Gametime Primer: Jays vs. Missouri St.

creighton VS.  missouri-st

Sunday February 1, 2PM
Qwest Center Omaha

Radio: Big Sports 590 AM or Bigsports590.com
Sirius Satellite Radio, Ch. 122
TV: Nebraska NET (Cox Channel 12) and NET-HD (Cox Channel 712)
Mediacom (Missouri)
Free Video Streaming Available

Creighton Game Notes | Indiana St. Game Notes

Audio to Listen To
Nothing But Nylon with Nick Bahe (BS 590)

Other Previews
P’Allen Stinnett Questionable for Sunday (OWH)

The Jays finish a 3-game homestand against Missouri St. on Sunday.  Here are the storylines going for Missouri St:

  • The Bears lost their last game on the road against Southern Illinois Thursday night.  The game was originally scheduled for Wednesday but weather conditions moved the game.
  • While the Jays have already played some Valley foes twice already this season, this is the first matchup this season with Missouri St.
  • Chris Cooks is the only Missouri St. player that averages over double figures and is sort of the all-around player for them as he also leads the teams in rebounds and steals and second in assists.    4 other players average above 9 points a game.
  • Missouri St. is 1-7 on the road this season and have a first year coach in Cuonzo Martin
  • Creighton has won the last 5 games in the series and are 15-3 in Omaha.

Boy, Tuesday seems so long ago.  A lot of conversation has revolved around P’Allen Stinnett since then.  Stinnett may not even play due to some knee issues.  But at the same time, I can’t see him not playing.  Then there was talk about team chemistry, altercations and “Creighton Tradition.”  Obviously, fans are ready for the team to play again and I’m sure the players are ready to play again.  At least I’m ready for another game.

Missouri St. has performed as expected towards the bottom of the conference.  Missouri st. actually hasn’t been that bad this season keeping teams close for the most part.  Missouri St’s problem this season is that they have had long scoring droughts in several games this season including going on a 12-1 scoring drought in the last 4 minutes of the game Thursday against Southern Illinois.

The play of Justin Carter and Antoine Young along with the toughness of Casey Harriman the last few games have been bright spots in some of the frustration and inconsistency of this team.  Now if the rest of the team can get back on track, this could be a team that will peak as they head down the stretch.

Since 1980, the average score of the matchups favors the Jays 67-66 and the Jays are favored by 10.5.  P’Allen led the team in scoring both games last season and the Jays beat Missouri St. at the Qwest Center last season 88-67.   The players to key on for Missouri St. is Cooks, but also Senior Spencer Laurie.  He was out with an injury for 4 games and but has come back for the last 2 games.  Senior leadership helps with road games.

With it being Super Bowl Sunday and with coaches wearing sneakers, these are just a few oddities of the day.  Also Kyle Whelliston is making a return after being in attendance at the Indiana St. game.  This guy is just a great lover of basketball and has probably had his fill of MVC gameplay this week going to the UNI game against Illinois St and hanging out with Doug Elgin all week.  It will be interesting to see what the crowd is like with the Super Bowl being played right after the game.

One thing about Creighton tradition–I kind of wonder if it is kind of lost in the shuffle of things.  When looking up information to preview these games or just read about other teams in the conference, it always seems like at some of the other conference schools, there is some special thing going on at halftime to honor someone (like a school’s “Hall of Fame” induction) or a monument to their history (building a Doug Collins statue outside of Redbird Arena).  Where are all of the former players?  Are they able to contribute to this team at all and inspire the players.  I know the likes of Kyle Korver, Anthony Tolliver and Nate Funk aren’t available (due to their playing), but guys like  Jimmy Motz, Pierce Hibma, Nick Bahe who have been around this team this season and I am sure others are around that can talk and instill in the players a little of the “Creighton Tradition.”  What are Ryan Sears, Ben Walker and Rodney Buford doing these days?  Do they ever come back for games?  Dabbert, Deren, Grimes, etc….I think having more of the former players around would help inspire players and to bring these teams season after season together a little better.  Just my two-cents.  But what do I know?

After all is said and done, with the win Tuesday and hopefully a win on Sunday, will we really know anything more than before and after the Drake game?  The Iowa roadtrip will probably tell us more.  Hopefully this game is a confidence booster.  For the first time in a real long time, we get pizza.

Prediction:  Jays 78, Missouri St. 62.

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