1 - It's nothing impressive to beat Iowa State and Colorado at home by double digits. But does beating them by a combined 76 points say something?
2 - Positive and negative surprises (conference-wide) in Big 12 play so far?
3 - Chase Daniel did not have the greatest performance at last week's Shrine game, though he apparently had a pretty good week of practice. Where do you figure his draft stock lies right now?
4 - Thoughts about the handful of 2-star Texas sleepers Mizzou landed this weekend? Good thing? Bad thing?
5 - Finally, via Facebook I see that ZouDave became a "fan" of John Wall. What does ZD have to do to get Wall to shock the world and come to Mizzou?
The Beef: 1 - I think it says a couple of things. It says how good we are at home, winning games there by over 30 points per so far this season. It also says where Iowa State and Colorado are as programs. Clearly, they are a little bit away in terms of talent.
2 - I don’t know that I can say I have paid a ton of attention to the entire conference, but I guess I will say Nebraska is a bit of a surprise in the way they handled us and then really took it to k-State. Was also impressed at Okie State being able to go into Baylor and take that game into OT (though Baylor did blow it in regulation). As for a negative surprise…I suppose it is how bad some of the teams are.
3 - Probably the same as it was before the game, maybe a little higher. The absolute best thing that came of last week was the fact he measured an even six feet tall. If he can show he has shaken off whatever hand injury is plaguing him, then he still likely warrants a 2nd day pick, I would say somewhere in the 5th-6th round.
4 - Love the athletes the state produces, and I was reading an interesting discussion of TX vs. MO football players. I never really thought about the sheer advantages in terms of practice time, money, facilities, coaches and so forth that Texas really does enjoy over any other state. So, for me, I think a 2-star TX kid is probably about like a 3-star Missouri kid. And I don’t think anyone ever complains about a 3-star Missouri kid…so I wont either.
5 - Promise him his own, daily highlight video with music that doesn’t suck?
Michael Atchison: 1 - Sure it says something (it’s a combined back-to-back margin never before achieved by the Tigers), but there’s only so much to take away from it. This team’s style often turns routine wins over inferior teams into blowouts. It hits a tipping point at around 20 points and then it can get ugly.
2 - Positive surprises would include the play of Oklahoma’s supporting cast, Nebraska’s saltiness at home, and I’m not sure if this is a surprise, but Cole Aldrich’s dominance of the paint at Kansas. Negatives would include K-State’s wretched start.
3 - Let me preface this by saying that I love the kid, but he sure seems like a second-day player to me. The size and the proclivity to float the ball sure don’t remind me of many current NFL quarterbacks.
4 - I don’t have any way of knowing whether it’s good or bad, but there’s enough highly rated kids on board and the staff has enough of a track record with sleeper kids that they get every benefit of the doubt.
5 - I’m guessing a date with his sister.
The Beef: Damn…how could I have missed the obvious answer on question 5….
ZouDave: 1 - I think it says we can be pretty good, especially against lesser teams at home. Sounds a little bit like our football team....
2 - Well KSU seems like a negative surprise. Were they really supposed to struggle like this? And I don't really know about a positive surprise, I haven't paid enough attention to the rest of the conference yet.
3 - I think his draft stock is on life support, honestly. He had a bad end to the season, and he was up against the wall on being drafted anyway because of his size and the fact that he could be viewed as a "system" QB. Still, I think it's pretty telling that he was coaching up his fellow QBs on the sidelines during the game. This kid has a future as a 3rd string QB in the NFL, at least for a couple of years while they can pay him the league minimum for the position, and then he's going to enter coaching. I really think Daniel will make an EXCELLENT QB coach, and hopefully for Mizzou, in the near future.
4 - The dreaded "it is what it is". We're not going to be signing 4-star players as depth, and we need depth in every class. If these kids are good enough athletes that Mizzou wants to take shot on them, then bring it on let's have some fun. If they're the next Weatherspoon 2-star talent out of Texas, we're going to be awesome. If they're the next Forrest Shock, we really haven't lost anything because we have a bunch of other players in the class that are supposed to be a lot better. I think it's important to continue taking chances on these lesser known kids until we're at a point where we don't have to put forth much effort into recruiting Missouri kids and can start really concentrating on stealing 4-star talent out of Texas. That may happen by Gabbert's senior season if everything goes as well as it can.
5 - I would have to find about a million dollars that I'd be willing to give John Wall to come to Mizzou, and I'd have to not get caught doing it. Sorry I didn't get an opportunity to post any thoughts over the weekend (I know Beef was REALLY disappointed in that) but suffice to say: John Wall is better than I thought he could be. He may not be Lebron James, but that's not really a fair standard. If he wasn't required to, there's no way he'd be playing college ball next year. He is at another level from his competition, simple as that. He scored 41 in the championship game on Saturday, including 17 of 18 free throws and either scoring or assisting on his team's final 25 points. His team won 82-79, so he had half of their points. And his team is LOADED with talent. John Wall is a freak.
rptgwb: 1. It says that we kill mediocre teams at home. It may not be much, but it's a hell of a lot better than losing to mediocre teams at home.
2. Things have played out according to plan, for the most part. Nebraska's success at home may be filed under a positive surprise, and I don't know that I've seen anything negative from any team that's caught me completely off-guard.
3. Where the rest of America's stocks are: plummeting. I still think he's a late round flier and a training camp causality.
4. Trust in Gary. His track record with Texas sleepers is pretty solid, so I'll follow his plan blindly until proven otherwise.
5. Did Bill Self become a fan of John Wall on his Facebook?
Doug: 1 - My guess is, it says more about the difficulty of playing on the road anywhere in the Big 12, and, it also speaks to just how bad Colorado and Iowa State are.
2 - Nebraska, playing without any real post presence, has to be making Doc Sadler feel good. Cole Aldrich taking a huge step forward from freshman reserve to sophomore starter is equably noteworthy, in fact, Aldrich may have the best pro career from the national championship squad, he's that good. On the negative side, I kind of expected Colorado to still be experiencing growing pains, especially without Richard Roby, I didn't know much about Iowa State, so it's kind of surprising they're not doing well. But, far and away, K-State's start to the conference season may put Frank Martin's time with the Wildcats in jeopardy, no matter what kind of recruits he has coming in next season.
3 - I think it safe to say Daniel's practices for the Shrine game were inconsistent at best. Going into the season, I thought he could be a 3rd or 4th round pick, by the end of the season, maybe a 5th or 6th round pick, now I think he's at best a late-7th, take-a-flyer pick. But, he'll probably wind up a undrafted free agent.
4 - Football recruiting is so hit-and-miss, grabbing as many of those fringe players as you can is never a bad thing. Think about it, Mark Mangino basically built his football team with 2-star, 1-star and no-star players. It's about coaching, talent development, and play calling to get the most out of your players on the field.
5- So Dave is just a "Fan" of John Wall, not a full on "Friend"? Though, I suppose Dave trolling Facebook for high school students to befriend would be a bit creepy. Oh, wait, I know. Tell John he can totally fabricate one part of his media guide bio.
The Boy: 1 - I did enjoy the blurb from the other day that said that the only two teams to win road games after roughly three games for everybody were OU and KU...and KU beat Colorado. I do think the scoring margins show that this team really is better than the previous iterations of Mike Anderson's team. Whether they're good enough to reach the 9-7 or 10-6 level they need to reach...not sure. Tonight will be an interesting test simply because of the toughness of the venue and the fact that OSU plays even faster than Mizzou. With an up-tempo game like that, what would be a quick 6-point run in a normal game will be a 10-point run instead...it wouldn't surprise me to see both teams with healthy scoring margins at one point or another. I think the most likely outcome is an 8-12 point win for OSU, but if Mizzou actually shows up and plays well, who knows. Whereas we knew Doc Sadler could coach against MA's system, we don't know anything about how Travis Ford will handle it.
2 - Honestly, I guess you have to go with OSU and NU as the pleasant surprises and KSU as the unpleasant one. The results themselves haven't been all that surprising--OSU's beaten ATM at home and lost to Baylor on the road--but they almost won in Waco, which was a nice effort. Meanwhile, it's not necessarily a surprise that NU beat KSU in Lincoln, but...by 22? NU appears to be a tough out at home at the very least, and KSU just can't keep from turning the ball over.
That said...yeah, it's clearly still very early. Only one-sixth of the conference season has been played. But hey...I had to ask something about Big 12 basketball, right?
3 - I really really really want to know how much Chase's thumb is still bothering him. It's not necessarily surprising that he struggled at the Shrine game, but his problems there and in the Alamo Bowl have been with sheer inaccuracy...which was his biggest strength for the first 3.5 years of his career. I realize he doesn't want to make any excuses, and that's admirable, but if the thumb really is hurting his play more than he's letting on...well, maybe he should let on that that's the cause. And if the thumb is no problem whatsoever...well...then he ends up on the Mizzou coaching staff faster than I thought.
4 - The way I see it, it's all about resources. Trusting your scouting ability enough to be able to go down to Texas and pluck away 4-6 kids with little to no competition allows you to pour more resources into other areas of recruiting. We now have commits from four 2-star Texas kids. Not all four will turn into Sean Weatherspoons (for every 'Spoon, there's a Donte Neal), but if we get one Weatherspoon/Hood/Danario and one solid contributor, then I love this method of recruiting. And yeah...Mizzou's never going to fill out a class with 4-star kids, and this method has a good track record. But that won't stop folks from complaining. I mean...at this point, you can just name the time between the National Title Game and the Super Bowl "PowerMizzou Hand-Wringing Season." Gabe gets complaints that there's not enough recruiting news (due to the quiet period over the holidays), then he unearths a bunch of new sleeper names and gets complaints that those aren't the right guys...
5 - Actually, I didn't check John Wall's friends list. ZD could be there too. And since the "ZD's sister" joke has already been taken, I'll just say I'll be happy if he goes anywhere other than Kansas.
ZouDave: No way would I try to be some random HS kid's friend. I am at least better than that!
But really the only way I won't be a John Wall fan for life is if he goes to ku. After watching that kid play, it's almost impossible not to like him. He was not only great, he was also obviously a great team player.
I did at one point during the final game, after Wall had been sent to the free throw line, say that if he makes both shots it's a sign that he's going to end up at Mizzou. He swished them both. So, we've got that going for us...which is nice.
The Beef: Didn’t I just hear that Springfield is losing the tournament already? Am I making that up?
ZouDave: you have to be making that up. It's been there for 25 years and Bass Pro, as the sponsor, isn't exactly hurting for business. They just moved into the new Missouri State Arena and all 3 days of this tourney were near sellouts.
I can't imagine this tourney going anywhere. It's not like them having the tourney is preventing other tourneys from existing.
The Beef: This was actually at the top of the article that got all the notice with the Self story in it…needless to say…I skimmed it.
Not to sound like a pathetic, scorned lover, but I love you Tournament of Champions.
Why do you have to leave? Stay forever. We can make it work, I promise.
But seriously, I'm going to have withdrawals without the T of C. Typically I describe it as an oasis in the middle of an arduous high school basketball season.
So if that's true, this year's T of C was a hoops nirvana that I'm going to miss.
rptgwb: Speaking of Chase's seemingly eventual addition to the Mizzou coaching staff, is there ANY apprehension out there that this doesn't happen? Chase is very highly regarded in the business school, and having Warren Buffett as a close contact is one hell of a start in the business world. Does anyone want to handicap the odds that Chase goes the business route?
ZouDave: While I think it would be GREAT to have Chase on the Mizzou coaching staff, really my only apprehension is if he becomes a coach somewhere else instead of Mizzou. If he pursues a different career, especially one under the tutelage of Warren Buffet, then more power to you dude and good luck. I just don't want to see us miss the opportunity to have him coaching under Pinkel to see him instead coaching at North Texas with Pat Dodge or Wyoming with Christensen or something totally worse like another Big XII school.
The Boy: So for anybody who's interested (i.e. Atch, who has probably already heard and memorized the whole thing), they're streaming BROOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOCE's new album here.
The Wall of Sound is back!
Michael Atchison: I have indeed heard it (there may or may not have been an internet leak last week), though I haven’t memorized it. It’s a little all over the place as an album, but “Surprise, Surprise” is a keeper.
The Boy: Well hell, the very first song goes in about 13 different directions...it's interesting thus far...but when I saw that Rolling Stone gave it 5 stars, I immediately feared the worst.
Michael Atchison: It has become sad, predictable and sadly predictable how Rolling Stone will fawn over any new work from Springsteen, Dylan or the Stones (I believe Jann Wenner himself penned a 4.5 star review for Mick Jagger’s last solo album, which quickly was forgotten). I love, love, love the last Springsteen album, so I’m not carping on his current creativity or pining for a return to 1978, but a five-star rating for this album is preposterous.
The Boy: Whew...we will NOT go an entire roundtable without a picture...that was a close one...
Actually, I'm still pissed about the $12 or so that I lost buying that Jagger album after reading that review. I had no intention of buying it, but the review sucked me in...and the album was thoroughly, completely mediocre in every way.
Meanwhile, I'm 2/3 through this live stream, and...yeah. This isn't as good as either of the last two. But I still got my wish of tagging "Bruce Springsteen" onto this Roundtable.
ZouDave: The Boy had a wish of tagging Bruce Springsteen. It's fair to say some of us aim higher than others.
The Boy: Some of us aim for your sister.
The Beef: Had? What makes you think he gave up on that dream?
ZouDave: I purposely avoided that picture, damn you
The Beef: I have no couth….
The Boy: Wow, two snaps...it's like Men on Film around here...
Which one's Dave and which one's Beef?
ZouDave: Beef is the black one.
The Beef: I am probably the bald one…