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Live Game Thread and Preview: A rebound opportunity presents itself as Mizzou faces South Carolina State

Mizzou will try and avoid another disaster by getting a W against South Carolina State

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

Final: Missouri 82, South Carolina State 59

1st Half

Starters: Connor Vanover, John Tonje, Nick Honor, Noah Carter, and Sean East II.

  • Sean East II floats in the first points for both team and the Tigers are up 2-0.
  • Connor Vanover turns of the ball leading to a transition foul by East. Drayton Jones knocks in a pair of free throws to tie things up.
  • First sub of the game: Jesus Carralero Martin comes in for Connor Vanover.
  • Davion Everett puts South Carolina State up 6-2. Mizzou is ice cold from the field. Tamar Bates and Anthony Robinson sub into the game for Honor and Tonje. Make it 8-2.
  • Noah Carter knocks down a pair of free throws. Lead cut to four, but it feels like 20 with the way the Tigers are playing.
  • Jordan Butler subs in for Noah Carter.
  • Caleb McCarty just hit a jumper that makes you feel like it might be one of those days for Mizzou. SC State leads 10-4.
  • But Jordan Butler slams home a dunk making it 10-6.
  • Caleb Grill, Nick Honor, and John Tonje sub in for MU with 14:10 left to play in the half shortly before Drayton Jones capitalizes underneath.
  • Sean East II subs in for Nick Honor.
  • And shortly thereafter, East hits a floater cutting it to six.
  • A backdoor cut by McCarty extends SC ST lead to 19-8. Timeout Mizzou.
  • Nick Honor ignite the crowd with a rebound and finish. Still a nine-point game.
  • Aidan Shaw comes in for John Tonje.
  • Noah Carter gets an and-one. SC State still leads 23-12.
  • Carter then allows an easy underneath bucket on the other end. 25-13.
  • Connor Vanover subs in for Carter.
  • Timeout Missouri. There are boos being heard around Mizzou Arena. 29-13 SC ST.
  • Sean East II breaks a 2:25 scoring drought with two free throws. 29-15 SC ST. Curt Lewis subs in for Tamar Bates.
  • Connor Vanover knocks down the Tigers first 3-pointer of the night. A turnover gives MU the ball back. Let’s see what they do with the momentum.
  • Vanover collects a block leading to a Nick Honor 3-pointer. SC ST lead is cut to 29-21.
  • South Carolina State ends Mizzou’s 8-0 run with a 3-pointer of their own.
  • Vanover adds a dunk assisted by Honor. 31-23.
  • Honor knocks down his second 3-pointer. It’s a five-point game now.
  • Aidan Shaw hammers down a dunk off of a rebound. Mizzou Arena is jumping right now.
  • Honor again! We are tied at 31!!!!!!
  • Everett gives SC ST the lead back briefly but Shaw hammers down another dunk. Mizzou’s bench is finally coming alive.
  • Everett has been South Carolina State’s offense scoring 10 points and now just gave the Bulldogs the lead back.
  • Sean East II cuts the lead to two at the buzzer. South Carolina State 37, Missouri 35.

Second Half

  • Starters for hopefully the final 20 minutes: East, Honor, Lewis, Shaw, Vanover.
  • An Aidan Shaw block leads to a fastbreak layup by Sean East II. We are tied at 37.
  • East capitalizes on the next trip down. Mizzou has its first lead of the night at 39-37.
  • Carter, Robinson and Robinson comes in for Lewis, Shaw and Vanover.
  • New lineup: Bates, Butler, Carter, East and Robinson.
  • Robinson hits a nice jumper. Mizzou back in front 41-39.
  • Anthony Robinson jump up for dunk. It gives Mizzou it’s largest lead at 43-39.
  • Robinson with another drive to the bucket and a foul. He’s single handily put Missouri up seven.
  • Now, he just came up with a steal and dished one off to Tamar Bates. Missouri is now up 48-39.
  • The freshman just took a charge. He’s amazing out here.
  • Jordan Butler has joined into the action too on both ends of the floor. a 14-0 run by the Tigers has Mizzou up 53-39.
  • Make it a 19-0 run following a Carter dunk. Tamar Bates comes up with a block on the other end. This is the most momentum Mizzou has had since the Minnesota game.
  • I believe its a 48-12 run for Mizzou. 22-2 in the last 5:33.
  • Aidan Shaw adds what I think is his third dunk of the night. Mizzou is up 71-51. The Tigers are 25-1 under Gates when scoring 70 or more points. The only loss...Jackson State.
  • Aidan Shaw just came up with a monster block on a routine dunk attempt by Mitchel Taylor. Shaw is up to five on the night. Missouri leads 77-55 with under two minutes to play.
  • Final: Missouri 82, South Carolina State 59.

Pregame Updates

Tonight’s Preview

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

After an unexpected and miserable loss at home to Jackson State, Missouri returns to the court for the second of its three-game homestand to face South Carolina State.

Missouri shot well on Sunday against Jackson State, but other areas helped contribute to keeping the then winless members from the SWAC to stay in the game, which led to Chase Adams making a fadeaway jumper with under 10 seconds to play.

South Carolina State comes to Columbia with a 2-3 record. The Bulldogs beat North Florida and Voorhees but losses to Samford, South Florida, and more recently a 20-point loss to Tulsa has kept them under .500.

As we learned Sunday, nothing is going to be easy, but the Tigers can look to get back on track the day before Thanksgiving.

Game Info

Time: 6:00 PM CT

Date: Wednesday, November 22nd, 2023

Location: Mizzou Arena, Columbia, Mo.

TV: SEC Network+

The Projected Starters


G: Nick Honor (Grad, 12.8 PPG)

G: Sean East II (Grad, 14 PPG)

F: John Tonje (Grad, 8.8 PPG)

F: Noah Carter (Grad, 12 PPG)

C: Connor Vanover (Grad, 1 PPG)

Notable Sixth Man: Caleb Grill (Grad, 8.8 PPG)

South Carolina State

G: Mitchel Taylor (FR, 12 PPG)

G: Omar Croskey (JR, 10.4 PPG)

G: Shamon Alston (SR, 3.5 PPG)

F: Davion Everett (JR, 6.4 PPG)

C: Drayton Jones (FR, 5.8 PPG)

Notable Sixth Man: Michael Teal (JR, 5.8 PPG)

Get To Know South Carolina State

NCAA Basketball: South Carolina State at Kentucky Jordan Prather-USA TODAY Sports

South Carolina State is led by second year head coach Erik Martin who went 5-26 in his first year under the helm. Martin played his collegiate ball at TCU and Santa Ana College, as well as Cincinnati in the early 90s. He went undrafted, but enjoyed a long professional playing career in the Continental Basketball Association and in Japan, South Korea and Taiwan.

He joined the coaching ranks in 2003 as an assistant coach at Jacobs Center High School. A year later he ascended to the college level becoming an assistant coach for Cincinnati State (2004-2006), Kansas State (2006-2007) and West Virginia (2007-2022), before taking his first head coaching job in Orangeburg, South Carolina.

It’s going to be a tough task to turning the Bulldogs into a relevant program, not only on a respectable level nationally, but also within the MEAC. The Bulldogs haven’t had a winning season since 2010 and their last NCAA Tournament appearance came in 2003.

Through this season’s first five games, South Carolina State hasn’t shot the ball well, firing 24.7% from behind the arc and 44.3% from the field. Its free throw percentage isn’t any better with the team converting just 62.4%. On the bright side for South Carolina State, the Bulldogs have grabbed the 42nd most rebounds per game with 43, while their 10.4 steals per game ranks 24th in the nation.

While growing pains are present within the program, the Bulldogs have a young star in the making in Mitchel Taylor. The freshman from Atlanta, Ga. has averaged 12 points, 3.2 rebounds, and 4.0 assist in his first five collegiate games. This also goes with nine steals on the young season, and in his last outing against Tulsa he tallied 12 points, six assists and four rebounds.

Omar Croskey did not score a single point against the Golden Hurricanes but is the Bulldogs’ second leading scorer with 10.4 points per game, including a combined 36 points versus North Florida and Samford. The leading scorer for the Bulldogs two days ago was Drayton Jones, who finished with a stat line of 19-8-2.

3 Keys To The Game

  1. Let’s get scrappy
NCAA Basketball: Jackson State at Missouri Denny Medley-USA TODAY Sports

Let’s be honest, Jackson State simply had more energy than Mizzou did on Sunday. Its bench and coaching staff was energetic pretty much throughout the whole game and that energy translated to the court. After the game, Dennis Gates pointed out how his team was not winning loose balls. If Missouri is unable to be scrappier and fight on the board against the Bulldogs it could find itself in due for another long miserable night.

“I think they were the first on the floor for every loose ball, which is very uncharacteristic of us but again, I credit coach Mo Williams, and his program and like I said before the game, they’re the best 0-5 team in the country,” — Dennis Gates following Missouri’s loss to Jackson State.

2. Complement with taking care of the ball

Missouri had an uncharacteristic 18 turnovers against Jackson State on Sunday. That was more than it has against SIUE and Minnesota combined. As mentioned up top, South Carolina is good when it comes to poking the ball free. Jackson State scored 26 of its 73 points (36%) off Mizzou turnovers. The Tigers shot well against the members of the SWAC, but taking care of the ball is going to the difference if the Mizzou wants to come away 4-2.

“They’re coming in here trying to expect to win and we got to get back to the things that we normally do,” Gates said. “We got to take care of the basketball and have a positive assist-to-turnover ratio.”

3. Get off to a fast start

At some point Mizzou is just going to have to break the opening tip and just put its foot on the gas and not let off until its ahead by 20-plus points. The Tigers through each one of their games have let the opposition stick around in the first half. Arkansas Pine-Bluff was within six points with under six minutes left in the first half. Memphis trailed by just seven going into the break before unleashing a second-half comeback. SIU-Edwardsville also trailed by seven at the break while we all know how the first half went against Minnesota. On Sunday, Jackson State went into the locker room with plenty of confidence down just 37-34. We know that this Missouri team can score and go on runs. It’ll just be nice to see it happen after the opening tip.

Game Prediction

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

KenPom Prediction: Missouri 87, South Carolina State 65

My Prediction: Missouri 84, South Carolina State 69

It can’t happen again, can it?

Let’s be real, Missouri was not itself against Jackson State and sometimes a fluke loss happens. It could also be gigantic wakeup call that can light fire into a team.

Missouri has a perfect opportunity to get right on Wednesday and Saturday before heading to Pittsburgh. The Tigers will probably shoot well, but if they want to completely ensure a victory it's going to have to do the little things right in taking care of the ball and also knock down its free throws.

I’m going to go on the record and say that Missouri isn’t going to lose to South Carolina State. If so, then it's time to panic.

Five Fan Questions

  1. How many assists and steals will Jesus Carralero Martin have?
  2. How many free throws will the Tigers knock down?
  3. How many points will Mizzou’s freshman combine for?
  4. What will be Mizzou’s largest lead throughout the game?
  5. What will the halftime score be?

Lastly, drop your game predictions and MVPs down below.