Missouri Basketball: Tigers host Georgia in a close series

COLUMBIA, MO - DECEMBER 19: Michael Porter Jr.
COLUMBIA, MO - DECEMBER 19: Michael Porter Jr. /

Since joining the SEC, the Missouri Tigers and Georgia Bulldogs have faced each other a grand total, 10 times. Tonight, the Tigers look to extend their season win total.

Georgia leads this series, 6-4. However, the Tigers are shooting well, and doing better at limiting their opponents’ opportunities to score. Currently, Missouri is the 45th-ranked team in field goal percentage, and 29th in defensive field goal percentage.

So far, Missouri holds an even (1-1) record in conference play, this season. The Tigers had a convincing road win over South Carolina, which was coming off of a 2016-17 Final Four run, but lost a close match-up against Florida.

Many factor questionable – poor, even – officiating into the Tigers’ recent loss. While I can’t disagree with that assessment, there’s some perspective which can come from the loss: It was Missouri’s fourth of the season.

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There were a number of ticky-tack penalties, and some were completely out of thin air. I’m still not sure how Mizzou is supposed to effectively play defense when Jeremiah Tilmon gets whistled for being within a six-foot perimeter of an opponent’s player.

All whining aside, Mizzou should match-up well against the Bulldogs. Georgia is one game better than the Tigers, including a 65-46 win over Alabama.

For the Bulldogs, senior forward Yaten Maten is averaging 20 points per game, while junior guard William Jackson, II has averaged 10.1 points per game. Georgia averages a little more than seven points per game better (72.8-65.3) than its opponents so far, this season.

Next: Drew Lock returning for senior year

The Tigers bring their own firepower however, in Jordan Barnett, Jontay Porter and Kassius Robertson. Unfortuantely, I predict the Tigers to lose a close one tonight – I hope I’m wrong. Georgia 71, Missouri 67.