Not much went right for Missouri men's basketball as it returned to Southeastern Conference action Tuesday night.
The Tigers never found an offensive rhythm or defensive presence in a 72-45 loss to Mississippi State at Humphrey Coliseum in Starkville.
The loss drops Missouri to 9-7 overall and 1-3 in the SEC. The Bulldogs (10-6, 1-3) picked up their first conference victory with the 27-point win.
“From start to finish, just didn’t play well,” Missouri coach Cuonzo Martin said. “We allowed them to have comfort offensively. ... Just a lot of things that weren’t characteristic of us.”
Kobe Brown was the only MU player to reach double figures, scoring 14 points. Javon Pickett posted nine for the Tigers, while Mark Smith finished with eight.
Mississippi State’s Reggie Perry led all scorers with 23 points and collected 10 rebounds.
The Tigers’ 45 points were the lowest single-game total in Martin's three seasons at the helm and also the fewest for the program since a 43-point outing in February 2017, the last home game of Kim Anderson’s tenure as head coach.
This was the second-most lopsided loss for Missouri under Martin. The Tigers lost by 34 at Auburn last season.
“We spent a lot of time talking about being aggressive, setting the tone, attacking the rim, making plays, and (we) just didn't do it,” Martin said. “So why? Couldn’t tell you. ... (Mississippi State) had their way from start to finish.”
The blowout loss comes three days after Missouri scored 91 points in a win against Florida. The Tigers shot over 60% from the field and 3-point range against the Gators.
But MU struggled and fell flat Tuesday against the Bulldogs, shooting 35% from the field and 20% (5-for-25) from beyond the arc while committing 19 turnovers.
Mississippi State raced out to a 10-0 lead, not allowing the Tigers to score until nearly five minutes into the game. The Bulldogs led 40-20 at halftime.
"Obviously a great win for us and we needed it desperately," Mississippi State coach Ben Howland said. “Our defense actually improved off our last game and it was our best defensive game of the year. Our defense was unbelievable and everything starts with our defense. We were really, really physical and tough."
Missouri returns to action at 2:30 p.m. Saturday for a road contest against Alabama.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.