Missouri barely shot 30 percent from three-point range as a team in 2016-17, but help officially is on the way.
New Tigers coach Cuonzo Martin announced Thursday that Canisius shooting guard Kassius Robertson — a graduate-student transfer, who is eligible immediately — will play his final season in Columbia.
He started 66 of 67 games during the last two seasons for the Golden Griffins, averaging 15.1 points per game during that span.
Robertson — a 6-foot-3, 180-pound shooter from Toronto — shot 40.4 percent from long range as a sophomore and 41.0 percent last season, when he averaged a career-high 16.1 points per game.
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“We’re thrilled to welcome Kassius Robertson into our Mizzou basketball family,” Martin said in a statement from the athletic department. “Kassius is an experienced leader and someone who knows what it takes to be successful at this level.
“His skillset goes beyond shooting the basketball, as his overall ability to impact the game will be a huge benefit to our program. Best of all, Kassius has an undergraduate degree in hand, and we look forward to him being an outstanding role model and teammate.”
Robertson — a second-team All-Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference performer who also averaged 3.0 rebounds and 2.1 assists during the last two seasons — chose Missouri over Georgia Tech.
“I really appreciated the vibe I got from the Mizzou coaching staff,” Robertson said in a statement. “Coach Martin’s level of realness was unmatched, really. He and I have already had so many conversations. Coach told me wasn’t going to be a salesman and bombard me, which is what happens a lot. This was about an opportunity and what he saw in me.”
Robertson, who graduated with a bachelor’s degree in health and wellness from Canisius, also was impressed by MU’s setting and facilities.
“Mizzou’s campus was so nice,” he said. “’I was really impressed with that. So many people around and so many different buildings and facilities. Best of all, Mizzou Arena is beautiful. I got so excited walking around in there, and I really can’t wait to play in front of Mizzou’s fans.”
He joins a roster with precious few shooters.
Rising junior point guard Terrence Phillips led the Tigers in three-point shooting at 35.6 percent last season. Fellow juniors Cullen VanLeer, who shot 33.3 percent, and Jordan Geist (28.6) struggled from beyond the arc.
Forward Kevin Puryear was Mizzou’s third-leading three-point shooter (32.3 percent) followed by rising senior Jordan Barnett (30.0 percent).