Mizzou Football Links
Hmm. One of my favorite football curmudgeons, Andy Staples, is ever-so-slightly on the Missouri bandwagon for next year. I don't know what to think about that. I love the guy, even though I never actually agree with him, so ... hmm.
The Trib: MU now focuses on setting non-SEC schedule
Mr. SEC: What's Not To Like About 2012 SEC Schedule?
9/22 at S. Carolina
11/3 at Florida
11/10 at Tennessee
11/24 at Texas A&M
What’s to Like: Life in the SEC East. At some point the pendulum will swing the other way, but right now the East is the easier division… and Mizzou will avoid Arkansas and LSU.
What’s Not to Like: In the past, no SEC school could close the season with two league road games. The Tigers get three on the road to end 2012. They’ll also visit College Station for the third-straight season (having won the last two at Kyle Field).
8. Missouri will compete for the SEC East title. The Tigers might have gotten the luckiest single-game draw on the SEC master schedule. Getting Georgia in Columbia -- the Columbia with Shakespeare's Pizza, not the Columbia with Pawley's Front Porch -- on Sept. 8 gives Mizzou its best shot to insert itself in the division race. Everyone will be fired up for the Tigers' first SEC game, and everyone should be healthy. Even if tailback Henry Josey isn't back from the gruesome knee injury suffered this season against Texas, James Franklin -- the Mizzou quarterback, not the Vanderbilt coach -- and company should have the firepower to make things interesting. If they pull the upset, the Tigers should have as good of a chance to win the East as Georgia or South Carolina.
Other Football Links
SAY IT ISN'T SO, DANDY DAVE.
That. Was. Ridiculous.
Our Daily Bears: Baylor Defeats Washington 67-56 in Valero Alamo Bowl
Dr. Saturday: Baylor and Washington break the throttle in the most offensive game in bowl history
HAHAHAHA, Oh Dandy Dave...
Crimson And Cream Machine: Tulsa World Columnist Dave Sittler Goes Not So "Off The Record" About Former OU Coach John Blake
B1G & Pac
Frank the Tank: B1G 24 Pac: The New Big Ten/Pac-12 Partnership
Mizzou Basketball Links
So Jeff Goodman tweeted that Pitt suspected Missouri of tampering in the morning, then tweeted that everything was smoothed out last night. An accelerated life cycle for a news story, even in an era of accelerated life cycles. The initial rumor was that Birch was cleared to transfer anywhere but Missouri because of this ... we'll see if a) he's now released to Mizzou and b) Mizzou and/or Birch are still interested.
Tampering With Khem Birch?
The Trib: Haith denies tampering allegation
Missouri Coach Frank Haith denied an allegation that his staff tampered with former Pittsburgh player Khem Birch, who announced earlier this month that he is transferring from the Panthers program.
The allegation surfaced in a Twitter message from CBSSports.com’s Jeff Goodman, who wrote Thursday morning: "Told, per sources, that Pittsburgh has not given a release for Missouri to recruit Khem Birch. Source said Pitt thinks Mizzou was tampering."
Goodman wrote in a later message that Missouri was the only school Pittsburgh denied a release for Birch to attend.
"We’re aware of the tweet, and it’s unfounded," Haith said through a team spokesman. "We never even asked for a release."
They're Falling Left And Right
The Missourian: Missouri men's basketball one of only four unbeatens
The Trib: Paint now Ricardo Ratliffe's Dominion
The Trib (Steve Walentik): What to watch for: Old Dominion
KC Star: Senior Tiger heads home as MU faces Old Dominion
"This is going to be the fifth time my mom sees me play in person, and that means a lot," Ratliffe said. "With her having disabilities, she wasn’t really able to see me play in high school because she couldn’t sit down after two hip replacement surgeries."
Throw in the fact Ratliffe has a cousin who plays for Old Dominion — freshman guard Dimitri Batten from Newport News, Va. — and tonight’s game might as well be a family reunion.
And if any heart-warming scenes unfold before or after the game, Missouri’s top big man will have his teammates to thank for it. Players are given tickets to each game, and Ratliffe says several teammates surrendered theirs so he could get most of his loved ones in the building.
"That’s just what we do for each other," Ratliffe said. "When we’re in Texas, the Presseys (Matt and Phil) get our tickets. And when we’re in (Columbia), we give them to Marcus (Denmon) and Mike (Dixon). It helps us bond."
MUtigers.com: Mizzou vs. Oklahoma TV Info
Other Mizzou Links
MUtigers.com: Tigers Open New Year with Southern Scuffle
Mizzou Women's Basketabll
The Missourian: Missouri excelling academically and athletically
SimmonsField.com: Top 9 MU Baseball Stories of 2011: MU in the Majors & Minors