The Missouri Tigers are back at .500 after a road win over Vanderbilt. Mizzou was back to full strength with the return of Mark Smith and Jeremiah Tilmon.
Mizzou bounced back from a road loss to Arkansas with a 61-52 win at Vanderbilt over the struggling Commodores led by first year head coach Jerry Stackhouse.
Vandy is now only 1-14 in SEC play, while the Tigers improved to 6-9 in conference play, which is tied for 10th.
Mark Smith and Jeremiah Tilmon both returned from injury but neither made a huge impact on the game. Regardless, Reed Nikko and Xavier Pinson helped the Tigers win their 14th game of the season.
Studs @ Vanderbilt
Stud #1: Xavier Pinson
Pinson continues to play well and lead the Tigers in scoring. Against the Commodores, he scored 17 points on 6/12 shooting while adding five rebounds.
The sophomore point guard is known for great passing vision and accuracy, but he only had one assist to four turnovers.
However, in what was a sloppy game, Pinson still led the offense while only playing 21 minutes due to foul trouble.
Stud #2: Reed Nikko
Even though Tilmon received some minutes, Nikko still showed out with 14 points and five boards in just 18 minutes.
He didn’t miss a single shot on the night, going 5/5 from the field and 4/4 from the free throw line.
As the season progresses, Nikko has started to give Mizzou fans something they might miss next year after he graduates.
Stud #3: Mitchell Smith
Mitchell Smith once again makes this list without filling up the stat sheet. He did grab a game-high 12 rebounds, but his energy and effort helped power Missouri to a scrappy win.
He made all three of his free throws and he connected on a three-pointer while also contributing a blocked shot in just 26 minutes.
Duds @ Vanderbilt
Dud #1: Dru Smith
Dru Smith did a great job of slowing the game down and controlling the pace, but he struggled offensively for a portion of the night. He shot 4/14 from the field, 1/4 from three, and had four turnovers.
He scored nine points and added two rebounds and three assists, but considering he played 39 minutes, he left more to be desired.
Dud #2: Kobe Brown
Coming off of a great 17 and 10 game at Arkansas, Kobe Brown scored just four points on 1/4 shooting and had two turnovers.
As has been the trend with this team, the momentum from the previous game didn’t carry over much and Brown underperformed.
Dud #3: Tray Jackson/Cuonzo Martin
I don’t know how many times I have to do this, but Tray Jackson again makes this list because Cuonzo Martin didn’t play him. Missouri played 10 players and none of them are named Tray Jackson.
Jackson has been great when he has received minutes, even though he is mostly misused, yet Martin won’t play him consistently.
Hopefully he finds a role and doesn’t head into the transfer portal.