Photo via Bill Carter.
Mizzou Football Links
No more separate MIZZOUEXPANSIONAPALOOZA™ 2011 links ... for at least a day or two, dammit. Today, we lead with real football.
- It still makes me a little nervous for Blaine Gabbert to be starting this early in his rookie season, but circumstances require it. Let's see what he's got.
- Not sure I can co-sign the "Broyles & Stills might be the best receiving duo in college football" idea below, simply because Stills needs to prove to me that he's going to semi-consistently come up big like he did in Tallahassee. If he does, then ... yeah, co-sign.
- Check out the podcast I did with Allen from Blatant Homerism below! Only about 94% of it was made out-of-date in less than two hours by the "Pac-12 isn't expanding" news!
- Um, I would hope that Henry Josey is indeed gaining in confidence. Averaging eleventy billion yards per carry tends to do that to you.
- Sigh. I was hoping you didn't do anything wrong, Derrick. But it was pretty obvious you did.
Blatant Homerism (Self-Share!): PODCAST: Missouri Tigers Coming to Town
Post-Dispatch: Henry Josey is gaining confidence
Crimson & Cream Machine: What to expect: OU offense vs. MU defense
MUtigers.com: Gameday FootBlog: Oklahoma
KC Star: Mizzou's Jerrell Jackson fills up Oklahoma bulletin board
Daily Oklahoman: OU fullback Trey Millard seeks bragging rights beyond a ring Saturday against Missouri
Daily Oklahoman: Ryan Broyles, Kenny Stills might be best receiving duo in college football
Last Year Was Awesome
PowerMizzou: Powered Up: Looking back, looking forward
That's the fan's side of things. But what about those who were directly involved? I asked some of the Missouri players what they remember about that game nearly a year later. Here are their responses:
Wide receiver Jerrell Jackson: "Really that opening kickoff return. That's one thing that stood out. It was exciting to see that." [...]
Defensive end Jacquies Smith: "Probably just our crowd. Once you ran out the tunnel, you could just feel it. Electric."
Defensive tackle Dominique Hamilton: "When Aldon got the interception and he ran it back, I was happy for him. I went into the locker room and he was like, 'Oh, we're gonna win this game for you. Hands down, he was like, 'I don't care. We're winning this game for you.' He patted me, I'm sitting there in pain. I go back out, the game's won, I'm out there on crutches, it was a good feeling. I felt like, at that moment, after the game, I didn't have no pain in my ankle. It was just cool."
Last Week Was Awesome
We Are Mizzou: Offensive Play of the Week
We Are Mizzou: It's Officially the Gabbert Era in Jacksonville
KC Star: Ex-Tiger Gabbert to make first NFL start Sunday for Jacksonville
Shutdown Corner: Jaguars hand the keys to Blaine Gabbert
There's nothing to be gained from keeping McCown under center. He's not winning you games, and he's not your quarterback of the future. A rookie quarterback's got to get experience at some point. This is the right call.
Now, if you believe that Jacksonville should've moved to add another non-McCown veteran quarterback before the season, that's a whole different point. I'm not arguing at all that the "play the rookie immediately" philosophy is definitively better than the "let the rookie sit and learn under a capable veteran" philosophy.
This is not a decision you make because Cam Newton and Andy Dalton are playing well. They've got nothing to do with it, and every quarterback is different. They're two-week success stories, but guys like Philip Rivers(notes) and Aaron Rodgers(notes) make a good argument for the sit-and-wait option, too.
It's just that the Jaguars don't really have the latter option.
Among the four quarterbacks taken in the first round, Gabbert (10th overall) is only the second one to get a starting nod. Newton's tearing it up in Carolina, but Jake Locker (eighth overall, Tennessee) and Christian Ponder (12th overall, Minnesota) have yet to get the call. Dalton, the second-rounder, has started both games for Cincinnati.
Guess I Have To Mention This, Eh?
KC Star: Former MU running back Derrick Washington found guilty of sexual assault
Post-Dispatch: Derrick Washington guilty in sex assault case
Five More Thoughts
- On first glance, Chuck Neinas seems like an odd hire. He's older than dirt, and he's spent the last two decades as a hiring consultant. Maybe this is intended to be some sort of "We're looking at expanding, and who better than a head-hunter to find candidates?" move, but ... we already know the candidates. Regardless, the Big 8 was pretty awesome in the 1980s when he was commish, so I guess I shouldn't complain.
- The Post-Dispatch article on Mizzou's position in the Big 12 was interesting. I guess I could still see the SEC agreeing to pull Mizzou in if they determined it wouldn't kill the Big 12 (and I don't think it would now that OU has
willfully forfeitedlost its leverage), but that's probably going to take a while, and I can't imagine anything happens before 2012.
- Never change, Gary Pinkel.
- IF the Big 12 can get its act together, both in terms of stability and equality, there really hasn't ever been a better time to look to expand. With the ACC still looking at potentially bringing in UConn and maybe Rutgers, then the Big East is very vulnerable, and West Virginia and Louisville would be lovely additions. The problem is, nobody wants to join a conference where the members all hate each other and Texas is still seen as having all the power.
- Seriously, never change, Gary Pinkel.
Dan Beebe Stepping Down
SB Nation: Dan Beebe May Be Replaced By Chuck Neinas As Big 12 Commissioner
The Trib: Report: Beebe Out, Neinas In
Dodd writes: "One highly placed source said the conference was moving quickly to replace Beebe who had been under fire from some conference members after recent instability within the league. Neinas, currently a well-known college consultant, is expected to be named interim commissioner."
Neinas was the Big Eight commissioner from 1971-80 and is mostly known for being considered the preeminent consultant for college coaching hires. In fact, Missouri hired him 1998 to conduct its search for an athletic director, when the school hired Mike Alden — shortly after Neinas worked for Oklahoma to land MU's Joe Castiglione for the Sooners' AD job.
ESPN.com: Dan Beebe working to leave job as Big 12 Conference commissioner, report says
EDSBS: DAN BEEBE'S QUANTUM LEAP
Bless You, Gary Pinkel, But You're Soooooo Getting Fined Or Something
The Trib: Pinkel calls Big 12 situation "sad" and "embarrassing"
KC Star (Campus Corner): Pinkel levels another blast at Big 12
Dr. Saturday: Gary Pinkel on the 'crazy,' 'sad,' 'embarrassing' state of the Big 12: 'We've got problems in our league."
So ... Mizzou's Staying, Right?
Post-Dispatch: Mizzou's future in Big 12 may be in flux
Indicative of continuing fluidity in the landscape, a knowledgeable source on realignment said MU remains in the eye of the SEC as that conference studies where the Big 12 stands.
The perspective is somewhat evolved from a previous stance by the SEC that it would back off any thoughts of Mizzou unless the Big 12 crumbled.
Instead, while the SEC remains mindful of not destroying the Big 12, it still is scrutinizing whether the Big 12 indeed will last.
Beyond that, the SEC also appears to be analyzing whether MU leaving would cripple the Big 12's recovery efforts, particularly in terms of what the departure would mean to the conference's television deals and thus whether legal issues could be at play as they are with Texas A&M's departure from the Big 12 to the SEC, a move that remains in traction.
Although the SEC is working on models for 13-school competitive formats, there is little doubt that 14 makes more sense from a divisional and logistical standpoint, not to mention in terms of scheduling weekly conference games.
Oklahoma Wanted To Stay All Along! Really, Guys!
Daily Oklahoman: Oklahoma says it's committed to the Big 12
Daily Oklahoman: SOURCE: Oklahoma ultimately sought Big 12 reform, not Pac-12 move
“But frankly, we wanted the impression out there that we might go to the Pac-12 because that gave us some leverage,” the source said. “We were using that as leverage to say, ‘Hey, you want us to stay? Let's have some of these reforms.'”
Among the changes: removing Dan Beebe as Big 12 commissioner; adopting common rules for individual networks like the Longhorn Network; phasing in revenue sharing from primary television rights; and requiring a commitment of rights of more than five years from conference schools, which would commit all of their game revenues to the Big 12 during that time and make moving to another league difficult to impossible.
College Football Talk: For Sooners, spinning is winning
For the record, the word leverage was used six times in that piece. As someone on Twitter opined, if you have to tell someone you have leverage, you don’t. Or, as one Pac-12 official said in an email, “that’s was the best laugh I’ve had all day.”
Texas Willing To Make "Concessions"
Austin American-Statesman: Dodds: Big 12 can be salvaged, but UT-A&M rivalry probably can't
Well ... Yeah
Lubbock Avalanche-Journal: Tech President: Tech would've gone to Pac-12 had three rivals been accepted
Frank the Tank: The Rasputing 12 (Minus 1 Minus 1 Minus 1)
College Football Talk: Report: Big 12 to host 'stability' teleconference
The Missourian: Realignment Q&A: Is the Big 12's heart beating again?
The Missourian: TIMELINE: History of Big 12
Daily Oklahoman: Big 12 is the conference that refuses to die
Daily Oklahoman: OSU President Burns Hargis: Best option is to reform and stabilize Big 12 Conference
Senator Blutarsky: The Big 12, where a good time is had by all
Austin American-Statesman: Dodds: Big 12 can be fixed, Aggie rivalry in jeopardy, Longhorn Network off-limits
Dallas Morning News: Tommy Tuberville cautiously optimistic about Big 12's future
After Stability ... Expansion!
Daily Oklahoman: Big 12 expansion targets: BYU, TCU, West Virginia likely at top of list
KC Star (Campus Corner): Expansion must be Big 12 priority
Other Mizzou Links
I watched most of last night's volleyball game on ESPNU. I came away extremely impressed with Iowa State's defense. They played like a top 10 team last night, and they never gave Mizzou a chance. Mizzou did a little better with each progressive set, but ISU was just too strong.
MUtigers.com: Volleyball Falls at No. 16 ISU, 3-0
The Maneater: Iowa State sends Missouri packing with sweep
MUtigers.com: VIDEO: TigerStyle Offseason Training
The Trib: MU shows better commitment to tennis
When I heard they were making Moneyball into a movie, I was horrified, just because I was missing the point -- I was thinking in terms of "How do they make stats into a movie," when really a "Guy does his job unconventionally" plot was always right in front of my face. Really excited about the movie now.
Grantland (Bill Barnwell): Viva Las Vegas: How to Find the Creamy Middle on an NFL Bet
Roger Ebert: Moneyball (****)