TIPOFF: 7 p.m. CST. ARENA: Mizzou Arena - Columbia, Mo. (15,061). TV: MSN (Chris Gervino play-by-play; Jon Sundvold analyst). RADIO: Tiger Radio Network (Tom Ackerman play-by-play; Gary Link analyst). RANKINGS: Mizzou: NR/NR CSU: NR/NR SERIES: Mizzou leads 5-1, last - Mizzou won 98-77 on Nov. 27, 2006. COACHES: Mizzou:Mike Anderson (Tulsa '82); 115-57 overall (6th season); 26-16 at Mizzou (2nd). CSU: Ron "Fang" Mitchell (Edison State '84); 345-291 overall (21st season).
Missouri will look to bounce back from a 59-58 loss to Illinois when it faces Coppin State on Thursday evening at Mizzou Arena ... Although Missouri has lost three of its four games by a combined seven points, the Tigers have been devastating at home this year and have won all seven games at Mizzou Arena by double-figure margins.
So far this season the Tigers are a perfect 7-0 at home and will look to continue their home court dominance in non-conference play during the Mike Anderson era ... Missouri is 18-0 at home in non-conference action under Anderson ... Overall, Missouri sports a 25-game non-conference home court winning streak dating back to the 2005-06 campaign, which is the longest non-conference winning streak since the Tigers won 27 consecutive from 1987-1990 ... Mizzou's last non-conference loss at home came against Sam Houston State in the 2005-06 season opener.
Mizzou Arena has been a terror dome for non-league opponents during the Anderson era ... In running their record to 18-0, the Tigers are averaging a 26.3 ppg. margin of victory vs. non-conference foes at home, including quality wins over Arkansas, Davidson, Mississippi State and Purdue.
A unique aspect of Missouri's tough schedule thus far is that the Tigers have played teams from a variety of power conferences ... Mizzou has played Michigan State, Purdue and Illinois from the Big Ten, Maryland from the ACC, Arkansas (and later Mississippi State) from the SEC and Cal from the Pac-10.
Despite the tough schedule, three of Missouri's losses have come by a combined seven points to programs that participated in NCAA Tournament play last season.
Missouri has been the nation's No. 1 team at defending the three-point arc this season, as foes are shooting just 23.4 percent from bonus distance against the Tigers ... Missouri's three-point defense easily leads the Big 12 ... Oklahoma is second at 30.4 percent ... Over the last eight games, opponents are shooting just 26-of-133 from three (.195) vs. the Tiger defense.
A by-product of Missouri's great perimeter defense has been some huge scoring runs ... The Tigers have had six runs of 20+ points this season, including a 34-2 run vs. McNeese State and a 24-4 run to close out Purdue.
Another major contributor to those scoring runs are turnovers and steals ... Missouri is No. 11 nationally with 10.4 steals per game ... That statistic is made possible due to the fact the Tigers are forcing one turnover every six possessions ... As a result, the Tigers are third in the Big 12 and rank No. 21 nationally with 82.3 points per game.
MIZZOU QUICK HITTERS
Mizzou continues its 102nd season of college basketball on Thursday when it faces Coppin State at Mizzou Arena.
The Tigers and Eagles are playing for the second consecutive season and for the fourth time since 2002.
In the modern era (1946-present), no Tiger head coach has a better record to start his career than Anderson ... The second-year coach is 26-16 in his first 42 games with MU.
The Tigers will look to improve upon their 25-game home court winning streak vs. non-conference foes, which dates back to the 2005-06 season opener ... In fact, Head Coach Mike Anderson has yet to lose a non-conference game at Mizzou Arena since his hiring in 2006 ... The Tigers are a perfect 18-0 under Anderson on the friendly confines of Norm Stewart Court.
Currently, Missouri is a perfect 7-0 at home this season and is averaging 85.7 points per game in those home contests ... The Tigers also have a 27.7 ppg. scoring margin in those seven home wins and have won each contest by double-figures, including the 94-66 win over North Carolina A&T on Dec. 17.
ESPN's Pat Forde named Mizzou Arena the No. 1 "New School" college basketball arena in America ... Who can argue?, the place is loaded!
Missouri has been downright offensive in the first half this year ... The Tigers are averaging 44.7 points through the first 20 minutes and are outscoring opponents 44.7-33.0 during that span.
A major reason for that scoring surge in the first period is Missouri's 50.1 percent field goal shooting and a remarkable 2-to-1 assist-to-turnover ratio.
Missouri has already topped 50 points in the first half four times this season after accomplishing that feat just twice over the last three years combined.
Overall, Missouri ranks No. 21 nationally in scoring at 82.3 points per game.
Mizzou's defensive pressure may actually be picking up following last season's school record 302 steals ... The Tigers have forced 243 turnovers (125 steals) in 12 games this season ... Last year, Mizzou led the Big 12 with 10.1 steals and 18.9 turnovers per game and are averaging 10.4 steals and 20.3 turnovers forced per game this year, including the 23 turnovers forced vs. 2007 NCAA Tournament qualifiers Maryland and Arkansas.
Conversely, the Tigers are turning the ball over just 13.0 times per game.
The Tigers have done an excellent job converting off those miscues and are averaging 25.4 points per game off turnovers ... When you break down the numbers, Missouri is scoring 30.2 percent of its points off of turnovers (24.8-of-82.3 ppg).
Overall, the Tigers are forcing a turnover on every six possessions, which allows them to average 8.3 more shots per game than their opponents.
In addition to steals, a trademark of Mike Anderson-coached teams has been assist totals and the Tigers are recording assists on 60.9 percent of their buckets this season (221 assists on 363 FG's).
When you take Missouri's 39 "put-back" buckets out of the equation, the Tigers are averaging assists on 68.3 percent of their field goals.
Overall, Missouri's 18.4 assists per game rank No. 13 nationally.
Even with the club's fast-paced style of play, Missouri boasts a 1.4-to-1 assist-to-turnover ratio on the season, which ranks No. 8 nationally.
To put Missouri's assist/turnover numbers in perspective, through 12 games last season (versus a much lighter strength of schedule), Missouri had 210 assists and 190 turnovers and had just a 1.1 assist-to-turnover ratio as a team.
This year Missouri has 221 assists, 156 turnovers and that 1.4-to-1 assist to turnover ratio.
The Tigers boast a +7.3 turnover margin on the year, which ranks among the best in America, due in large part to the fact their 13.0 turnovers committed per game rank No. 17 nationally.
Missouri has flashed a balanced playing rotation, as nine Tigers are averaging at least 12.3 minutes per game and no player is averaging more than 27.5 minutes.
Missouri has topped double figures in three-point makes three times this year, including a season high 11 vs. McNeese State ... The Tigers also hit 10 three-pointer vs. Michigan State and Southern.
TIGER TIDBITS (Individual Notes)
The Junk Yard Dog has had a major impact in just his first season ... DeMarre Carroll, also known as J.Y.De, dominated the Columbia Regional of the CBE Classic en route to MVP honors and has reached double figures in 10-of-12 game this season, including three 20-point efforts and a pair of double-doubles this season.
Carroll has actually been close to producing double-double efforts in eight games this year and is averaging 14.6 points and 7.0 boards to rank as the team leader in both categories.
Carroll has topped 10 rebounds four times this season, including back-to-back games vs. North Carolina A&T and Illinois.
Even more incredible is that he is producing those numbers in just 24.1 minutes per game.
Carroll always seems to find a way to impact the game for Missouri and while he was saddled with foul trouble vs. Purdue, the junior forward blocked a career high three shots in the final 4:11 to help lead Missouri to the come-from-behind win ... Carroll actually scored three points, had three blocks, two assists and a steal in the final 7:35 of the MU win vs. Purdue ... The Birmingham native also added a career-high tying four steals vs. McNeese State, showing another way he has impacted a Tiger win.
Carroll was recently named one of Seth Davis' (Sports Illustrated) Key Faces in New Places for 2007-08.
ESPN's Andy Katz also said "there may not be a harder working interior player -- outside of Tyler Hansbrough -- than DeMarre Carroll."
In case you were wondering, Carroll dominates the classroom too and needs seven hours in the spring semester to finish his degree and begin his Masters work in Administration.
Stefhon Hannah continues to be one of the nation's most dynamic point guards and has reached double figures in 16 of his last 19 games, including a three 20-point efforts this season.
Although his scoring numbers are consistent (14.1 points through 12 games this year vs. 14.4 through 12 games last year), the key to Hannah's improved play has been fewer turnovers ... Last season through 12 games Hannah had 62 assists and 41 turnovers ... This year he has 58 dimes and just 33 turnovers vs. a much stronger set of opponents.
Hannah flashed his toughness vs. Maryland on Nov. 20 when he played with the flu and still managed 14 points and five dimes ... The Chicago native wasn't able to eat all day and spent the early portion of the second half in the locker room, but returned to score eight second-half points, leading MU to the win.
Hannah broke out of an early offensive slump with 20 points vs. No. 11 Michigan State on Nov. 20 ... The consistent lead guard has reached double figures in 35-of-42 career games for MU.
Hannah scored a career high 28 points at Arkansas, marking the 10th 20-point effort of his career.
In addition to his scoring numbers, Hannah's assist totals are on the rise ... When you factor in Hannah's 4.8 assists per game this year, the senior guard is actually accounting for 25.6 of Mizzou's 82.3 points per game (including assists on three-point field goals).
Hannah also has 58 assists, 25 steals and just 33 turnovers on the year ... For his short career, Hannah has had five or more dimes 22 times (including eight of 12 games this year) and multiple steals 25 times, which is no surprise since the 6-foot-1 senior was named the nation's ninth-best perimeter defender by Fran Fraschilla and ESPN.com.
A key factor in Hannah's play has been improved free throw shooting and Hannah is 24-of-26 (.923) over his last nine games ... In the last five minutes of a game Hannah is 13-of-14 from the charity stripe (.933).
As you would expect, Hannah is a preseason candidate for the Bob Cousy National Point Guard of the Year Award.
Not to be outdone, Keon Lawrence has reached double figures in 16 of his last 20 games, including a season high 17-points and eight rebounds at Arkansas.
Lawrence has been an outstanding mid-range jump shooter this year and is shooting 49.5 percent from inside the arc (38-of-77).
Despite being just 6-foot-2, 175 pounds, Lawrence is third on the club at 4.5 rebounds per game, including five games of six or more boards.
The dynamic guard is also second on the team with seven blocks.
As was documented by the Kansas City Star, there are no "off days" for Lawrence, as he makes 1,000 shots each day the team is given off by head coach Mike Anderson.
While fellow sophomore J.T. Tiller is known more for his defensive production, the Marietta, Ga., native reached double figures for the third time this season with 10 points in a career high 28 minutes vs. Illinois.
The reserve guard has reached double-figures three times this season, and is averaging 8.8 points over his last four games.
Tiller also played some key minutes late vs. Purdue, helping to hold Purdue to just one field goal in the final 7:47 of the game en route to Mizzou's game-winning 24-4 run.
Tiller continued his strong play vs. McNeese State, dishing a career-high tying four assists, without committing a turnover and added three more dimes and three steals vs. North Carolina A&T.
Over the last five games Tiller has nine assists, six steals, just two turnovers and is a perfect 6-of-6 from the foul line, exactly what you want from a key reserve guard.
Matt Lawrence is starting to heat up from three-point range and is shooting 42.0 percent (20-of-48) from beyond the arc over his last seven outings.
Lawrence has hit multiple treys in six of those seven contests as well.
The St. Louis native has been at his best on the road throughout his career and his shooting 43.8 percent from beyond the arc (35-of-80) from three-point range away from Mizzou Arena.
The Big 12's No. 2 ranked three-point shooter at 44.3 percent last season, Lawrence opened the year just 7-of-25 (.280) from beyond the arc, but is now up to 38 percent on the year.
Despite the tough start, Lawrence has shot 50 percent or better from bonus distance in five of his last 10 games.
Lawrence also has 11 steals over his last eight games, including a season high four thefts at Arkansas.
No Tiger has been more consistent over the last five games than Leo Lyons ... Lyons has reached double figures in five consecutive outings, and is averaging 13.0 points and 5.4 boards during that stretch.
The five consecutive games in double-figures is a career best for Lyons, who had actually reached double figures just nine times in his previous two seasons combined.
Lyons made his hometown return to Kansas City a special one, as he poured in career highs of 23 points and 11 boards in the 14-point Tiger win over Maryland.
Lyons earned Player of the Game honors from Dick Vitale and Co. as he hit 8-of-11 shots and 7-of-11 free throws en route to his first career double-double.
The 23 points made him the third different Tiger to top the 20-point plateau this year.
Lyons recorded his second double-double of the year in the win over Purdue, chipping in 13 points and 10 rebounds ... Lyons now ranks seventh in the Big 12 with those two double-dips.
Lyons flashed his versatility vs. Western Illinois when the 6-foot-9, 240-pounder dished a career high six assists and recorded two steals ... Lyons has 23 assists, which is tops among Tiger post players.
He just goes about his business quietly, but senior guard Jason Horton has dished out 36 assists compared to just 13 turnovers this season, to rank No. 2 in the Big 12 in assist-turnover ratio.
Horton now has 355 career dimes, which is No. 8 all-time in school history and the Dallas native needs just 24 more assists to move into the MU career top five.
Horton needs just four more assists to pass Lynn Hardy (358) for seventh all-time.
Senior forward Marshall Brown is closing in on 1,000 career points ... The Austin, Texas native currently has 794 tallies and needs 206 points to become the 38th member of the Mizzou 1,000-point club.
The selfless senior was named team captain in December by teammates and coaches.
Brown broke out of an offensive slump McNeese State, scoring 11 points in 17 minutes and reached double figures yet again with 13 points on a career-high tying three 3-point makes vs. North Carolina A&T.
Freshman Justin Safford graced ESPN's Top 10 Plays on Nov. 8 with his alley-oop slam vs. Missouri Western ... Safford checked in at No. 6.
Safford scored his first career points against Fordham on Nov. 13, scoring five points and grabbing five boards in nine minutes.
Darryl Butterfield leads Mizzou with 12 charges taken this season, including three games with multiple charges drawn this year.
Senior forward Vaidotas Volkus gave the Tigers a great first-half lift off the bench vs. Purdue, scoring five points and grabbing three boards in seven minutes ... For the game, Volkus played 11 minutes, which was his third-highest output this year.
ABOUT McNEESE STATE
Coppin State enters the contest 3-10 on the season, following a 73-46 loss at Indiana on Dec. 22 ... The Eagles always play one of the nation's toughest schedules and actually faced No. 13 Marquette and No. 14 Indiana on back-to-back days, falling 89-42 in Milwaukee, before losing in Bloomington, Ind., the very next afternoon ... The Eagles have also played at Hawaii, Arizona State, Ohio State, Xavier and Dayton ... Tywaine McKee leads Coppin State with 15.5 points per game ... The senior point guard is hitting 50 percent of his three-pointers and leads the club with a 91.5 percent stroke from the foul line.
THE SERIES WITH COPPIN STATE
Missouri and Coppin State will meet for the seventh time on Thursday, with the Tigers holding a 5-1 series advantage ... Missouri has won three consecutive in the series, including a 98-77 win last season on Nov. 27 at Mizzou Arena ... Coppin State's lone win vs. Mizzou came Dec. 2, 1997, at the Hearnes Center by a 78-70 margin ... Later that season Coppin State went on to shock No. 2-seeded South Carolina in the opening round of the NCAA Tournament ... Missouri is 10-1 all-time vs. members of the Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference.
WITH A TIGER WIN:
Missouri would improve to 9-4 on the season and move to 27-16 all-time under Mike Anderson.
Overall, Anderson would improve to 116-57 in his six seasons as a head coach.
Mizzou would improve to 20-6 vs. non-conference foes under Anderson, which would include wins over Purdue, Maryland, Arkansas, Mississippi State and Davidson.
Mizzou would run its non-conference home court winning streak to 26 games, which is the longest non-conference winning streak since the Tigers won 27 consecutive from 1987-1990.
Mizzou would improve to 23-4 at home under Anderson and 19-0 at home vs. non-conference opposition.
Missouri would improve to 11-1 all-time vs. teams from the Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference ... That lone loss came to Coppin State in 1997, the same season the Eagles defeated South Carolina in a No. 2 vs. No. 15 game in the opening round of the NCAA Tournament.
IT'S NOT ABOUT THE STEAL:
When watching Missouri's high-pressure style of play it's easy to fall in love with the steal statistic, but really, Mike Anderson's style of play isn't about "the theft", it's more about "the act" ... The huge steal totals get the most publicity because it's an NCAA recognized statistic, when in fact, "deflections" and turnovers are more closely charted by the coaching staff.
It's the deflections that often lead to turnovers and possibly steals, but can also upset the opponent's rhythm on offense and force them to regroup while the shot clock is winding down.
So far this season Missouri has 326 team deflections, which have ultimately led to 243 turnovers forced, either via 125 steals, seven 35-second clock violations, six forced five-second calls, four 10-second violations, etc.