A never before seen matchup is coming to a Mizzou Arena near you. Watch as the Missouri Tigers welcome the Morgan State Bears today at 2 pm. You don’t want to miss it.
There’s nothing a college sports fan loves more than facing off against their conference rivals, historical rivalries and playing games against new opponents. However, facing an unfamiliar competition can help enhance each team’s games as well.
Although this game might not be deemed the most exciting on the non-conference schedule, it will be a test to how the Tigers can overcome their struggles like they did against Murray State.
Here are three keys to the game if the Tigers want to secure the win.
- Establish the post game early.
- Missouri has the definite height difference in this matchup. The Bears’ tallest player is 6’2. Having the post game with Blackwell, Frank and Williams heating up early will help give an early advantage and cushion for any Bears runs.
2. Transition defense must be established immediately.
- Having a size disadvantage can be advantageous. The ability to quickly run the floor in transition and finish on the other end can ruin any type of momentum, especially if the ball isn’t able to find the net.
The most recent example of this was last season’s WNIT defeat against Fresno State.
It doesn’t matter if you’re the best team in the nation or the worst. If you’re not able to slow down the opponent’s transition offense, it won’t be a pleasant game. Welcome to the achilles heel of basketball.
3. If you have an open shot, take it.
- In the third quarter of the home opener, part of the collapse was due to not taking advantage of open looks. Instead, the Tigers went inside, forcing a shot up that most likely didn’t go in. Now, I can’t blame the Tigers for wanting to be unselfish and give the ball up to their teammates. But if the opponent is laying off of you and you have the opportunity for a high percentage shot, go for it. The worst thing that can happen is you miss it. Better to take the chance than pass it off to someone who might not have a good look.
Every single game is a test to how teams can improve from the previous games. Morgan State will test how Missouri will be able to assert themselves down low and keep up with the speed of a smaller squad.