Kentucky will be on the road to face Missouri on Tuesday in the first matchup between the two this year.
This is one that favors Kentucky heavily, as the Tigers are just 7-19 this year, and 2-12 in conference. At one point in the season, Missouri lost 13 straight games, including losses to Georgia, Auburn, Arkansas, Alabama, Ole Miss and South Carolina, all teams that Kentucky has defeated this year. They also lost to Tennessee by 20 points in their most recent game.
The Tigers allow more points per game (71.7) than they average (69). They don’t have a single player averaging 12 points, as their leading scorer, Kevin Puryear, averages 11.5 points. The team as a whole is shooting just 39.7% this year. They don’t rank in the top 100 in the nation in any
Expect this to be a measuring stick game for Kentucky. They’re playing a team that is blatantly subpar to them both on offense and defense. This should be a game where Calipari stresses ball movement (something that is steadily improving for Kentucky) and on-ball defense. Missouri will likely score more than they average due to Kentucky’s faster pace, but don’t consider that an issue unless they get well over 70 points.
Isaiah Briscoe had one of his more efficient games against Mizzou last season, scoring 15 points on 56% shooting from the field. He also had 6 rebounds, 6 assists and 2 steals in an 88-54 win over the Tigers in Rupp.
Derek Willis also played well against Missouri last time around, scoring 18 points, his second-highest scoring total last year, on 67% shooting. He also grabbed 12 rebounds to get the first of his two double-doubles.
Hopefully these two will play well against the Tigers again this season.
With the game being on the road, it won’t be a cakewalk. Missouri will surely pack Mizzou Arena with hopes of an upset. But at the end of the day, this will likely be a game where the Cats score a double-digit win.
Here is everything you'll need for Kentucky's SEC clash with Missouri.
When: Feb. 21, 2017
Location: Mizzou Arena
Game Time: 9 p.m. ET
TV: SEC Network
Online Stream: Watch ESPN
Radio: UK Radio Network with Tom Leach and Mike Pratt (info and affiliates)
John Calipari’s All-Time Record vs. Missouri: 6-2
Kim Anderson’s All-Time Record vs. Kentucky: 0-3
Odds: Kentucky opened as a 16-point favorite. KenPom projected the Cats to be a 17-point favorite.
Prediction: KenPom projects Kentucky to win 84-68 and gives the Wildcats a 94-percent chance of winning at Missouri.