 11.7 miscues a game.
> 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 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, playing five games 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.
> 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. 14) and the USA Today Coaches' polls (No. 14) ... 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 Sports ... Phil Pressey headlined that list at No. 2 among point guards, while Mike Dixon checked in at No. 26.
> 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.
> Missouri's entire backcourt was ranked No. 1 in America by NBC Sports.
> It was also ranked No. 1 in the country by ESPN Basketball analyst Miles Simon.
> Fran Fraschilla ranked Phil Pressey as the country's No. 5 most-important player.
> Luke Winn of Sports Illustrated also listed Pressey (No. 5) and Mike Dixon (No. 6) on his preseason Naismith Award watch list.
> Speaking of Dixon and Pressey, the duo has dished 583 assists in three 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'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.
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.
> Named to the Naismith National Player of the Year Watch List by the Atlanta Tipoff Club.
> Ranked the No. 2 overall player in the SEC by Sports Illustrated in its preseason Top 10 list.
> Ranked the No. 5 overall player nationally by Fran Fraschilla of ESPN.
> Broke the Mizzou single-season assists record last year with 223 assists and was second with 74 steals.
> Needs 144 more assists and 56 more 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.
> Leads the club in scoring (15.3) and assists (4.7) through three games and is shooting a solid 46 percent from the floor.
> Logged his fourth career 20-point game vs. Alcorn State with 21 points and three steals.
> Dished nine assists and scored 19 points, narrowly missing a double-double in the season opener vs. SIUE.
> Has topped double figures in scoring in five of his last six games dating back to last season and is averaging 17.3 points during that stretch ... He has also hit 15-of-27 treys (.556).
> Has 14 career games with 8+ dimes.
#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.
> 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.
> Made a great debut for Missouri vs. SIUE, grabbing 10 rebounds in just 18 minutes ... Also took two charges and scored three points.
> Is second on the team with 7.0 rebounds per game and is averaging 4.0 offensive rebounds per night.
> The 10 rebounds tied a career high ... He also grabbed 10 boards while a redshirt freshman at UAB vs. Houston on Feb. 26, 2011.
#5 Keion Bell, 6-4, 200 Pounds
> Named one of college basketball's Top Four Impact Transfers by ESPN The Magazine.
> Has scored 1,393 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.
> Was a key practice player for Missouri during its 30-5 season, sitting out due to NCAA transfer guidelines.
> Reached double figures vs. Nicholls State with 13 points ... Added seven boards and four steals in 29 minutes.
#11 Michael Dixon, 6-1, 190 Pounds
> Second Team All-American by The Sporting News.
> Ranked the No. 4 overall player in the SEC by Sports Illustrated in its preseason Top 10 list.
> 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.
> Played 34 minutes in his debut vs. SIUE and scored 11 points, dished four assists and ripped away three steals.
> Excellent defender that could see extended time at the 2-guard position because of his high basketball IQ and ability to defend.
> Made his first career shot, a three-pointer in the corner, and finished the first half 3-of-4 from three-point range vs. SIUE.
> Led the Tigers with 11 rebounds in the win over Alcorn State and was the first Tiger since Keyon Dooling in 1998-99 to begin his career with 3+ thefts in consecutive games.
> Leads the team with five three-pointers and is second with 30.0 minutes per game.
#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.
> Named CBS Sports' No. 2 Bounce-back Player entering 2012-13.
> 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.
> Averaging 14.0 points per game in the second half this season, including 18 second-half tallies vs. SIUE.
> Returned to the court with his fifth career 20-point game, scoring 20 points and grabbing seven boards on 7-of-12 shooting in the season opener vs. SIUE.
> That performance came in his 100th career game as a Tiger.
> Has topped 20 points five times in his career, three coming as a junior in 2010-11 and once as a sophomore, scoring a career high 23 vs. Georgia.
> Needs just 116 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 (126), needing 23 more to move to No. 2 all-time.
#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.
> Recorded his seventh career double-double (first at Mizzou) in the win over Alcorn State with 17 points and 10 rebounds ... Hit 7-of-8 shots and dished three assists in 28 minutes.
> Averaging 16.5 points on 13-of-17 (.765) shooting over his last two games.
> Second on the club in rebounding (6.3), three-point makes (4) and field goal percentage (.556).
#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.
> Stuffed the stat sheet in the win over Alcorn State ... Registered eight points, five boards, four assists, three blocks and two steals in just 22 minutes.
> Played nine minutes and hit a pair of three-pointers in his debut vs. SIUE ... Finished with seven points and was fouled on his first career three-pointer and finished with a four-point play.
> Exploded with 20 points in 25 minutes in the exhibition finale vs. Missouri Southern ... Hit 8-of-13 shots and saw extended playing time on the wing ... Also finished 3-of-4 from three-point range.
#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 174 more 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.
> Won the 2011 National Championship with Connecticut, the same night Frank Haith was hired to coach at Mizzou.
> First Tiger since Malcolm Thomas in 1983-84 to have three consecutive 10+ rebound games to open a season and the first Tiger to accomplish the feat (in three straight games) since Ricardo Ratliffe in 2010-11.
> Recorded his 15th career double-double vs. Nicholls State with 17 points and 10 rebounds.
> Leads the team with two double-doubles.
> Has made 19-of-23 free throws over his last two games (.826).
> Playing in the Battle 4 Atlantis for the second consecutive year (UConn in 2011).
#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.
> Grabbed seven rebounds and hit a free throw in the win over Alcorn State ... Grabbed six offensive rebounds, tops on the club in the win.
> Scored his first career bucket in the win over Nicholls State.
Oriakhi Flourishing At Mizzou
Alex Oriakhi won a national championship during his time at Connecticut, but the senior is playing some of the best basketball of his career at Missouri, averaging career highs of 12.3 points and 11.7 rebounds through three games this season.
> Oriakhi's best year at UConn came as a sophomore when he averaged 9.6 points and 8.7 rebounds, but saw those numbers dip to 6.7 points and 4.8 boards last season prior to his transfer.
> Oriakhi is among national leaders with his 11.7 rebounds per game and his 5.3 offensive boards per game ranks among the Top 10 in the country.
Follow Mizzou In Atlantis...
The 2012 Battle 4 Atlantis will be televised on AXS.tv and NBC Sports Network, with Mizzou's opening game vs. Stanford being televised on AXS.tv at Noon on Nov. 22 ... Below are local channel listings for both AXS and NBCSN.
Provider AXS.tv NBCSN
DirecTV 340 220
Dish 362 159/9466
Cable America 515 N/A
AT&T U-verse 1106 640
SureWest 655 35
Charter Check listing 54/206/806
Century Link N/A 108/408
Mizzou Campus N/A 39
Mediacom N/A 404