Ole Miss and Missouri basketball are near mirror images of each other.
Like the Rebels, Missouri has only won four SEC games.
But they’ve accomplished that feat in an even stranger way than Ole Miss (13-12, 4-8 SEC). The Tigers (12-13, 4-8 SEC) beat Florida by 16 early, then turned around and lost to MSU by 27 and Bama by 14. Other weird outcomes include a 22-point loss to South Carolina, a seventeen point loss to A&M, and most recently a 12-point win over No. 11 Auburn.
The Rebels, on the other hand, are coming off a big win against Mississippi State at home and a close loss against the No. 10 Kentucky Wildcats in Rupp Arena. To keep any hopes at postseason play alive, they have to win against Missouri, and a decisive win would help a lot, as it could give Breein Tyree valuable minutes of rest heading into Saturday’s home match-up against Alabama.
The Rebels certainly can’t take anything for granted though, especially when traveling. They have no room for error and cannot afford to drop this one.
Tyree leads the SEC in conference play with 24 points per game and is now eighth all-time in Ole Miss history in scoring. He only needs 18 points tonight to pass current Ole Miss athletic director and resident badass Keith Carter.
For Missouri. Junior guard Dru Smith leads the way with just over 12 points per game, while fellow junior guard Mark Smith averages 10.9. The Tigers struggle a bit on the glass but so does Ole Miss, unfortunately. This game will likely be decided by which team’s guards can make the most plays and limit turnovers.
Ole Miss has to continue to get solid play from Khadim Sy and KJ Buffen if it wants to find an advantage down low. Both Sy and Buffen have really stepped up their games of late and will need to consistently attack the glass with a purpose and intensity to assist the guards in winning this one.
The Rebels have been dominant of late against Mizzou, winning 11 of its last 12 games including last year’s 73-68 win in Columbia.
Line: Missouri -1
How to watch
Where: Mizzou Arena, Columbia, Mo.
When: 7:30pm CST
TV: SEC Network
Online streaming: WatchESPN