ST. LOUIS — From the start of the pregame drills until the last minute of Wednesday night’s men’s basketball game against Illinois, not one Missouri player cracked a smile.
Unlike the Illinois players, who were goofing around having dunk contests and chanting “Whoop, there it is” at center court, Missouri was all business. After all, it was facing an opponent it hadn’t beaten in nine years.
Missouri used that focus to beat Illinois 81-68 on Wednesday night at the Scottrade Center in St. Louis. Missouri hasn’t had much to brag about in the last decade of the Braggin’ Rights series, but Wednesday night it finally won. Missouri's speed and athleticism was too much for Illinois causing 22 turnovers. It turned a game that started off as a back-and-forth battle, into an easy victory for the Tigers.