The Xtra Point: Missouri Continues To Loom In Bubble

4 years 11 months 1 day ago Saturday, February 15 2014 Feb 15, 2014 Saturday, February 15, 2014 1:39:48 PM CST February 15, 2014 in Sports
By: Mark Kim, KOMU 8 Sports Columnist

COLUMBIA - After a key win against Arkansas, the Missouri Tigers will continue to prove their case for the NCAA tournament with the first of two matchups against Tennessee. If the Tigers win tonight, they'll move up another spot in the SEC standings. If they lose, it will give the tournament committee more of a reason to keep Missouri out of the big dance. 

Jordan Clarkson is a point guard, but he isn't playing like one. The junior is only averaging 3.3 assists per game, but averages 19.2 points per game. He can't keep playing like this. If the Tigers want a chance to not only make the NCAA Tournament, but to be successful in it, they'll need ball movement. The Volunteers are great at defending the guard positions so Clarkson can't just count on jacking up random shots or making cuts to the hoop in double coverage. Ball distribution hasn't happened all year, and it needs to happen now. While he's currently projected to be a lottery pick in next year's draft, he could take his stock to a whole different level if he can be unselfish with the ball. 

Missouri's frontcourt hasn't been great and they're about to face another tough challenge. Tennessee boasts forward Jarnell Strokes, who averages 14.2 points and 10.3 rebounds per game. The Tigers aren't a very good team when it comes to interior play. Ryan Rosburg and Jonathan Williams III have not proven themselves to be consistent shot blockers. If Missouri wants to win today, they need to have an interior precense. Rosburg and Williams III need to contest every shot and give Strokes pressure in the post. 

This seems to be a consistent topic in this column, but the Tigers can't keep taking three pointers. Missouri shot 4/17 (23.5%) from three against Arkansas. It all comes back to ball distribution. The TIgers need to work to find the best shot. Missouri can't possibly think taking the three is the best consistent option. Williams III or even Rosburg can provide more low post scoring if they get the ball in their hands. 

With today being a home game and with the way the Tigers have played recently, I would give Missouri the edge today. While I still don't think Clarkson will distribute the ball, I do think he'll provide enough offensive firepower to give the Tigers the edge. Earnest Ross will continue his solid play as the team's 3rd scoring option and distract the Volunteers from time to time. With the pressure on Frank Haith and the Tigers, I don't see them falling today. 

More News

Grid
List
COLUMBIA – The Columbia Police Department acknowledged Thursday it’s looking into a possible connection between an early morning homicide in... More >>
8 minutes ago Thursday, January 17 2019 Jan 17, 2019 Thursday, January 17, 2019 5:01:00 PM CST January 17, 2019 in News
ST. LOUIS (AP) — A St. Louis newscaster has apologized for what he called an unintentional racial slur while referencing... More >>
1 hour ago Thursday, January 17 2019 Jan 17, 2019 Thursday, January 17, 2019 3:30:00 PM CST January 17, 2019 in News
KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) — A 25-year-old Kansas City man is charged with murder in the shooting death of a... More >>
1 hour ago Thursday, January 17 2019 Jan 17, 2019 Thursday, January 17, 2019 3:11:00 PM CST January 17, 2019 in News
JEFFERSON CITY - Gov. Mike Parson on Thursday announced the restructuring of state agencies in his quest to highlight economic... More >>
3 hours ago Thursday, January 17 2019 Jan 17, 2019 Thursday, January 17, 2019 1:58:00 PM CST January 17, 2019 in News
JEFFERSON CITY – Domestic violence shelters in mid-Missouri could stop receiving federal funds starting Friday at 6 a.m. due to... More >>
3 hours ago Thursday, January 17 2019 Jan 17, 2019 Thursday, January 17, 2019 1:30:00 PM CST January 17, 2019 in News
JEFFERSON CITY (AP) — A Missouri appeals court says a lower court judge was wrong to order a woman to... More >>
4 hours ago Thursday, January 17 2019 Jan 17, 2019 Thursday, January 17, 2019 12:34:00 PM CST January 17, 2019 in News
KANSAS CITY (AP) — A Kansas City couple claims in a federal lawsuit that state requirements for foster parents who... More >>
4 hours ago Thursday, January 17 2019 Jan 17, 2019 Thursday, January 17, 2019 12:12:00 PM CST January 17, 2019 in News
JEFFERSON CITY – There are 28 more deer from 11 Missouri counties that have chronic wasting disease (CWD), according to... More >>
6 hours ago Thursday, January 17 2019 Jan 17, 2019 Thursday, January 17, 2019 10:45:00 AM CST January 17, 2019 in News
ST. LOUIS (AP) — Sen. Josh Hawley plans to move his family to a suburb of Washington D.C., but will... More >>
7 hours ago Thursday, January 17 2019 Jan 17, 2019 Thursday, January 17, 2019 10:04:00 AM CST January 17, 2019 in News
COLUMBIA – As the partial government shutdown continues in Washington, Heart of Missouri United Way is stepping up to help... More >>
7 hours ago Thursday, January 17 2019 Jan 17, 2019 Thursday, January 17, 2019 9:12:00 AM CST January 17, 2019 in News
COLUMBIA -- Police confirmed one man was shot and killed early Thursday morning. In a press release, CPD said... More >>
10 hours ago Thursday, January 17 2019 Jan 17, 2019 Thursday, January 17, 2019 6:21:00 AM CST January 17, 2019 in News
JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) — The Latest on Missouri Gov. Mike Parson's budget and State of the State address Wednesday... More >>
19 hours ago Wednesday, January 16 2019 Jan 16, 2019 Wednesday, January 16, 2019 9:55:00 PM CST January 16, 2019 in News
JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) — Missouri Gov. Mike Parson is proposing a $351 million bond to repair or replace 250... More >>
19 hours ago Wednesday, January 16 2019 Jan 16, 2019 Wednesday, January 16, 2019 9:29:00 PM CST January 16, 2019 in News
Watch KOMU 8 newscasts and download the KOMU WX app for live coverage and alerts. COLUMBIA - Another winter... More >>
21 hours ago Wednesday, January 16 2019 Jan 16, 2019 Wednesday, January 16, 2019 7:23:00 PM CST January 16, 2019 in Weather
COLUMBIA- Lately, mid-Missourians have had the chance to build a snowman or go sledding and then eventually warm up next... More >>
22 hours ago Wednesday, January 16 2019 Jan 16, 2019 Wednesday, January 16, 2019 7:08:00 PM CST January 16, 2019 in News
COLUMBIA – An expert warns that two snow events, one after the other, may affect your roof. Although city... More >>
22 hours ago Wednesday, January 16 2019 Jan 16, 2019 Wednesday, January 16, 2019 6:38:00 PM CST January 16, 2019 in News
ST. LOUIS (AP) — The man killed after allegedly shooting at St. Louis detectives was facing charges for shooting a... More >>
23 hours ago Wednesday, January 16 2019 Jan 16, 2019 Wednesday, January 16, 2019 5:15:00 PM CST January 16, 2019 in News
SPRINGFIELD (AP) — A former student alleges in a lawsuit that Drury University didn't protect her after she was sexually... More >>
1 day ago Wednesday, January 16 2019 Jan 16, 2019 Wednesday, January 16, 2019 5:06:00 PM CST January 16, 2019 in News
Columbia, MO
Broken Clouds 35°
6pm 34°
7pm 34°
8pm 33°
9pm 33°