Gameday Pick ‘em #23: Missouri State (9-12; 2-8, 9th in MVC)
“P’Allen Stinnett questionable for Sunday” (OWH)
“Bluejays face turning point against Bears” (OWH)
“Martin’s greatest victory” (Springfield News-Leader)
“Tough test at Creighton” (Springfield News-Leader)
In honor of Super Bowl Sunday, let’s analyze the MSU-CU game as if it were a battle on the gridiron.
- Justin Carter, 6-4, 200 lbs., played both basketball and football at Compton College from 2006-2007, which followed a high school career in which Carter was team MVP as a senior and second-team all-area. He set the Watkins Mill High School single-season (1,488 yards) and single-game (313 yards) rushing records. Plus, his favorite sport team is the New Orleans Saints.
- Casey Harriman was a two-time all-state wide receiver at Battle Creek-Ida Grove.
- Kaleb Korver was a three-year letterman in both basketball and football at Pella High.
- Shane Laurie played two years of football at Kickapoo high school, playing quarterback on varsity his junior year and free safety his junior and senior seasons.
- At 6-4, 220 lbs., Chris Cooks was an all-county wide receiver for Idabel High in Oklahoma.
- Dustin Sitzmann’s favorite sports team, besides CU basketball, is Notre Dame football.
There you have it. Jays win in a walk.
Seriously, though, Missouri State leads the Valley in rebounding margin in conference games (plus-3.3); Creighton is dead last (minus-4.3). Overall for the season, the Bears lead the MVC in scoring defense and are second in turnover margin. And in conference play, MSU is second in the MVC in assist-to-turnover ratio.
They are a tough defensive team that has been on the wrong end of some close losses. Still, they are just now getting healthy and offensively they struggle to compete in most games. The difference for them might be emerging transfer Will Creekmore, a post player who started his career at Boston University. Between Creekmore and freshman Kyle Weems, the California Connection of Kenny Lawson and Kenton Walker will have their hands full.
Who will step up for the Jays with P’Allen possibly riding this one out on the pine? If it is one of the CU post players, that would bode well for the final margin. But if Creighton continues to rely on outside shots and doesn’t take advantage of its great free throw shooting (against a team that fouls a lot), it could be another close MVC game for the Jays.
Creighton Otter: Booker Woodfox (15)
Dance Cam Guy: Justin Carter (18)
Panon: Woodfox (17)
Mrs. Creighton Otter: Carter (17)
Mrs. Dance Cam Guy: Carter (16)
Creighton Otter: Jays by 7
Dance Cam Guy: Jays by 13
Panon: Jays by 14
Mrs. Creighton Otter: Jays by 12
Mrs. Dance Cam Guy: Jays by 10