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It is perhaps because of the stunning loss to No. 15 seed Norfolk State in last year’s NCAA tournament, but Missouri is being overlooked right now by a number of college basketball experts and analysts.
While everyone remembers the brackets that the Tigers busted in March, it is easy to forget just how talented they were in 2011-12. In fact, Missouri was a dark-horse national championship contender heading into that tournament.
However, this is not the same Tigers team from last year, thanks largely to the departure of the top three scorers.
But there is still plenty of talent remaining in the Missouri cupboard. Lightning-quick guards Michael Dixon and Phil Pressey spearhead a team that is loaded with potential impact transfers.
Those transfers include center Alex Oriakhi from Connecticut, Keion Bell from Pepperdine and Earnest Ross from Auburn.
Additionally, the argument can be made that Missouri will benefit from its move to the SEC in the wins and losses department. While the SEC is probably stronger on top, there were more dangerous teams in the middle of the Big 12 pack that posed as potential upset threats.
If these various players, who were not recruited together and have never really played with each other as teammates, can mesh early on, Missouri could give Kentucky a run for its money on the top of its new conference.