Bucknell at No. 12 Missouri
• WHEN/WHERE: 3 p.m. Saturday at Mizzou Arena in Columbia
• TV/RADIO: Metro Sports; KMBZ (980 AM, 98.1 FM)
• ABOUT MISSOURI (10-2, 0-0 SEC): The Tigers are coming off a 97-94 loss to UCLA in their first road game of the season. Missouri now returns to the friendly confines of Mizzou Arena, but it would be hard to blame the Tigers if they still had a bad taste in their mouths from the UCLA loss. Missouri lead by as many as nine late in the second half, only to see its offense disappear as UCLA won in overtime. Junior point guard Phil Pressey was a bright spot, shattering the schools single-game assist record with 19 (the previous high was 13). Missouri lost despite outrebounding UCLA by 14.
• ABOUT BUCKNELL (13-2, 0-0 Patriot): Dont sleep on the Bison, who are off to their best start in school history by matching the 13-2 mark from 1983-84. Bucknell has been solid defensively of late, holding 12 of its last 13 foes to under 40 percent shooting, and the Bison boast a legit big man in 6-foot-11 senior center Mike Muscala, who is averaging 18.9 points and 10.7 rebounds a game. Missouri must contain him and force his teammates to step up, though three more starters Bryson Johnson, Cameron Ayers and Joe Willman all score in double figures.
• BOTTOM LINE: Bucknell, which returns four starters and 11 lettermen from last years 25-10 squad, deserves Missouris respect, and with a subpar effort, the Tigers could get beat. But Missouri does have 72 straight nonconference home victories, and its worth noting the Bison havent beaten a ranked opponent since 2005.
| Terez A. Paylor, firstname.lastname@example.org