Missouri and Illinois extend 'Braggin' Rights' series

Dilip Vishwanat

Conference realignment won't spoil a three-decade tradition.

Illinois and Missouri took steps today to ensure their 32-year tradition will continue, as both schools announced they have extended their 'Braggin' Rights' series through 2017.

First played in December of 1980, the game has since become a holiday basketball tradition. This year's contest will take place on Dec. 22 at 5 p.m. on ESPN2. In last year's game, Frank Haith's squad got the best of Illinois, claiming a 78-74 victory.

With Missouri's move to the SEC this year, there was concern the rivalry would fall by the wayside, much like how the Tigers' bi-annual games against Kansas were lost, however, due to efforts by both athletic directors, the 'Braggin' rights' series wont see the same fate.

Historically the Illini have a 20-11 series lead, though over the last 21 years it has been a lot closer -- 11-10 in favor of Illinois since 1981. Missouri has won the last three meetings between the two schools.

The series will remain a neutral-site game, with St. Louis's Scottrade Center hosting the event through the end of this new agreement.

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