Thank you, Christopher Columbus, for this stupid but very appreciated work holiday.
So I guess there were a few non-football related developments this weekend...most of them positive...
Mizzou Soccer moved to 3-0-0 in conference with an easy 2-0 win over Texas Tech. Michelle Collins scored in the 21st minute, Alysha Bonnick scored in the 70th minute, and while the statistics--shots, shots on goal, corner kicks--were even or in Tech's favor, the outcome was never in doubt. Next up for the 10-2-1 Tigers is a weekend homestand against OU (Friday) and OSU (Sunday).
Mizzou Volleyball joined in on the Red Raider bashing with a Saturday afternoon 30-23, 31-29, 30-16 sweep of last place Tech. Wendy Wang followed up on her sickeningly strong performance against Colorado with another strong match--13 kills, .476 attack %, 5 digs, 2.0 blocks. Na Yang led Tiger attackers with 15 kills (.419). Defense has been the key for the Tigers' winning streak (now at 3), as Mizzou had an impressive 14 blocks to Tech's 5 (Amanda Hantouli, Na Yang, and Megan Wilson each led the way with 2.5) and 41 digs to Tech's 35 (led by Tatum Ailes' 10). Next up: ATM (3-5, 13-5) at home on Wednesday and a trip to Waco on Saturday to face Baylor (2-5, 9-8). If they can avoid a misstep, they could find themselves riding a 5-match win streak when Nebraska comes to town next week. The Trib has more.
Hopefully more information is on the way, but for now I'll just pass along that the Black team won Mizzou's Fall World Series, 8-6.
Alright, now it's on to football...
Your eyes aren't deceiving you. Mizzou is #11 in both the AP and USA Today polls this week, amazingly their highest standing since October 1981. The AP Poll is particularly disorienting, as Mizzou sits right behind USC and right ahead of Virginia Tech and Florida. Welcome to the big-time, Tiger fans...how's about we stay awhile??
Dave Matter empties the notebook on MU-NU. I particularly enjoyed this blurb...
How about that fake field goal by Pinkel? Writing on deadline, I didn’t make it to the postgame press conference, but I want to hear GP’s take on that call. ESPN caught a sight on the sideline that probably said enough: After Rucker dived into the end zone, Pinkel was giggling like he just yanked a chair out from under Callahan. Then smashed a water balloon over his head. Pinkel said this morning on his TV show that he thought Chase Coffman should have been credited with a touchdown catch in the third quarter — and I think most would agree — so maybe the fake was Pinkel getting those six points back.
Read enough about how well the Mizzou defense played against the Huskers? I thought not. Mike Dearmond also mentions what was quite an emotional pep talk from defensive captain Lorenzo Williams. Here's to hoping the Midwest City (OK) alumnus (my parents' alma mater!) has another outburst up his sleeve about 5 days from now.
The KC Star points out that Mizzou at #11 isn't the only strange thing about this week's polls...KU has made a splash as well.
ESPN's Mark Schlabach has a decent write-up about the surprising success of 5-1 Illinois. They continue to indirectly make us look good, though anybody who was in The Dome on September 1 isn't entirely surprised to see them doing well. I'm still not totally sure how good a coach Ron Zook is, but he's compiled some nice, likable talent, and he's got his team playing confident and united. And with a relatively easy Big Ten slate ahead of them, they're staring down 9 wins at this point.
And finally, Sunday Morning QB writes his typical 100,000 word summary of Saturday's action. He mentions that MU and KU are on a "collision course"...cannot tell you how weird that sounds (not to mention that it's not entirely accurate, but hey...I'm not going to complain about positive coverage).