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Good news: Mizzou only has a 2% chance of finishing 5-26!

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Giving Mizzou’s latest loss the Study Hall treatment.

NCAA Basketball: Louisiana State at Missouri Denny Medley-USA TODAY Sports

Your Trifecta: Phillips-Barnett-Geist.

If you have to review a loss every few games, you might as well get some variety.

LSU 88, Missouri 77

Mizzou
LSU
Pace (No. of Possessions) 79
Points Per Possession (PPP) 0.97 1.11
Points Per Shot (PPS) 1.22 1.21
2-PT FG% 55.6% 50.9%
3-PT FG% 25.9% 38.9%
FT% 61.5% 68.8%
True Shooting % 51.7% 55.0%
FTA/FGA 41.3% 21.9%
Mizzou LSU
Assists 16 17
Steals 3 9
Turnovers 14 10
Ball Control Index (BCI)
(Assists + Steals) / TO
1.36 2.60
Mizzou LSU
Expected Offensive Rebounds 14.1 14.4
Offensive Rebounds 10 10
Difference -4.1 -4.4

Shooting didn’t kill Mizzou on Wednesday. That was jarring. Mizzou still lost the shooting battle, mind you, but you can win with a True Shooting % over 50%.

Instead, defense killed Mizzou. LSU is all offense and no defense, so that makes sense, but after an iffy first half, LSU caught fire after halftime. The Tigers hit 57% of their 2-pointers, 50% of their 3s, and 78% of their free throws in the second half. Mizzou, meanwhile, continued to hit 2-pointers very well but went from 6-for-14 on 3-pointers in the first half to 1-for-13 in the second. That’s some pretty harsh regression to the mean.

Ball handling also killed Mizzou. So through most of non-conference play, MU was a) horrendous at shooting the basketball, b) pretty good at making you bad at shooting, too, and c) pretty good at the ball-handling battle. None of those things were particularly true. Jordan Barnett, Kevin Puryear, and Mitchell Smith combined for eight turnovers, and LSU had nine steals to Mizzou’s three. That’s a lot of lost possessions.

28 minutes for KJ Walton! Good! 3-for-7 on free throws! Less good!

Mizzou Player Stats

Player
AdjGS GmSc/Min Line
Terrence Phillips 20.1 0.67 30 Min, 12 Pts (4-10 FG, 2-7 3PT, 2-2 FT), 7 Reb, 8 Ast, 2 Stl, 1 TO, 3 PF
Jordan Barnett 19.4 0.59 33 Min, 18 Pts (7-14 FG, 2-7 3PT, 2-2 FT), 9 Reb (2 Off), 1 Ast, 2 Blk, 3 TO
Jordan Geist 16.5 0.50 33 Min, 13 Pts (2-5 FG, 2-4 3PT, 7-8 FT), 2 Reb, 3 Ast, 1 TO
Kevin Puryear 9.8 0.36 27 Min, 15 Pts (7-12 FG, 1-4 3PT, 0-1 FT), 7 Reb (2 Off), 3 TO, 5 PF
K.J. Walton 7.4 0.26 28 Min, 11 Pts (4-11 FG, 0-2 3PT, 3-7 FT), 3 Reb (1 Off), 2 Ast, 2 PF
Russell Woods 6.1 0.38 16 Min, 8 Pts (3-4 FG, 2-2 FT), 3 Reb (1 Off), 2 Blk, 4 TO, 2 PF
Frankie Hughes 1.3 0.09 15 Min, 0 Pts (0-3 FG, 0-3 3PT), 2 Reb, 2 Ast, 1 Stl
Cullen VanLeer 0.0 0.00 1 Min, 0 Pts
Reed Nikko -2.3 -0.18 13 Min, 0 Pts (0-3 FG, 0-2 FT), 2 Reb (2 Off), 1 Blk, 2 PF
Mitchell Smith -3.6 -0.89 4 Min, 0 Pts (0-1 FG, 0-2 FT), 2 Reb (1 Off), 2 TO

Poor Frankie Hughes. He contributed decent things to the box score outside of the shooting department, but ... the shooting still just isn’t there. Almost no one can be this bad at shooting the basketball forever, but the sooner, the better.

So let’s take stock: Reed Nikko’s ankle injury is back, Russell Woods was having back spasms, and Mitchell Smith is awaiting MRI results. That’s ... an impressive combination. That’s a lot of Barnett-Puryear minutes on the interior in Mizzou’s near future. For an out-of-necessity duo, that’s not bad. The two combined for 33 points on 26 shots, 12 defensive rebounds, and four offensive rebounds. That’ll play, even with six turnovers.

Man oh man, Mizzou got 36.6 Adj. GS points from Phillips-Geist and 29.2 from Barnett-Puryear ... and lost handily to a bad team. Guh.

Player Usage% Floor% Touches/
Poss.
%Pass %Shoot %Fouled %T/O
Terrence Phillips 18% 49% 5.1 79% 17% 3% 2%
Jordan Barnett 25% 39% 1.9 24% 57% 7% 12%
Jordan Geist 13% 46% 2.3 58% 16% 22% 3%
Kevin Puryear 26% 39% 1.5 0% 76% 5% 19%
K.J. Walton 23% 36% 2.6 41% 38% 21% 0%
Russell Woods 25% 37% 1.5 0% 41% 17% 41%
Frankie Hughes 9% 20% 2.5 80% 20% 0% 0%
Reed Nikko 13% 0% 0.9 0% 64% 36% 0%
Mitchell Smith 44% 0% 3.0 0% 21% 36% 43%

Rinse, repeat. Since Mizzou and NC Central tipped off on November 28, the Tigers have lost six of eight and have fallen from 128th in the Pomeroy rankings to 189th. And in their most winnable remaining game, they shot far better than normal and figured out a way to lose by double digits anyway. This is rough.

I mean, it’s a team full of freshmen and sophomores who can’t stop losing. Of course it’s rough. But if Mizzou doesn’t beat Auburn next Tuesday, this losing streak could easily reach double digits ... and then keep going for a while.

I’m trying to avoid saying “We know where this is headed” for about the 148th time in the last month, but ... we know where this is headed. Living it in the present tense is insanely demoralizing. But on we go.

But on the bright side, Pomeroy’s odds say there’s only about a 1.7 percent chance of finishing 5-26. So there’s that.