Missouri coach Kim Anderson has stressed the need for front-court production beyond what freshman Kevin Puryear has been providing early in the season.
To that end, Anderson inserted senior Ryan Rosburg into the starting lineup Tuesday against Northwestern in the third-place game of the CBE Hall of Fame Classic at the Sprint Center.
“Being a senior and being a kid that has played and started a lot of games, I needed to do something,” Rosburg said. “This is a step, but there is a lot more to come.”
The decision was rewarded when Rosburg scored a season-high eight points and yanked down a game- and season-high nine rebounds, the most he has had since Feb. 25, 2014, at Georgia — a span of 43 games — in 28 minutes.
“It was great,” Anderson said. “I made the decision last night, and I talked to him this morning about it. It really wasn’t anything against (sophomore forward) Jakeenan (Gant). … In the case of Northwestern, with (center Alex) Olah, we needed some size. Ryan is a senior, and he answered the challenge. Hopefully, he will continue to do that.”
BY THE NUMBERS
Northwestern’s shooting percentage from three-point range, going 10 of 23. It ties the most threes against Missouri this season (Wofford).
Missouri’s assist-to-turnover ratio, breaking an ugly two-game stretch when the Tigers had 18 assists against 31 turnovers in losses to Xavier and Kansas State.
Tod Palmer, @todpalmer