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Nuts & Bolts: Kansas @ Missouri Preview

Note:  Before I get things started with this one I wanted to point out that in our ongoing effort to provide good, meaningful stuff in preparation for each game I've added a closer look at some statistical analysis within Nuts & Bolts.  Hope this makes your gameday preview a little more insightful.

Kansas vs. Missouri

No. 21/24 Kansas (19-4, 8-0 Big 12) hits the road for its third ESPN Big Monday battle at Border Showdown foe Missouri (20-4, 7-2). Kansas extended its season-long winning streak to eight games with a 78-67 win against Oklahoma State Saturday. Missouri has won three straight and seven of its last eight games after its 82-68 win at Iowa State Saturday. Kansas is looking for its third straight win at Mizzou Arena and its sixth straight overall against the Tigers. Kansas has won 12 straight Big 12 regular-season games and 15 consecutive against conference foes dating back to last year.

Denver's Thoughts...

Kansas and Missouri likely both ranked, Big Monday , Big 12 conference implications, what more could you ask for.  It's been a while since a Kansas vs. Missouri game has had the meaning that this one does and I for one am pretty excited about it.  Tonight is going to be tough but it's not impossible.  First order of business is going to be weathering the adrenaline storm immediately following tip.  As we know from Leo Lyons this is basically the game of the year for Missouri, if Kansas can avoid a horribly slow start and keep the fans and Missouri players from riding an emotional high to a big lead that will be a good start.  Thereafter, limit turnovers, control the boards, play solid half court defense as we normally do and avoid a bad shooting night.  Do these and this game is winnable.  That said it's Missouri and it's in Columbia.  This could me reminiscent of our game in Manhattan last year where our opponent and their fans are just too jacked up for us to overcome.  I really hate to pick against my own team, I am sure I'll catch some grief here and I would love for you to convince me otherwise but I think we're bound to lose at some point and tonight is a game we come out of with the first tally in the loss column during conference play.

Final Score Prediction  Missouri  83  Kansas 77

I hope I'm wrong on this one and if I am I'll say Kansas by 4 with Tyrel Reed icing the game late!!

Team Per Game Stat Comparison

Per game stats for both teams as well as their opponents can be fairly revealing in some situations.  These two teams have a lot in common.  Two areas talked about already and they go hand in hand are steals per game and turnovers per game.  Kansas will need to find a way to take care of the ball and keep Missouri from easy baskets in transition.

Kansas KU 77.9 48.6 72.6 37.4 41.1 12.3 26.1 16.3 14.1 7.1 4.6 19.5
Missouri MIZZ 84.3 48.1 66.1 36.6 40.7 13.7 24.4 19.1 12.8 10.8 4.1 20.2
Kansas KU Opponents 64.7 38.4 71.5 32.6 34.7 11.7 20.0 12.1 14.4 6.7 3.4 20.6
Missouri MIZZ Opponents 66.5 41.1 66.7 31.4 38.8 12.4 23.6 11.7 19.4 6.7 2.4 19.9


more notes, stats and preview after the jump...

Rank and Records

Rank and Records KU
RPI #15
Strength of Schedule #42
Overall 19-4
Conference 8-0
Home 14-1
Away 4-2
Top 25 1-1
RPI Top 50 6-2
About Kansas

Kansas is one of six teams in NCAA Division I that remain undefeated in conference play. KU takes its longest winning streak of the season, eight games, into the Missouri contest. KU is looking for its fifth straight road win of the season on Monday. The Jayhawks are averaging 77.9 points per game and giving up 64.8 for a +13.1 scoring margin. KU leads the Big 12 in field goal percentage defense at 48.4 percent, rebound defense at 31.7 and rebound margin at +7.0. KU has shot 50 percent or better in five of its eight Big 12 games for a league-best 51.2 field goal
percentage in conference play. Conversely, KU has held its last two, seven of its last nine and 15 of 22 opponents this season to under 40 percent shooting.

Junior guard Sherron Collins leads KU in scoring at 18 points per game, which is third most in the Big 12. Named a Bob Cousy Award finalist and Wooden Award Mid-Season candidate, Collins has led the team in scoring in 17 of 23 games this season. He has a team-high 49 three-point field goals and 116 assists. Sophomore center Cole Aldrich is next in scoring at 14.6 points per game and leads the Big 12 in blocked shots with a 2.5 per game average. He is second in the league in field goal percentage at 61.9 percent. He and Oklahoma’s Blake Griffin are the only two Big 12 players to average a double-double with Aldrich at 14.6 ppg and 10.2 rpg. Aldrich has a team-best 13 double-doubles on the season after his 12 points and career-high 18 rebounds against Oklahoma State. After his 12 points against OSU, freshman guard Tyshawn Taylor is scoring 9.7 points per game and his 28 steals are tied for the team best with Collins.  He has been named Phillips 66 Big 12 Rookie of the Week three times this season. Freshman forward Marcus Morris (7.6 ppg) and sophomore guards Tyrel Reed (7.3 ppg) and Brady Morningstar (7.3 ppg) are next in scoring. Marcus Morris has started the last six games and is second on the team with 5.0 rebounds per contest, which leads the Big 12 freshmen class. Morningstar leads the Big 12 in three-point field goal percentage at 45.6 percent, while Reed is making 40.5 from beyond the arc. Both have made key threes for the Jayhawks. Junior guard/forward Mario Little has averaged 12.5 points in his last two games and is scoring 6.0 on the season. He is shooting 62.8 percent from the field in his 11 games played this year. Little is scoring 7.9 ppg in Big 12 play. He missed the first 12 games of the season due to injuries. Freshman forward Markieff Morris, twin of Marcus, is scoring 5.0 points per outing with a 4.6 rebound average, third among Big 12 freshmen.

About Missouri

Like Kansas, Missouri is one of the hottest teams in the nation posting an 11-2 record in its last 13 games.  The Tigers have won three straight and seven of their last eight games. Missouri is 14-0 at home this season and has won 15 straight at Mizzou Arena, which ranks tied for the seventh-longest home court winning streak in NCAA Division I. MU leads the Big 12 in scoring at 84.2 points per game, scoring
margin at +17.7, three-point field goal percentage defense at 30.9 percent, assists at 19.5, steals at 10.7, turnover margin at +6.6 and assist-to-turnover ratio at 1.5. Missouri opponents are scoring 66.5 points per game. MU is deep as it has 10 players averaging 10 or more minutes per game and no one more than 27 minutes per outing. Senior forward DeMarre Carroll leads the team in scoring at 17.3 points, which is fifth in the Big 12. He also leads the team with seven rebounds per contest and is second on the squad with 41 steals and field goal percentage at 58.1 percent. Senior forward Leo Lyons is second in scoring at 14.7 ppg and rebounds at 5.7 rpg. He has 17 blocked shots which is behind Carroll’s 20 and junior forward Keith Ramsey’s 20. Ramsey is scoring 4.3 points per game. Senior guard Matt Lawrence leads MU with 53 three pointers to complement his 8.8 scoring average. Junior guard J.T. Tiller has a 7.7 scoring average and he leads the team with 46 steals. Tiller is second on the team with 81 assists, just behind junior guard Zaire Taylor’s 84. Taylor is scoring 5.7 points per contest. Freshman guard Marcus
Denmon is scoring 7.3 points per game and he has made 27 three pointers. Freshman guard Kim English is just behind Denmon in scoring at 7.2 ppg and he has made 31 threes. Freshman guard Miguel Paul (3.8 ppg), sophomore forward Justin Safford (3.3 ppg) and freshman forward Lawrence Bowers (3.6 ppg) are
also seeing time on the floor for MU.

Meet the Opposing Coach

Mike Anderson is in his third season at Missouri with a 54-32 record. Overall, Anderson is 143-73 in his seventh season, which included four years at the University of Alabama at Birmingham. His 20 wins this season are his first at Missouri and fifth for his career. While at UAB, Anderson guided the Blazers to four 20-win seasons and four postseason appearances - one NIT and three NCAA Tournaments. His 2004 team advanced to the Sweet 16 of the NCAA Tournament, ending its season with a loss to Kansas (100-74) in St. Louis. Anderson is 0-5 against KU in his career.

The Series

Kansas leads the all-time series with Missouri, 166-93, including a 63-52 record in games played Columbia (2-2 in Mizzou Arena). KU has won five straight, nine of the last 11 and 14 of the past 17 match-ups with MU. Last season's sweep of MU was the fifth KU regular-season sweep of MU since 2002. The teams split the two other series. Since the inception of the Big 12, KU holds an 19-8 series advantage against Missouri - 17-7 in regular-season play and 2-1 in the conference championship. Monday’s game will mark the 38th KU-MU game with one or both of the teams ranked. 

A Trip Down Memory Lane: Missouri

This is my look at favorite tiger opponents of the past

Norm Stewart...hated him when he was there but as I have mentioned he made it fun

Kareem Rush...hey he's Brandon's brother, that's worth something

Jason of the easiest Tigers to hate ever

Derek Grimm...2nd easiest Tiger to hate

Kelly Thames...Very good and likeable Tiger, he could've been great minus the injury

The Haley Twins...we've got twins we complain about and theirs were much worse

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