COLUMBIA, Mo. — The University of Missouri men's basketballl team will play in the Orange Bowl in the winter. No it's not the one in college football. It's the basketball one.
The Tigers announced Monday afternoon they will participate in AutoNation Orange Bowl Basketball Classic on Dec. 17. They will play the UCF Golden Knights at FLA Live Arena in Sunrise, Florida.
The Florida State Seminoles and St. John's Red Storm will also be participating in the tournament.
If the Tigers win against UCF, both the Red Storm and the Seminoles would offer very enticing matchup to the Tigers.
New head coach Dennis Gates was an assistant coach under Hamilton at Florida State from 2011-2019 before he took the job at Cleveland State in July 2019, and former Missouri Tiger head coach Mike Anderson is now the head coach at St. John's.
Anderson was the Tigers head coach from 2006-2011. He left the program immediately after their tournament loss to the Cincinnati Bearcats to take reigns of his alma mater Arkansas.
Anderson would go 169-102 in eight years with the Razorbacks before being fired after the 2018-19 season. Anderson took reigns of St. John's immediately after and has gone 50-41 in three seasons with the Red Storm.
All four schools will look to return to the NCAA Tournament next season.
The Seminoles missed the NCAA Tournament for the first time since the 2015-16 season.
The Seminoles have made the NCAA Tournament eight times since Hamilton became the head coach of the program in 2002.
Both UCF and St. John's both last made the tournament in 2019.
St. John lost in the the First Four round to Arizona State while UCF would win their first round matchup to the VCU Rams before bowing out in the Round of 32 to Dawkins' alma mater Duke.
The Tigers will hope return to the tournament under Gates after firing former head coach Cuonzo Martin immediately after their second round loss in the SEC Tournament to LSU in March.