1. Recruiting continues
Reading the tea leaves, it appears Mizzou might be generating a little bit of recruiting momentum. They had some pretty strong prospects from Tennessee and Georgia show up at their camp last week, and now a four-star defensive end from Illinois is giving the Tigers a more serious look.
Hendrix admitted that prior to Friday's visit (his second to Columbia since the winter), Missouri wasn't among the schools that stood out to him.
"They are now," Hendrix said.
"It was real good," Hendrix added. "I liked it a lot."
At this point, Hendrix said five schools "stand out": Tennessee, USC, Ohio State, Florida and now Missouri. He made sure to make it clear that those schools don't constitute a top-five, as he hasn't eliminated any programs and wants to remain as open as possible to the entire process. Hendrix said he is planning on taking his time with a decision.
But the movement of Missouri into that list of schools that stand out is largely because of what he didn't see on his first unofficial a few months ago, and what he did see on Friday.
"I didn't know the facilities were that nice," Hendrix said. "And they're adding more."
2. There's a lot in here that I didn't know
Missouri’s challenge to collect SEC-caliber players goes beyond finding talent. Division I baseball programs are afforded 11.7 scholarships to divide among 27 players. Most other SEC schools offer lucrative academic scholarships for in-state recruits. Such programs, several of which are funded by state lotteries, allow baseball coaches more flexibility in distributing their limited pool of athletic scholarships.
"No matter what we do we’re not going to be on a level playing field from a scholarship standpoint," Jamieson said. "Missouri attracts really good students. … We don’t have a lottery system that’s going to provide that for in-state kids."
Missouri lags behind the rest of the league in spending, too. For the 2010-11 school year, the most recent data collected by the federal government, Missouri’s total baseball expenses were $1,410,737, by far the lowest among all Big 12 and SEC teams. Louisiana State led the SEC in spending, at $6,141,433. Four other SEC programs doubled Missouri’s spending.
According to a recent Birmingham (Ala.) News report, Jamieson’s salary of $238,000 — he’s under contract through 2015 — was the lowest in the SEC, with Alabama’s Mitch Gaspard the next-lowest at $300,000.
The Trib: Once cut from MU baseball, Walsh drafted
3. Brady Deaton's legacy
5. One step closer to being done with this
Post-Dispatch: On the hoops horizon: UCLA
6. March Mat Madness
The single-elimination team tournament would be held over two weekends preceding the individual championships and following conference wrestling tournaments. The further a team advances through the dual tournament, the more points it acquires. The points are carried over to the individual championships, where wrestlers earn points for their team as they advance. Holman said there is no proposed change to the individual tournament format. The national champion will be named based on the combined points total of the individual and dual tournaments.
"I think it's a great thing," said Smith, long a proponent of adding dual meets to the national title format. "I think we have to do something to promote our sport. You have to be a TV type sport. Softball, baseball have become that. Our dual meets are made for TV."
The 24 teams would be selected by an NCAA committee. Automatic bids would be awarded to about conference tournament champions, with at-large bids issued based on a team's dual meet performance during the season, Holman said.
The top four seeds would host six-team regionals. The four regional winners would advance to one site the next weekend. That site likely will be bid out.
My father bought me a Croce's shirt in San Diego one time (from the restaurant owned by Jim Croce's widow). It had a picture of Croce on the back, and every time I wore it around campus, somebody would walk by and say "Croce! Alright!" It was like membership in a club. You either knew about (and loved) Jim Croce, or you had absolutely no idea.