7:02 pm
December 18

Xavier @ Missouri

Who will WIN this matchup?

Xavier Musketeers (7-4)

@ Missouri Tigers (6-3)


Current odds:

Xavier Musketeers: (-150)

Missouri Tigers: (+130)


• The  line for this game is Xavier by 2.5 points.

• Missouri aims for its fourth consecutive win – and one of its best of the season – when it hosts Xavier on Tuesday. The Musketeers have won five of their last six contests following an early three-game slide but are looking for their first victory on the road. The Tigers are playing for the first time since an 80-64 triumph over Oral Roberts on Dec. 7 in which they made a season-high 12 3-pointers. It was the highest-scoring output of the campaign for Missouri, which wants to play at a slower pace and lean on its defense.

• After losing 62-47 at Cincinnati on Dec. 8, Xavier bounced back with a 95-77 win over Eastern Kentucky on Saturday. The Musketeers shot 71.4 percent and had six players score in double figures.

• The Musketeers are efficient at the offensive end, shooting 49.8 percent, but they have converted a meager 33.2 percent of their attempts from 3-point range. Forward Naji Marshall (13.2 points, 7.3 rebounds) leads the team in scoring, but guards Quentin Goodin (12.7, five assists) and Paul Scruggs (12.7 points) are close behind. Scruggs has scored in double figures in eight straight games and forward Tyrique Jones (10.7 points, 8.1 rebounds) leads the Big East with 3.5 offensive rebounds per contest.

• The Tigers are the SEC’s top 3-point shooting team at 39 percent thanks to sharpshooters Jordan Geist (12.7 points) and Mark Smith (11.6, 5.1 rebounds). Missouri has been tough on the glass, outrebounding seven of its nine opponents – with Jeremiah Tilmon (9.7 points, 6.2 rebounds) leading the way. Kevin Puryear (9.6 points, 4.9 rebounds) gives the Tigers a veteran post presence, and freshman Torrence Watson (5.1 points) has scored 12 points in back-to-back games.

• Xavier has won four straight meetings, with Missouri’s last win occurring in 2001.

• The Musketeers are 19-6 against SEC teams since 2008.

• Missouri is 6-0 when holding opponents under 70 points.

StreakSmarter Pick
Missouri Tigers