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Mizzou Hoops caps a good weekend for Tiger fans

Here are today’s Mizzou Links.

It was a good weekend

Happy Monday morning, Tiger fans!

Having a hard time shaking off the sleep this morning? Just trying to make it to Wednesday/Thursday/whatever day you’re off work? Maybe take a few minutes to go over the weekend that was in Mizzou sports.

Friday: Basketball barely scrapes by Kennesaw State, one of the lowest ranked teams in Division I by Ken Pomeroy’s ratings, in the first round of the Paradise Jam.

Saturday: Football travels to Knoxville to take on the charging Volunteers, promptly 50-balls them.

Sunday: Basketball takes the court again, this time notching a flawed, but solid, win over a decent Power 5 team.

Obviously we’re here to focus most on the Sunday aspect of this weekend, but it’s good to be reminded how fun this weekend was overall.

Anyway! Back to yesterday. Obviously the big story is the Tigers 69-63 win over Oregon State, in a game which many people likely pegged for the Beavers after Friday’s debacle against Kennesaw State. However, Cuonzo Martin’s team slowed down the pace — and got to the line — enough to book a ticket to face Kansas State. They were paced by a senior point guard who’s been too injured to even practice.

“It’s been impressive to see how [Jordan] Geist has played due to not being able to practice because of his back,” Martin said. “He’s battle-tested and looks forward to those moments. ... He might say his back hurts all the time so he doesn’t have to practice.”

But it wasn’t just Jordan Geist. Kevin Puryear chipped in his second straight 17-point effort, providing some big plays to maintain the Tigers’ hold on the game.

Smith went to the bench with Missouri up seven and Puryear quickly extended the lead to nine with a floater along the baseline. From there, MU’s large lead began to evaporate. The Beavers responded with a 10-2 run in a three minute span, cutting the Tigers’ lead to 26-24... Puryear stopped the bleeding with a layup. The 6-foot-8 senior forward scored Missouri’s final six points of the half to lead all scorers with eight points in the first half.

Aside from Puryear and Geist’s put-the-team-on-my-back efforts, the Tigers continued their streak of solid ball security, a strength that has only been absent in the Tigers loss to Iowa State

A BCI nearing the 2.0 mark is good. Single digit turnovers is better. One thing I’m curious about is where this team ends up in the turnover area. Iowa State was obviously a low point but otherwise they’ve been fairly solid and the guards were even better, with only Pinson and Mark Smith (a charge) netting turnovers for the guards.

We’ve spent a lot of time digesting how the newcomers — Torrence Watson, Mark Smith, K.J. Santos — could help raise the floor for this season. But it’s still going to take consistently strong performances from Puryear and Geist to make this season one that’s fun to watch. They proved they’re up to the challenge this weekend. Hopefully they’ve got enough to propel the Tigers to an upset win against their old Big XII foe.

Report cards are in!

Per usual, report cards are in from Saturday’s game. They’re almost as fun to read as the game was to watch!

Yesterday at Rock M

More Links:

  • Mizzou Volleyball hosted No. 11 Kentucky for Senior Day, but couldn’t come away with a match win.
  • I have to be honest, I’m having a hard time working up any sort of emotion over Les Miles’ hiring in Lawrence. But for those who feel inclined to do so, here’s a piece detailing what exactly Miles is getting himself into and why things could go north or south.
  • Here’s some incredibly good news that’s probably more important than anything else in this article. Get well soon, Richaud.
  • Mizzou is getting votes in every major poll, but the AP would have the Tigers the highest.
  • Finally, the latest bowl projections are in, and the choices seem to be narrowing for Mizzou.

247 Sports, ESPN: Music City Bowl vs. North Carolina State

CBS Sports: Music City Bowl vs. Boston College

ESPN: Gator Bowl vs. Michigan State

SB Nation: Outback Bowl vs. Michigan State

Sports Illustrated, Yahoo Sports: Liberty Bowl vs. Oklahoma State