Joplin, Mo. -- The Missouri Southern men's basketball team will open up the 2012-13 season tonight with the first of two exhibitions it will play before the start of the regular season as the Lions will play at Oral Roberts in Tulsa at 7 pm.
Southern is coming off its second-straight NCAA Tournament appearance and the Lions finished the season ranked No. 23. They were ranked the entire season from start to finish for the first time since becoming Division II, and peaked at No. 1, the highest ever ranking in the program's history.
The Lions are picked to finish sixth and fourth in the MIAA preseason coaches and media poll that was released last month. They are receiving votes in the Division II Bulletin preseason poll and will find out where they rank in the NABC Coaches Poll when that is released later this week.
Returning All-MIAA performers Marquis Addison (3rd team) and Jordan Talbert (honorable mention), will be back to their roles in the starting lineup to lead this year's Lions. Junior Matt Everson, as well as newcomers Bryan Adams (junior) and RJ Leverette (sophomore) will be the opening night starters against the Golden Eagles.
Oral Roberts comes in as the preseason favorites to win the Southland Conference in its first year in the league. The Golden Eagles were 27-7 a season ago and won the Summit League, earning a spot in the Postseason NIT.
Just a note ... the game at Oral Roberts will not be broadcast on the MSSU Radio Network. There is a link above to get the ORU broadcast. The game at Missouri on Sunday will be broacast live on AM 1230 The Talker.