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MIZ-ZOOM: COVID Scheduling

Cuonzo Martin, Javon Pickett, and Kobe Brown talk about the Tigers’ newly scheduled game against Oregon and other COVID-related issues this season poses

On Tuesday morning, the Missouri Men’s Basketball team addressed the media before heading to Omaha to play the Oregon Ducks.

Originally, the Tigers were supposed to play Oregon at Mohegan Sun in Connecticut in a early-season tournament dubbed Bubbleville. However, both teams dropped out of the competition, and now they will meet on neutral court in Omaha, Nebraska.

This rapid scheduling, unscheduling, and rescheduling of games is something that has just become a part of the sports world in this COVID times, and Mizzou is getting a taste of it early in their season. When asked how the team’s preparation in a situation like this changes, Javon Pickett said, “We just go about everything kinda the same… making sure we are being safe.”

Kobe Brown echoed similar thoughts. “We still come to practice and play hard, regardless of when we will play next,” he said, while adding that the experience of this team aids these situations. “Having guys that have been here for a couple years… it’s easier to be fundamentally sound.”

This will be Oregon’s first game of the season, and they will be a very different team than they were last year after the graduation of Payton Pritchard. With Mizzou having little time to prepare and almost no tape to go off, Cuonzo Martin still didn’t seem concerned, “It’s just playing how we play; we can’t get caught up in well they might do this, they might do that.”

With the addition of Oregon, apparently Mizzou turned down at least one other possible high-profile matchup, “We had two teams text us yesterday, like Texas Tech, and we just can’t do it because of our schedule.”

It seems like Cuonzo will be getting a lot texts and calls this year, however, he said he doesn’t foresee too many more deliberate schedule changes. “We might need one more game, we might need one more… but there are also teams we have in the works in case things change.”

For now, the Tigers will get ready to play the No. 21 Oregon Ducks tomorrow, and from there we will just have to wait and see. Until then, MIZ!