Former Mizzou Star Flourishing in Russia

1 decade 2 months 5 days ago January 23, 2007 Jan 23, 2007 Tuesday, January 23 2007 Tuesday, January 23, 2007 6:54:18 PM CST in Sports

His leadership back then taught him to push his teammates hard. They didn't just win the Big Eight title that year, Mizzou went 14-0 in conference. Despite the perfect mark, the Mississippi kid who smiled on and off the court all season fell one win short from the program's first ever NCAA Final Four.

Booker now plays professionally in Russia.

"I never thought I'd make it to Columbia, let alone Moscow, I've played all over the world. I've played in Italy for 5 years, Turkey for 2 years and this is my 3rd season here in Moscow. It's cold, but I'm enjoying it," Booker said.

The point guard had tryouts, but a career in the NBA never panned out.

"I'm not really sad. I feel like I was right there on the brink of I could have made it," he said.  "I took the opportunity to come to Europe and I fell in love with it so I just decided to stay here."

Booker still follows the Tigers from overseas, and likes the new leadership of Mike Anderson.

"[Anderson's a] great coach, worked hard. He did a great job at UAB," says Booker, "I know he's going to do a great job at Mizzou."

Booker will be watching to see if Coach Anderson can find a way to bring another perfect conference season to Missouri.

"It was exciting, nobody ever imagined us going undefeated in the conference or having the year that we had," Booker remembers, "I would never ever, ever, forget it."

Booker averages 10 points a game, and more than four assists per game leading his team in Moscow.

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