The University of Illinois and Missouri University announced they have extended their agreement to play the Bragging Rights basketball series in St. Louis's Scottrade Center through at least 2017. The two programs have played 31 of the last 32 years and it has become one of the nation's best non-conference rivalries. Illinois has won 20 of those games, all of which were played in St. Louis.
Frank Haith had the chance to coach in his first Bragging Rights game last season, and he led the Missouri Tigers to a 78-74 victory. Haith is glad to see the series continue, according to MUTigers.com:
"There is nothing like this game in all of college basketball. The fan bases are split down the middle and the enthusiasm is second to none. You add in a national television audience and the excitement of the holiday season and you get the best rivalry game of the non-league season."
The Tigers and Fighting Illini will play on Dec. 22 this season, with the game televised on ESPN2. Missouri is on a three-game winning streak over Illinois, and the Tigers are expected to win again as they open the preseason with a No. 17 ranking in the USA Today men's basketball coaches poll.