Historic Braggin' Rights Series a New Experience for Newcomers

5 years 1 month 1 day ago Wednesday, December 19 2012 Dec 19, 2012 Wednesday, December 19, 2012 8:06:00 PM CST December 19, 2012 in Sports
By: Danny Spewak
loading

COLUMBIA -- Keion Bell grew up in sunny Southern California, 1,800 miles away from St. Louis and the Mississippi River divider between Missouri and Illinois.

He signed with Pepperdine of the West Coast Conference out of high school, where in three seasons he played exactly one road game in the central time zone. In his universe, Missouri and Illinois may have well been the same school.

Little did he know the two programs have been playing each other each winter for more than three decades. He grew up knowing nothing of MU's classic triple-overtime victory in 1993. Nothing of the 1988 game when the Tigers blew an 18-point lead and lost by three points- nothing about Lou Henson, Norm Stewart, Quin Snyder or, even better, the popcorn a fan dumped on Snyder in 2005.

Until Monday, Bell had no clue Missouri had won three straight Braggin' Rights games after snapping a nine-game losing skid in 2009.

"I know nothing about the streak," Bell said. "That was my first time hearing it when you just brought it up."

It's certainly understandable. Hey, Bell's a California kid. So is Jabari Brown, an Oakland native and Oregon transfer who joined MU's active roster at the start of the second semester and said he's heard it's a "real intense game." In fact, of the 13 players on Missouri's roster, only two have ever competed in a Braggin' Rights game: Senior Laurence Bowers and junior Phil Pressey.

Auburn transfer Earnest Ross, one of the several transfers who sat out per NCAA rules last year, said he watched last year's game on television.

"It looked like a crazy, exciting game," Ross said. "Just coming here last year, and seeing that, I'm looking forward to actually playing in the game this year."

Bowers, who took a medical redshirt after tearing his ACL last October, did not play in the 2011 Braggin' Rights game, but he sealed the 2010 win in the final minute by converting a layup while Illinois' Mike Tisdale pushed him in the back for an intentional foul.

He arrived at Missouri right in the middle of that nine-game losing streak. As a freshman, the Fighting Illini whooped his Tigers by 16 points, dropping them from the top-25 and sending the black-and-gold faithful flocking to the exits early yet again.

Since that night in 2008, though, Bowers has never again lost to Illinois.

"I definitely want to go out with another win," Bowers said. "I figure if Illinois can win nine years in a row, why can't Mizzou?"

It's up to him and Pressey to prepare the 11 newcomers for Saturday's unique atmosphere. Even Frank Haith, who coached his first Braggin' Rights game a year ago, has less experience in this game than those two players.

"I've heard all the guys last year and the previous years talk about how big the game is and the intensity of the game," Bell said. "It'll be no better feeling than to actually experience it this year."

Missouri and Illinois are both ranked in the top-15 for the first time since 2002, so the stakes are high for the newcomers' first Braggin' Rights game.

"[Ross] obviously played in the SEC, and Keion played at UCLA, played at Gonzaga, had 37 at Gonzaga, so they've been in tough arenas," Haith said. "But being in a place where there's 50/50 and every basket there's cheering..."

"I don't know if anybody's been in that."

They'll be in it on Saturday. For 11 players, it'll be the first time.

For Bowers, it'll be the last.

"I don't want to lose this game," Bowers said. "It's a big-time game."

Maybe that'll catch Keion Bell's attention. 

More News

Grid
List
JEFFERSON CITY (AP) — Missouri Gov. Eric Greitens said there was no blackmail or threatened violence in an extramarital... More >>
1 hour ago Saturday, January 20 2018 Jan 20, 2018 Saturday, January 20, 2018 1:09:00 PM CST January 20, 2018 in News
KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) — Kansas City police have made an arrest in a double shooting that left a 46-year-old... More >>
2 hours ago Saturday, January 20 2018 Jan 20, 2018 Saturday, January 20, 2018 12:49:41 PM CST January 20, 2018 in News
SEDALIA - The Pettis County prosecutor has issued a warrant for the arrest of a man in connection to the... More >>
2 hours ago Saturday, January 20 2018 Jan 20, 2018 Saturday, January 20, 2018 12:33:00 PM CST January 20, 2018 in News
ST. LOUIS (AP) — Coyote sightings are becoming more frequent in the St. Louis area, and some are strolling down... More >>
4 hours ago Saturday, January 20 2018 Jan 20, 2018 Saturday, January 20, 2018 10:37:36 AM CST January 20, 2018 in News
ST. LOUIS (AP) — The number of confirmed cases of chronic wasting disease in Missouri deer is up, but... More >>
4 hours ago Saturday, January 20 2018 Jan 20, 2018 Saturday, January 20, 2018 10:26:00 AM CST January 20, 2018 in News
RICHMOND, Va. - The Federal Bureau of Investigation is asking for the public's help with identifying a serial robber called... More >>
5 hours ago Saturday, January 20 2018 Jan 20, 2018 Saturday, January 20, 2018 9:59:00 AM CST January 20, 2018 in News
CHARITON COUNTY -- Alonzo Bernard Thorpe of Clark, Missouri was found guilty of eight counts of child molestation and two... More >>
7 hours ago Saturday, January 20 2018 Jan 20, 2018 Saturday, January 20, 2018 7:38:00 AM CST January 20, 2018 in News
WASHINGTON (CNN) -- In the final moments leading up to Friday's midnight deadline, Senate Republicans and Democrats were unable to... More >>
10 hours ago Saturday, January 20 2018 Jan 20, 2018 Saturday, January 20, 2018 5:00:00 AM CST January 20, 2018 in News
(CNN) - The FBI recently opened an inquiry into Missouri Gov. Eric Greitens, two US officials told CNN, as he... More >>
17 hours ago Friday, January 19 2018 Jan 19, 2018 Friday, January 19, 2018 9:19:05 PM CST January 19, 2018 in Continuous News
COLUMBIA - A visiting MU researcher is working to fight cancer with blueberries - specifically the extract of the fruit.... More >>
18 hours ago Friday, January 19 2018 Jan 19, 2018 Friday, January 19, 2018 8:06:00 PM CST January 19, 2018 in News
COLUMBIA - Some facilities in the state may be required to hang posters with information about human trafficking by the... More >>
20 hours ago Friday, January 19 2018 Jan 19, 2018 Friday, January 19, 2018 6:43:00 PM CST January 19, 2018 in News
JEFFERSON CITY (AP) — Missouri offered Amazon nearly $2.5 billion in incentives over 10 years in a bid to... More >>
21 hours ago Friday, January 19 2018 Jan 19, 2018 Friday, January 19, 2018 5:25:09 PM CST January 19, 2018 in News
COLUMBIA - Show-Me State Games will be hosting its last MFA Oil - Break Time Shootout on Saturday. It is... More >>
22 hours ago Friday, January 19 2018 Jan 19, 2018 Friday, January 19, 2018 4:26:00 PM CST January 19, 2018 in News
COLUMBIA - Researchers at the University of Missouri have found that 80 percent of state students who needed treatment for... More >>
22 hours ago Friday, January 19 2018 Jan 19, 2018 Friday, January 19, 2018 4:09:00 PM CST January 19, 2018 in News
COLUMBIA - Campaign finance reports revealed Governor Eric Greitens' campaign operation has been leasing space in the same complex as... More >>
23 hours ago Friday, January 19 2018 Jan 19, 2018 Friday, January 19, 2018 4:03:00 PM CST January 19, 2018 in News
COLUMBIA- The annual blood drive for fallen officer Molly Bowden came at a time when collecting blood is vital. ... More >>
23 hours ago Friday, January 19 2018 Jan 19, 2018 Friday, January 19, 2018 3:56:00 PM CST January 19, 2018 in Continuous News
COLUMBIA- A federal judge sentenced a man to more than 20 years in prison Friday for exploiting several children under... More >>
1 day ago Friday, January 19 2018 Jan 19, 2018 Friday, January 19, 2018 2:37:00 PM CST January 19, 2018 in News
COLUMBIA- While the government heads toward a possible partial shut down many government agencies in mid-Missouri will remain open. ... More >>
1 day ago Friday, January 19 2018 Jan 19, 2018 Friday, January 19, 2018 2:23:00 PM CST January 19, 2018 in News
Columbia, MO
Broken Clouds 52°
3pm 49°
4pm 49°
5pm 48°
6pm 45°

Select a station to view its upcoming schedule:

Coming Up Next

3:00p
USSA Skiing and Snowboarding
4:00p
USSA Skiing and Snowboarding
5:00p
Jeopardy!
3:00p
Elementary
4:00p
Elementary
5:00p
Sheriffs El Dorado County

Tonight's Schedule

7:00p
Will & Grace
7:30p
Superstore
8:00p
Dateline NBC
9:00p
Saturday Night Live
7:00p
Family Guy
7:30p
Family Guy
8:00p
Bob's Burgers
8:30p
Bob's Burgers
9:00p
KOMU 8 News @ Nine on The CW
9:30p
Seinfeld