COLUMBIA, Mo. (AP) - The University of Missouri's first year as the northernmost outpost of the Southeastern Conference cost the school an extra $1 million in unanticipated travel expenses.
The Columbia Daily Tribune reports Missouri spent $7.1 million on travel in the 2012-13 academic year. That's $1 million more than what athletics officials expected and nearly $2 million more than travel costs during the school's final season in the Big 12 Conference.
Missouri shared the top spot for SEC travel costs with fellow Big 12 exile Texas A&M among the seven SEC public schools that provided data to the Tribune.
Commercial flights from Columbia to most SEC campuses are limited, and the move from the Big 12 eliminated games at three schools within driving distance: Kansas, Kansas State and Iowa State.
COLUMBIA, Mo. (AP) — Missouri coach Gary Pinkel is providing few clues as to who's winning the competition to start at quarterback this fall.
Returning starter James Franklin began spring camp March 12th listed atop the depth chart, but Corbin Berkstresser and Maty Mauk have also taken snaps with the top offense ahead of Saturday's Black and Gold game.
Pinkel says he's in no rush to make a decision.
Meanwhile, The Saint Louis University Billikens easily handled their first round matchup against New Mexico State Thursday afternoon, winning 64-to-44. They move on to play Oregon on March 23rd.
The Missouri Tigers also got a ticket to the big dance. Mizzou is the ninth seed in the Midwest. They'll face the No. 8 seed Colorado State on Thursday.
If Mizzou and SLU make it through the first two rounds of the tournament, they would face each other in the Elite 8.
After an up and down season, the Fighting Illini made it into the tournament with a No. 7 seed and will face No. 10 seed Colorado in the Eastern Region on Friday.
Fellow senior Jabari Brown helped finish off the Razorbacks early with 13 of his 23 points in a dominant first half with the Tigers (22-8-11-6 SEC) leading 48-22. The third senior, Alex Oriakhi, had 10 points and eight rebounds and topped 1,000 career rebounds.
BJ Young had 27 points for Arkansas (18-12, 9-8), which shot just 31 percent in the first half while going 1 for 15 from 3-point range. The Razorbacks surrendered a season high in points.
Missouri finished 17-0 at home for its second unbeaten slate in five years. The Tigers shot 58 percent in the first half and 57 percent the rest of the way.
Phil Pressey added 10 assists, seven points, six rebounds and three steals for Missouri (19-7, 8-5 SEC). The Tigers didn't have Bowers a month ago in a 31-point blowout loss at Florida.
Mike Rosario had 14 points for Florida (21-4, 11-2) but missed a 3-point try at the buzzer. The Gators had won 13 of 14 and led 49-36 with 10:51 left, then hurt themselves at the foul line.
Florida missed five straight free throws in the second half, three times on the front end of one-and-ones. The Gators made six of 12 foul shots overall, while Missouri was 12 of 15.
The Tigers improved to 15-0 at home this season. They are 30-1 the last two seasons under coach Frank Haith.
The loss dropped the Tigers (16-6, 5-4 Southeastern Conference) to 0-5 in true road games. They have won three games at neutral sites this season.
Laurence Bowers was wide open when he hit a 3-pointer to give Missouri its first lead of the game, 68-67, with 53 seconds left.
Harris turned it over on Texas A&M's next possession, but Phil Pressey gave it right back with a turnover to set up the winning score for A&M (14-8, 4-5).
Ray Turner blocked a shot by Keion Bell with 2 seconds left to secure the win.
Alex Oriakhi led the Tigers with 15 points.