Web Extra: Mizzou basketball prepares for NCAA tournament


Four months after back surgery, and probably a month too soon, Porter Jr. tried, and tried and tried to re-create the version of himself Missouri fans had sold out an entire 15,000-seat arena's worth to watch.

Missouri freshman Michael Porter Jr. said after the Tigers' 67-54 loss to Florida State in the opening round of NCAA tournament that he isn't ready to consider whether to enter the National Basketball Association draft.

With that game being a heavy Mizzou crowd and playing in essentially a coin-flip game, I like MU's chances of advancing to the Round of 32.

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They drew an eight-seed in the West Region and will get to play the ninth-seeded Florida State Seminoles in the first round with the game taking place in Nashville. When he was taken out of the game for the final time with 2 minutes and 8 seconds left, Porter walked to the end of the bench, acknowledging each outstretched hand from his teammates before taking a seat next to his dad, who put tapped him twice on the leg to tell him it'd be OK.

It didn't matter that Kassius Robertson's final performance in a Mizzou-emblazoned uniform almost brought Missouri back from a 22-point deficit.

The Florida State Seminoles reached the big dance thanks to a 20-11 mark in the regular season, including a 9-9 conference mark which was good enough for the #8 seed in the ACC tournament. It's great. I knew we were in. "We aren't going to talk about it tomorrow, or tonight either". "That's the toughest part for me, individually, that I can't do some of the things I could do before". I think it was a problem all year. Porter Jr. followed with a foul of his own on a 3-point shot that saved the Seminoles with the shot clock winding down.

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It was only past year that Florida State was upset by Xavier, losing by 25 in the second round of the NCAA Tournament, leading to 12 long months of "what if" and "what happened?"

"I made a decision to try to help the team, and I gave what I could give with what I have right now".

Florida State beat Florida Gulf Coast 86-80 past year in the first round of the tournament before getting blown off the floor by Xavier 91-66. "I thought they maintained their composure and settled down". The Tigers are looking for their first NCAA Tournament win since 2010 as they make their first March Madness trip since the 2012-13 season. Robertson said Missouri missed Barnett's presence "everywhere". But Florida State raced out to an 11-1 start and Top 25 ranking, showing early on this year's team was legit.

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Well, here we are, and MU is not only in the tournament, but they're an eight seed. The Tigers came into the game with eight available players after senior wing Jordan Barnett was suspended for an arrest on suspicion of driving while intoxicated.