Mizzou Basketball faces Northwestern Thursday

From the University of Missouri

Missouri Tigers vs. Northwestern Wildcats

Date: Nov. 28, 2013

Tip-Off: 9:30 p.m. CT

Arena: Orleans Arena (9,500)

TV: ESPNU (Kanoa Leahey and Bruce Pearl)

Radio: Tiger Radio Network (Tom Ackerman and Gary Link)

Rankings: Missouri - RV / RV - Associated Press / USA Today Coaches' Poll

Northwestern - None

Series: Eighth Meeting; Mizzou leads 4-3; Last- 79-67 Northwestern win on Dec. 5, 1968, in Evanston.


Missouri: Frank Haith (Elon '88); 182-117 overall (9th season) 53-16 at Mizzou (3rd season)

Northwestern: Chris Collins (Duke '96) 4-2 overall (1st season); Same at Northwestern

For Openers...

> Mizzou Basketball heads to Las Vegas this week as the Tigers play two games at the Orleans Arena in the 2013 Las Vegas Invitational ... Missouri will face Northwestern (Nov. 28) and Nevada (Nov. 29) in a "classic" format ... Missouri also faces the fourth team in the field, UCLA, on Dec. 7 at Mizzou Arena, but that game is not part of the tournament.

> Missouri is playing on Thanksgiving Day for the second consecutive year ... Missouri topped Stanford,  78-70, in the opening round of the Battle 4 Atlantis event last season on Thanksgiving Day.

> Mizzou is making its first trip to Las Vegas since 2005 (74-71 loss to UNLV on Feb. 9, 2005) ... Missouri is 1-2 in Las Vegas overall, including an 81-79 win over the No. 7 Runnin' Rebels, on Feb. 13, 1988.

> Missouri will be looking for a 6-0 start for the first time since the 2011-12 season ... The Tigers have been 6-0 twice since 2006-07, starting 14-0 in 2011-12 and 9-0 in 2006-07.

> Mizzou will be playing its second and third neutral-site games of the season this week ... The Tigers earned a quality, 92-80, win over Hawaii at Kansas City's Sprint Center on Nov. 16 ... Missouri is 12-4 on a neutral court under Head Coach Frank Haith ... In November tournaments, Haith and his Tigers are a solid 9-1 (including exempt games), with the lone loss coming to eventual NCAA Champion Louisville last season ... Missouri finished third in the 2012 Battle 4 Atlantis event last year and won the 2011 CBE title at Kansas City's Sprint Center under Haith.

> Mizzou is coming off a 78-64 victory against IUPUI on Monday ... The Tigers got a combined 46 points from Jabari Brown (24) andJordan Clarkson (22), while Johnathan Williams, III produced his first career double-double with 10 points and 10 rebounds.

> Williams has been fantastic on the glass for Missouri early in his rookie season and leads the club with 9.2 rebounds per game ... His 17 rebounds in the Nov. 23 victory against Gardner-Webb are the most by a freshman in college basketball this season and the most by a Tiger freshman since 2001.

> Mizzou continues to feast in the month of November over the last few seasons ... The Tigers are 16-1 in November since 2011 and are 43-6 in November since 2006 ... In fact, Mizzou has won 50-of-53 regular season non-league games (regardless of site or month) since Dec. 12, 2009, dating back to a road loss at Oral Roberts.

> Missouri has just one starter returning from last season's 23-11 team (Jabari Brown) and no players are back that saw action on that 30-5 club during the 2011-12 campaign ... In fact, Missouri's top scorer (Brown), rebounder (Williams III) and assist man (Clarkson) have all played less than one full season for the Tigers.

> Mizzou Basketball will face its second of three opponents from the state of Illinois this year ... The Tigers defeated Southern Illinois (72-59) on Nov. 12 and will also meet Illinois in St. Louis on Dec. 21 in the annual Bud Light Braggin' Rights Game at Scottrade Center.

> Missouri has not faced a member of the Big Ten Conference (outside of the annual showdown vs. Illinois) since beating Purdue (73-63) at Mizzou Arena on Dec. 8, 2007 ... Mizzou also faced Michigan State that season.

Mizzou Basketball Cliffs...

> Mizzou Basketball returns to action Thursday and will meet Northwestern for the first time since the 1968-69 season ... Missouri leads the all-time series against the Wildcats, 4-3, but Northwestern has won three straight in the series and is 1-0 vs. Mizzou on a neutral court (NW won 67-60 in Memphis in 1965) ... Missouri's last win in the series was an 84-69 decision in Columbia in 1961.

Frank Haith will face Northwestern for the second time in his career ... The Miami Hurricanes fell 61-59 in Evanston, Ill., on Nov. 28, 2006, as part of the ACC/Big Ten Challenge.

> Speaking of Haith, the Tiger Boss is back on the sidelines ... Haith will coach his 200th career game on Thursday and is a spectacular 53-16 in two seasons at Missouri ... Haith was the fastest coach in school history to 50 wins and will have just one starter back for the second consecutive campaign.

> Haith is 9-0 all-time in openers and Thursday's game marks his personal season-opener after the club went 5-0 under the guidance of Associate Head Coach Tim Fuller.

> In Las Vegas, Haith is 3-0 in tournament play ... Miami went 3-0 at the Las Vegas Holiday Hoops Classic in 2010 with wins over Oral Roberts, Rice and Akron.

> Mizzou is one of three remaining unbeaten teams in the Southeastern Conference ... The Tigers are joined by Texas A&M (5-0) and Ole Miss (3-0).

> Although Missouri leaves Mizzou Arena for two games, the Tigers do boast a 22-game homecourt winning streak dating back to the final home game of the 2011-12 campaign ... That winning streak ranks No. 1 nationally, tied with Belmont ... The Bruins should extend that streak on Tuesday vs. Brescia (NAIA) before hosting VCU on Dec. 1 ... The 22 consecutive home wins by Missouri is tied for the fifth-longest streak in school history and is the longest since the team won 32 consecutive home games from 2007-2010

> Mizzou has been very good at home under Head Coach Frank Haith's teams ... The Tigers are 37-1 at Mizzou Arena since 2011-12 and were a perfect 17-0 at home last season.

> Mizzou boasts a 141-21 (.870) record at home since the building opened in 2004-05 ... The Tigers are also 88-4 at home since 2008-09, amounting to an incredible .955 winning percentage.

> Non-conference opponents have not enjoyed their stops in Columbia, Mo., over the last few seasons and the Tigers have raced to an incredible 77 consecutive wins at home vs. non-league opposition since the end of the 2005-06 campaign ... Missouri's last non-conference loss at home came vs. Sam Houston State in the 2005 Preseason NIT, but since then, Missouri has gone nearly eight full seasons without a loss.

> Missouri returns home on Dec. 5 to face West Virginia in the inaugural Big 12 / SEC Challenge ... Mizzou then hosts fellow Las Vegas Invitational participant, UCLA, on Dec. 7 ... Both games will be nationally televised.

> Missouri is being led in scoring by the dynamic junior tandem of Jabari Brown (19.2 ppg) and Jordan Clarkson (18.8) ... The duo is combining for 38.0 points per game, second in the Southeastern Conference, just ahead of the LSU tandem of Johnny O'Bryant(18.3) and Andre Stringer (18.3) and behind the Auburn pair of Chris Denson (21.8) and KT Harrell (18.3).

> Missouri is receiving votes in both the Associated Press and USA Today Coaches Top 25 polls ... The Tigers are ranked No. 41 by the Coaches and No. 40 by the media.

Jordan Clarkson recorded the first 30-point game of the SEC season on Nov. 12 and logged the 26th 30-point game during Missouri's SEC / Big 12 eras ... Clarkson needed just 18 shots to reach 31 points (12-of-18 FGs), and is one of just two Tigers during the two eras to have 30+ points, 5+ assists and zero turnovers ... Clarence Gilbert had a ridiculous 43 points, nine assists and zero turnovers vs. Iowa State in a four overtime win on Jan. 13, 2001.

> Head Coach Frank Haith enters his third season at Missouri and will look to lead the Tigers to their third consecutive 20-win campaign ... Only Norm StewartQuin Snyder and Mike Anderson have enjoyed three 20-win seasons at Mizzou ... Stewart of course led the way with 17 20-win campaigns ... Snyder and Anderson each had three.

> Missouri has won at historic levels over the last five seasons ... In fact the Tigers have won 23+ games each of the last five seasons.

> The five consecutive 20-win seasons is a school record and Missouri's five consecutive trips to the NCAA Tournament is the longest active streak in the Southeastern Conference.

> Mizzou Arena has been the site of two undefeated home seasons in its history ... Missouri was 18-0 in 2008-09 and was 17-0 at home last season ... Hearnes Center, the former home of Missouri Basketball, was the site of five undefeated home campaigns (1974-75, 1980-81, 1988-89, 1989-90 and 1993-94).

> Missouri has been incredible at home in non-conference games the last six years ... Overall the Tigers have won 77 consecutive non-league games at Mizzou Arena and are 88-4 at home (all games) since 2008-09.

> Since 2006-07 (70-0) the club's margin of victory has been 26.3 points in those non-league home tilts.

> Mizzou will have two transfers sitting out this season ... Zach Price transferred from Louisville, where the 6-foot-10 forward was a member of the Cardinals' NCAA National Championship team ... Deuce Bello transferred from Baylor ... Both will be classified as redshirt juniors next season.

> Mizzou will be on national television a school-record  20 times this season ... That number has grown each of Mizzou's two years in the SEC ... The Tigers were on national TV 18 times last season, which was also a school record.

> Mizzou was picked fifth in the Southeastern Conference's preseason media poll ... Kentucky was the projected league champion.