SPRINGFIELD, Mo–There are four games left in the regular season for the Missouri State Bears.
And Dana Ford wants his team to climb into one of the top four spots in the Valley standings.
That would give the Bears a first round bye in the new-look Arch Madness bracket.
The Bears will be at first place Bradley Wednesday night.
And one key player that could give the Bears a chance is a guard from Georgia.
For Missouri State coach Dana Ford it was a no brainer.
Take a chance on Chance.
Chance Moore that is.
“He’s one of those guys who’s so talented you want them to be so good. You spend a lot of time trying to get him better. And sometimes you don’t appreciate how good he is,” said Ford.
Moore is a 6-6 guard who’s only a sophomore.
He’s averaging 11 points per game.
Moore has excelled in being the first option off the bench.
“It’s doesn’t really matter to me. Coming off the bench or starting. Just being able to impact the game. No matter what time I come in, that’s my main focus,” said Moore.
The Georgia native is from the Atlanta area.
He played at three different high schools including the prestigious McEachren high.
Moore:”It felt it was a good move for me. Just being able to play stiffer competition. We were a ranked team in the nation. One of the better teams. Having that target on our back just helped me. The better level of competition made me more ready to play.”
That exposure also caught the attention of the Southeastern conference.
Six schools recruited him out of McEachren, he picked Arkansas.
He was part of the Razorback team that went to last year’s Elite Eight.
But when the NCAA run was over, Moore started looking around.
“For me pretty much it was about playing. They run a really short rotation at Arkansas. And I just wasn’t in it. I felt it was best for me to try to find somewhere else,” said Moore.
Bears assistant coach Sheldon Everett had a relationship with Moore, and got him to look at Missouri State.
“We did a couple of zooms and had an instant connection with both Chance and his familhy. I think that helped. And then when they came for a visit I feel that we have a great product to sell,” said Ford.
“They recruited me hard out of the portal. They told me what I wanted to hear…They would give me an opportunity to play. They would coach me hard and all for the better. And push me to the be the best player I could be,” said Moore.
And he’s helping Missouri State in this late season run.
“On the court he’s an athlete. He wants it. He’s hungry and he can score. And score the ball at three different levels,” said Bears forward Donovan Clay.
Ford and the Bears are thankful for taking this chance.