Originally written on Fox Sports South  |  Last updated 6/25/14
Record: 23-10 overall, 11-7 in SEC Seed: 9-seed in Midwest Region RPI: 36 Coach: Frank Haith, second season, second NCAA tournament appearance Last NCAA appearance: Lost to 15-seed Norfolk State in first round (2012) Notable wins: Florida, VCU, Illinois, Ole Miss Key Player Its been an erratic season for the Tigers veteran point guard, Phil Pressey, the SEC preseason Player Of the Year, who was asked to take over a team filled with recruits and Division I transfers. Pressey led the conference in assists at 6.7 per game but he also averaged 6.4 turnovers against ranked opponents and he saw his field goal (38.7) and three-point (36.1) percentages drop from last season (42.8 and 38.7, respectively). But as goes Pressey, so goes the Tigers. If he can improve his shot selection, he has the ability to get Missouri past the second round for the first time since 2009. X-Factor The 6-foot-9, 255-pound Alex Oriakhi is averaging 11.1 points per game, ranks as the Tigers top rebounder (8.6 per game) and is a load on defense with the strength to muscle up in the paint and a 7-foot-3 wingspan that allows him to contest shots (1.6 per game). He is without question a major presence inside for the Tigers, but Oriakhis biggest asset may be his experience in March. While Pressey and Laurence Bowers have played in the NCAAs for the Tigers, neither can match Oriakhis resume in this tourney: he made two trips with UConn before transferring after last season, including their 2011 title run. First Opponent The Colorado State Rams (25-8, 11-5 MWC) are making consecutive tourney appearances for the first time since 1989-90 and pose a touch matchup for the Tigers inside. While Missouri is second in the nation, averaging 45 rebounds per game, it cant match Colorado States duo of 6-10 center Colton Iverson, who averaged 9.8 boards per game to go along with 14.7 points, while 6-5 forward Pierce Hornung is grabbing 9.2 boards per, 45.4 percent of which come on the offensive glass. While the Rams were shaky down the stretch, dropping four of their last eight, seven of their eight losses were against NCAA tourney teams. Did You Know The Tigers are the only team major-conference team that has had six players average double digits in scoring with Pressey, Oriakhi, Bowers (14.4), Jabari Brown (13.7), Keion Bell (11.1) and Earnest Ross (10.3).
MORE FROM YARDBARKER

Peyton Manning sets NFL touchdown passing record

Report: CJ Spiller suffers broken collarbone

DeMarco Murray sets record with another 100-yard game

Report: Things got 'ugly' in Bears' locker room after loss

Redskins bench Kirk Cousins for Colt McCoy

Rams beat Seahawks thanks to gutsy fake punt call

LIKE WHAT YOU SEE?
GET THE DAILY NEWSLETTER:

Brian Kelly unloads on officials for pass interference call

Brett Favre: I got calls about playing last season

Joseph Randle partners with underwear company after arrest

Report: Seahawks asked about Julius Thomas, Jordan Cameron

Florida fans chant for Will Muschamp to be fired

Gennady Golovkin scores second-round knockout win

10 takeaways from NFL Week 7

Video: Alec Burks breaks Kobe Bryant's ankles

WATCH: Sean Payton has tense exchange with reporter

Darnell Dockett mocks Raiders fans with whiteboard

WATCH: Tony Romo nearly runs over Alex Rodriguez

WATCH: Prince Amukamara pulls Dwayne Harris' hair

What was the meaning behind Doug Baldwin's TD celebration?

Luke Kuechly ejected after questionable call

WATCH: Giovanni Bernard gets leveled by Vontae Davis

WATCH: Rams run awesome trick play for punt return TD

Kyle Orton shaves his epic mustache

Florida State beats Notre Dame 31-27 in thriller

College Basketball News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

Favre: I got calls about playing last season

10 takeaways from NFL Week 7

Report: Marshall calls out Jay Cutler

Darnell Dockett mocks Raiders fans

Brian Kelly unloads on officials

WATCH: Rams run punt return trick play for TD

Joseph Randle now an underwear spokesman?

Ex-Trojans RB escorted out after USC game

FSU tops Notre Dame in thriller

Fans chant for Muschamp's head

Popovich zings Suns owner

Golden Tate reacts to Percy Harvin trade

Today's Best Stuff
For Bloggers

Join the Yardbarker Network for more promotion, traffic, and money.

Company Info
Help
What is Yardbarker?

Yardbarker is the largest network of sports blogs and pro athlete blogs on the web. This site is the hub of the Yardbarker Network, where our editors and algorithms curate the best sports content from our network and beyond.