Don’t Hit Snooze
Dave Matter of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch got his hands on Barry Odom’s full contract, and in it, there were changes aimed at “fair, safe and responsible treatment of student athletes.”
Here are the most significant changes highlighted by Matter:
“With the cooperation and assistance of University, the employee shall engage in (and encourage that every coach under employee supervision is engaging in) fair, safe and responsible treatment of student athletes on the football team, and avoiding behavior that could in any way jeopardize as student athletes health, safety or welfare, or that could otherwise cause harm or risk causing harm to a student athlete. The employee acknowledges that the above obligations are generally encompassed in the overall performance expected of the coach.
“If employee is found by the University, and its reasonable good faith discretion, to have clearly mistreated a student athlete engaged in significant or repetitive violations of NCAA rules and/or regulations, or to have failed to report a violation that he knew about or if he has failed to stop a violation that he knows about, he will be subject to disciplinary or corrective action pursuant to university guidelines, including suspension without pay, or termination of employment for cause with no further monetary obligation by the university.”
With season-ticket sales down this year and fans having more attractive (i.e., comfortable and cheap) options to watch games, Missouri’s making a push to enhance its pregame experience around Faurot Field. Tiger Town, on the southeast side of Memorial Stadium, will host the live broadcast of the pregame radio show and student-athletes will be in attendance for autographs. There will be food available for purchase, as well as a beer garden for the adults and children’s activities for — you guessed it — the children.
So, if you’re looking for things to do ahead of Saturday’s 7:30 p.m. ET kickoff, head to Tiger Town.
In case you missed it…
- Despite a disappointing 26-11 loss, two Mizzou players earned All-SEC honors by TeamSpeedKills.com.
- RockMNation.com says Missouri’s defensive line will be tested by Eastern Michigan’s run game.
- Missouri led the nation in Week 1 offensive plays but still wants to go faster, says the Kansas City Star.
- Gabe DeArmond of PowerMizzou.com says fans need to get ready for that ‘R’ word in their vocabulary.
- Drew Lock and J’Mon Moore have a strong connection but it can get better, says the Columbia Tribune.
The Fall-Out: Odom vs. Heupel
After confusingly removing Drew Lock for Marvin Zanders in the middle of an efficient second-quarter drive against West Virginia, coach Barry Odom admitted his mistake during media availability on Monday.
“I know I pulled (Lock) at the wrong time,” the first-year coach told reporters. “I’m learning, too. We’ll get better.”
On Tuesday, however, offensive coordinator Josh Heupel said it was HIS decision to make the change in the eventual 26-11 loss. More so, he said he wouldn’t have changed his decision.
The perceived feud between Odom and Heupel isn’t real. Odom said during preseason camp that he’s not meddling in offensive issues, as his expertise is the defensive side. That’s called delegation, and it’s a coach’s job. It’s also a coach’s job to fall on the sword for his assistants — and that’s what Odom did on Monday.
So, no, there’s nothing more to those contradictory statements between coach and assistant. However, the real issue here should be Heupel’s follow-up: He wouldn’t have changed his decision.
You can’t be defiant in the wake of a 26-11 loss. Yes, Missouri put up more total yards than it did at any point last year. Yes, Drew Lock threw for 280 yards (a career best) and nary a turnover. But Missouri is 0-1, and a big part of that could have been that confusing decision. Missouri trailed 13-3 at the time, but was driving into West Virginia territory. After an incomplete pass, Zanders came in, and Missouri ended the drive with no points.
On Sunday, Texas showed that a two-quarterback system can work. If this is going to work at Missouri going forward, Heupel (or whomever makes the call) will have to learn from past mistakes.
During his Wednesday press conference, Barry Odom said that Missouri has been practicing more sets with a nickelback. Odom mentioned junior college transfer Greg Taylor as the top option at the position, and KOMU’s Mark Kim took it to the next logical level.
— Mark Kim (@MarkJKim_) September 7, 2016
Missouri’s all about that #BRANDING, and Barry Odom’s marketing campaign is giving Faurot Field a slight facelift.
— Shawn Davis (@ShawnDizzle77) September 7, 2016
— Shawn Davis (@ShawnDizzle77) September 7, 2016
After a Week 1 loss to West Virginia, however, it’s time for the Tigers to follow that motto and Show Me.
What’s the spread?
Missouri is holding strong as a 25-point favorite over Eastern Michigan, according to the Westgate Superbook. Missouri opened as a 25.5-point favorite on Monday.
Missouri, however, has only beaten four teams by at least 25 points in its last 27 games — Toledo, UCF and Florida in 2014, and Southeastern Missouri State in 2015.
Top 5: Directional Schools
With Missouri set to host Eastern Michigan on Saturday, we’re taking a look at our top 5 directional schools. Here’s how they’d rank if there were such rankings after Week 1.
5. East Carolina (1-0): Sure, the Pirates were eliminated from “The Bachelor: Big 12 Edition,” but it didn’t stop them from stomping fellow directional school Western Carolina 52-7.
4. Western Kentucky (1-0): The Hilltoppers were one of four directional schools to beat an FCS opponent, and they did it in resounding fashion as they cooked Rice 46-14 at home. Their reward? Alabama in Tuscaloosa on Saturday.
3. Western Michigan (1-0): Sure, Northwestern may be rebuilding after a 10-win 2015 campaign, but the Broncos went on the road to Evanston and left with a 22-21 win.
2. South Alabama (1-0): The most out-of-nowhere shock in Week 1, South Alabama went to Starkville and hung on for a 21-20 win over the Dak-less Mississippi State Bulldogs. Yes, they won with the aid of a left upright, but South Alabama is walking tall this week.
1. Southern Mississippi (1-0): The Golden Eagles withstood a Drew Barker barrage of touchdowns in the first half and then answered in the second half for a 44-35 round win in Lexington. Great retribution for new OC Shannon Dawson, who Mark Stoops fired in the offseason. Everyone loves Shannon-freude, right?
The Non-Rev Report
- Get to know new Missouri tennis coach Colt Gaston
- Missouri volleyball heads to Idaho State Invitiational
- Olympic bronze-medalist J’Den Cox sits down with Mizzou Network
#MizzouMade in the NFL
The NFL season kicks off on Thursday night with Denver hosting Carolina. Missouri currently has 21 players on NFL rosters, up from 15 at the start of the 2015 season.
- C Tim Barnes (2010) — Los Angeles Rams
- C Evan Boehm (2015) — Arizona Cardinals
- LS Beau Brinkley (2011) — Tennessee Titans
- C Justin Britt (2013) — Seattle Seahawks
- LB Kentrell Brothers (2015) — Minnesota Vikings
- QB Chase Daniel (2008) — Philadelphia Eagles
- DE Kony Ealy (2013) — Carolina Panthers
- QB Blaine Gabbert (2010) — San Francisco 49ers
- LB Andrew Gachkar (2010) — Dallas Cowboys
- CB E.J. Gaines (2013) — Los Angeles Rams
- LB Markus Golden (2014) — Arizona Cardinals
- DE Ziggy Hood (2008) — Washington Redskins
- WR Jeremy Maclin (2008) — Kansas City Chiefs
- OG Connor McGovern (2015) — Denver Broncos
- C Mitch Morse (2014) — Kansas City Chiefs
- RB Marcus Murphy (2014) — New Orleans Saints
- LB Shane Ray (2014) — Denver Broncos
- DT Sheldon Richardson (2012) — New York Jets
- LB Aldon Smith (2010) — Oakland Raiders
- DE Jacquies Smith (2010) — Tampa Bay Buccaneers
- LB Sean Weatherspoon (2009) — Atlanta Falcons
Missouri makes a big deal about turning unknown or relatively unknown recruits into college stars, better positioning them for the NFL. The 2016 crop of NFL Tigers shows that. Sixteen of the 21 players currently on NFL rosters were ranked no higher than 3-stars out of high school; four were 2-stars or unrated. Missouri’s developmental system is also heavy on the lines; 11 players out of that list played on the offensive or defensive line in college.
The most interesting trend to follow this year, however, is the fact that Missouri is turning into Center U. Four NFL teams are slated to have former Missouri players starting at center, although only two (Tim Barnes, Evan Boehm) played that position for the duration of their college career.
As Missouri looks to rebound and rebuild, a big issue will be offensive line play. Four linemen from the Tigers’ 2013 SEC East championship team are in the NFL. Now, no current Missouri offensive lineman is even listed on NFLDraftScout.com’s position rankings.
A look at how former Missouri players are currently performing in other professional sports.
- Washington Nationals SP Max Scherzer
- NEXT GAME: Saturday, Sep. 10 vs. Philadelphia
- CURRENT STATS: 16-7, 2.88 ERA, 243 Ks, 47 BBs
- Minnesota Twins SP Kyle Gibson
- NEXT GAME: Wednesday, Sep. 7 vs. Kansas City
- CURRENT STATS: 5-9, 5.31 ERA, 82 Ks, 42 BBs