Illini Wonk
Wednesday, December 21, 2005
  Braggin' Rights Border War
Tonight at 7:00 p.m. on ESPN2 is one of the best non-conference rivalries in College Basketball--the annual Braggin' Rights game between Illinois and Missouri at the Savvis Center in St. Louis. Illinois are winners of five straight (for a complete history click here and highlights click here) which means that Illini seniors Dee Brown and James Augustine have never lost a game and Missouri senior Jimmy McKinney is staring at his final chance for a win.

The experience of their seniors will be necessary for the Illini as Sean Pruitt and Jamar Smith will be on the court at the event for the first time and Brian Randle will not be at 100%.

Despite being heavily favored, the Illini are wary of the Tigers, which is good considering that Mizzou is desperate. Mark Tupper says that Missouri coach Quinn Snyder is likely on his way out. For his part, Snyder's hoping for a miracle tonight. That's because, according to Jeff Gordon of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch, the Illini are much, much better.

Will Leitch of Deadspin is going home to St. Louis to watch the game as is apparently everyone else in the city that has been suffering through other sports seasons.

To watch an interview with Bruce Weber about the game, click here. For one with Dee Brown, click here. In case these aren't enough preview articles for you, click on my tag Braggin.
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