Victor Williams scored a season-high 24 points as No. 24 Oklahoma State extended its winning streak to 12 games with a 76-56 Big 12 Conference thrashing of 11th-ranked Missouri.
Facing one of the hottest teams in the country that was coming off Monday's emotional victory over fifth-ranked Oklahoma, Missouri (10-3, 1-1 Big 12) entered the contest with a major distraction.
Clemons, the Tigers' point guard and second-leading scorer at 17.2 points per game, was suspended indefinitely after being arrested Friday for allegedly choking a 20-year-old woman and refusing to allow her to leave his residence on Thursday.
"Obviously we were short on personnel, but we're not going to use that as an excuse," Missouri coach Quin Snyder said. "As I said yesterday in my statement about Ricky (Clemons), it's obviously an unfortunate situation that we're going to have to look into."
"We are definitely capable of going on without Clemons," Tigers guard Rickey Paulding said. "It's going to be tough, but we have to concentrate on playing with the guys we have right now. We are still a confident group."
Cowboys coach Eddie Sutton talked about the Tigers not having Clemons.
"You can never tell," he said. "I have played teams who's best player couldn't play and they ended up having a better game. You can never know. Sometimes when your best player isn't there other players play better then they might if their best player is there. There is no doubt that not having Clemons out there was a big loss because he is a good scorer and he takes a lot of pressure off other players."
Perhaps still a little distracted, the Tigers were ambushed by the Cowboys, who raced to a double-digit lead less than five minutes into the contest and led by as many as 35 points in the second half.
"It thought the first thirty minutes was probably the best basketball that we have played this season," Sutton said. "Our defense continues to be excellent, and we executed much better offensively."
Williams led the way and Melvin Sanders added 15 points for Oklahoma State (14-1, 3-0), which has not lost since a 66-59 defeat to College of Charleston on November 29 in the Great Alaska Shootout.
Arthur Johnson netted 20 points to lead the Tigers, who suffered their second straight loss. Missouri came off Monday's 76-69 loss at Syracuse.
Without Clemons and with leading-scorer Paulding getting shutdown by the Cowboys' stifling defense, the Tigers were held 24 points below their scoring average.
"You could tell they were without their starting point guard," Williams said. "Clemons is a great player, and that definitely hurt them on the offensive and defensive end. But not to take anything away from our defensive effort, I think if he was out there we would have attacked them the same way."
Paulding managed just 10 points on 3-of-12 shots as he was guarded primarily by Sanders. On Monday, Sanders limited Oklahoma's Hollis Price to six points.
"I thought that Melvin did a sensational job on Paulding," Sutton said. "Paulding is one of the best wing men that we have in the Big 12. Melvin's defensive performance this week against two very good basketball players, has been outstanding."
Paulding also struggled against Syracuse, scoring 11 points on 3-of-12 shooting while committing four turnovers.
The Cowboys wasted little time delivering the knockout blow, starting the contest on a 14-2 run, fueled by seven points from Williams.
After consecutive baskets by Johnson, Williams drilled a 3-pointer to start an 11-2 burst that made it 25-8 with 10 1/2 minutes left in the half. Williams made 9-of-14 shots from the field, including 4-of-7 attempts from 3-point range.
Sparked by Williams, who scored 15 points in the first half, the Cowboys opened a commanding 43-21 lead. The point total was just five from matching their total in the win over Oklahoma.
Clemons' replacement, freshman Jimmy McKinney finished with 15 points - two in the first half - and four assists.
Janavor Weatherspoon added 12 points and Ivan McFarlin 10 for Oklahoma State, which shot 49 percent (30-of-61) and held a 38-34 rebounding advantage.
The Cowboys took their biggest lead at 71-36 with under 10 minutes remaining.