Preview: Missouri men’s basketball will learn from its mistakes over the weekend as Mark Smith possibly returns.

Smith didn’t play in the Tigers’ last game against LSU.
Missouri guard Mark Smith boxes out CAU center Hayden Koval on a free throw during an eventual 68-55 win for the Tigers on Tuesday, Nov. 6, 2018 at Mizzou Arena.

This story has been changed from saying Mark Smith – who injured his ankle in a matchup with Arkansas on Wednesday, Jan. 23 – has been injured since a matchup with Texas A&M on Saturday, Jan. 19.

_CORRECTION: This story has been changed from saying Mark Smith – who injured his ankle in a matchup with Arkansas on Wednesday, Jan. 23 – has been injured since a matchup with Texas A&M on Saturday, Jan. 19._

Missouri men’s basketball will escape the sub-zero temperatures set to hit the state Wednesday, Jan. 30, as the team travels to Auburn, Alabama to face off against another Tigers team on Wednesday night.

Missouri (10-8, 1-5 SEC) will look to rebound from an overtime loss Saturday against No. 25 LSU in which Missouri gave up a 14-point lead with 2:14 left in the second half. For coach Cuonzo Martin, it was an experience he wants to get better from.

“I don’t know if you ever get over this type of loss,” Martin said. “If you’re a competitive person, you figure out [what you did wrong] so that it never happens again.”

A bright spot of the loss was senior guard Jordan Geist, who recorded his first career double-double, finishing with 25 points and 11 rebounds. He will be going up against Auburn’s guard combination of senior Bryce Brown and junior Jared Harper, who have averaged a combined 32.2 points per game this season.

“Brown is a great scorer at all levels,” Geist said. “Harper is one of the quickest guards I’ve ever played against. You have to come in and have a lot of respect for them, but know you’re good enough to play against them and give them your best shot.”

While 9-1 at home this season, Auburn (10-6, 2-4 SEC) has lost its last three games. As of Jan. 27, the Tigers of Auburn were not included in the Associated Press top-25, but received the most votes among non-ranked teams.

Wednesday could also see the return of sophomore guard Mark Smith, who leads the SEC in 3-point percentage. He has been out since the win at Arkansas on Jan. 23 with an ankle injury.

“He didn’t do a lot [Tuesday],” Martin said. “It was probably more precaution, but I think [he’ll play].”

Missouri at Auburn tips off from Auburn Arena at 7:30 p.m. on SEC Network.

Edited by Adam Cole | acole@themaneater.com

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