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Tigers Have No Answer To Burks

Posted By Nate Jacobson On Jan 8 2011 @ 5:42 pm In Big 12 | No Comments

Missouri’s last trip to Boulder, Colorado was a forgettable one. Colorado, who will be joining the Pac 10 next season, upset the eighth ranked Tigers 89-76 at the Coors Events Center.

The Buffaloes (12-4, 1-0 Big 12) were led by Missouri native Alec Burks. The sophomore guard scored 36 points including several big shots to ice the game. While Missouri has had success this season containing several mid-major teams superstars, they had trouble stopping Burks for Colorado. His performance resembled Georgetown Austin Freeman’s 31-point game on November 30 against the Tigers.

Other than Burks, only five other players scored for the home team. The supporting cast of Cory Higgins, Levi Knutson and Austin Dufault all made major contributions on the offensive end. Higgins was the best of the bunch with 18 points and 10 boards.

The Tigers were led by reserve Michael Dixon with 17 points. With today’s 3-for-10 shooting effort from Matt Pressey it might be time to insert Dixon back in the starting lineup.

Laurence Bowers scored 15 points and Marcus Denmon had a pedestrian 14 points. Bowers made a major impact on the defensive end with eight blocks.

If there was any positive the Tigers can take out of their first Big 12 encounter, it was the return of Phil Pressey from a broken finger. In nine minutes of action, the freshmen had three of the Tigers eight steals. The number of steals was a good sign for the returnee, but not an ideal number for Mike Anderson’s team. The Buffaloes did a great job taking care of the ball in the Tigers press defense.

Analysis: Now at 14-2 the Tigers must forget about this game. The Buffaloes got their far share of bounces and breaks. If those breaks went the Tigers way then it could have been a different game. The Tigers shot a 4-for-16 from three-point range, which is low for how they have been shooting from range throughout the season. I don’t know if it was the high altitude that made the Tigers ice cold or just one of those games, but the Tigers will turn it around offensively as the Big 12 schedule progresses. If there is one glaring concern for the Tigers it is rebounding. Today the Tigers were outrebounded 47-33. The Tigers were dominated on the glass in this game and in the Illinois game. With some big name frontcourts coming up on the schedule this is an area the Tigers must improve on.

The Tigers now move on to open home conference play on Wednesday against Nebraska. This will be the first of two meetings against the Cornhuskers, who will be moving to the Big 10 next season.

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