Missouri State at Northern Iowa, 9:00 PM Eastern, CBS Sports Network
The Under the Radar Game of the Day is escaping Winter Storm Grayson and taking a ‘trip’ to Cedar Falls, Iowa tonight for a key contest in the Missouri Valley Conference as the Northern Iowa Panthers play host to the Missouri State Bears. Northern Iowa is close to freefall mode after a great 8-2 start to the season that included wins over SMU, North Carolina State and UNLV. They have now dropped four straight games, including an 0-2 start in league play, and have quickly gone from a team that was toeing the at-large candidate line to a team just needing a win of any kind to remain in the picture in the MVC. The Panthers shot only 35% from two point range in a 19 point loss at Bradley last time out, while allowing the Braves to hit 9 of 14 from behind the arc. Those types of numbers on both ends of the court simply will not be enough to get it done against almost any level of competition.
Missouri State enters tonight’s game at 12-3 overall and 2-0 in MVC play. The Bears picked up a solid road win at Valparaiso last time out, winning by 17 points. Alize Johnson led the way with 11 points, 12 rebounds and 4 assists in that victory. Despite a couple of hiccups during non-conference play, most notably a loss to Oral Roberts, Mo State appears primed to get things rolling and has a great chance to emerge as the favorite in the Missouri Valley. A road win tonight, even if their opponent is struggling, will certainly go a long way to establishing them in such a position.