Tigers head to Oklahoma with share of Big 12 lead

Missouri guard Marcus Denmon celebrates following the Tigers’ 74-71 win against Kansas on Saturday at Mizzou Arena.

Missouri guard Marcus Denmon celebrates following the Tigers’ 74-71 win against Kansas on Saturday at Mizzou Arena. Photo by The Associated Press.

COLUMBIA, Mo. — Missouri’s frantic comeback from eight points down in the final three minutes Saturday night to defeat Kansas did not just give the fourth-ranked Tigers a win against their archrival.

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Believe it or not, it served a bigger purpose as the Tigers pulled into a three-way tie for first place in the Big 12 with Baylor and Kansas. Missouri can take a half-game lead in the conference with a win tonight at Oklahoma (6 p.m. ESPNU-TV).

Being atop the conference is rarefied air for the Tigers, as Missouri has never won a Big 12 title. The Tigers’ last conference title came in 1994 when they went undefeated in conference play to win the old Big 8 Conference.

But as several Tigers said after Saturday’s 74-71 victory, winning has become the norm around Columbia, and they want to keep it that way.

“We don’t expect to come into games and lose,” Missouri guard Kim English said. “We prepare to win. ... This game to us was just a game we needed to win to continue our quest to win the Big 12.”

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