Random thoughts about the Big 12 before I get to the Links...
- OU's not losing to OSU next week, so last night's Tech win ends up meaning nothing for us (though it would be freaky if they did lose to OSU, as they would end up pulling exactly what UT pulled last year to allow OU to win the south...right down to the two losses and the RSFr QB getting hurt), especially since we're no longer trying to hop #2 Oregon. Win out, and we're almost certainly in the title game no matter who we play in the Big 12 title game. The OU loss helped Ohio State and West Virginia tremendously, but it really had no impact on us at all.
- Holy crap...how unlucky was OU last night? Has anything ever gone more wrong for a team in such an important game? You lose your starting QB early in the 1st, you lose the dude who was stepping in for your already-injured stud DE (Alan Davis, subbing for Auston English and playing well), you get relatively screwed on 4th-and-goal in the fourth quarter (for the 1138th time...how can replay suck this bad??), you almost tie the game anyway, then you lose Demarco Murray to a dislocated kneecap on the on-side kick that you had to attempt because you got screwed on the 4th-and-goal earlier in Q4. OUCH. I realize not too many people are going to be sympathetic to OU for anything, but...that's brutal.
- How hard must Pig Brown hit? Michael Crabtree had such a case of alligator arms against us, but he had no problem running through and getting hit by OU's secondary last night.
- I'm glad KU actually played really well last night. Playing the "common opponents" game, we outplayed KU in most other matchups (we beat CU, KSU, and ATM by more, and they only beat NU by 2 more than we did), and I needed a reality check. They're averaging 55 points a game in November. Not bad, but bring it on.
- If the articles are true, and KSU fans were really chanting "Beat KU!" to Mizzou players after the game yesterday, then KSU has completed a dramatic turnaround...from the only team I hated more than NU to possibly my favorite North rival. I still hate Ron Prince, and let's be honest--"favorite North rival" is like saying "favorite rotting tooth", but still...congrats, Wildcats.
- Ohmigod...I'm watching College Football Final right now, and Lou Holtz just defended KU's schedule by saying they killed Central Michigan, who beat Western Michigan, who just beat Iowa. Holy crap. Uhh, Lou? We beat Western Michigan, who beat Iowa, who beat Illinois, who beat Ohio State. How was that one? Oh, and Lou? We beat Illinois too. This is a fun game. I can't tell you how encouraged I am that Lou favors KU. And while we're at it, hey John Saunders? Instead of suggesting that Mizzou should be worried because they struggled so much with KSU today, could you maybe mention that KU only beat KSU by 6? Oy...it's 6.5 days to kickoff, and I'm already in full whine mode. This is going to be a long week. I apologize to my wife and everybody who has to spend time with me over Thanksgiving. Let's just move on to the Links...
Links after the jump. Click 'Full Story'...
A couple quick non-football notes: Mizzou Soccer beat SEMO in a shootout Friday night to advance to the second round of the NCAAs. It's a little worrisome that they needed OT to take out SEMO, but they outshot the Redhawks 26-3...it was just one of those games where the shots didn't go in. They advanced anyway. Now they play #8 USC (1pm, Walton Stadium), and needless to say...the shots better find the net this time.
Meanwhile, Mizzou Volleyball's NCAA chances took a blow with a 3-1 loss at ATM last night. They're now 9-9 in conference (alone in 6th) and 16-11 overall. I guess they could get in if they split their next two matches (at OU, CU at home), but it's not highly likely. At this point, they probably need to win in Norman to get in for sure.
Alright, more about other sports on some other day...
We'll start with my favorite link: the box score. Now that that's out of the way, it's on to the storylines...and as always, you can probably guess what they are.
. On to Arrowhead (PowerMizzou). Missouri finally ready to talk about Kansas (Missourian). MU-KU tickets now selling for $400 and up (Missourian). Preliminaries finished, MU awaits storm on horizon (Post-Dispatch).
. Tigers take Manhattan (Trib). Missouri whips Kansas State (KC Star). Tigers ready for primetime (Post-Dispatch). Now or never time for K-State (Manhattan Mercury). Cats' bowl hopes take another hit (Topeka Capital-Journal).
. Maclin ends touchdown return drought for Missouri (Missourian). MU's Maclin will be key against KU (KC Star). A record day for Maclin (Post-Dispatch). Freshman receiver has big day for surging Tigers (Manhattan Mercury).
. With talent to spare, this Missouri team flies in the face of forgettable past (Joe Walljasper, Trib).
. Special teams are good, bad, ugly (Trib).
. Game Notes (Trib), Notes (Post-Dispatch), Tiger notebook (PowerMizzou), Questions & Answers (Trib), Report Card (Post-Dispatch), Handing out the grades (PowerMizzou).
And finally...the first of many of these stories this week: Border War: An Uncivil Beginning to Great Rivalry (Blair Kerkhoff, KC Star).
In understanding the passion of top college rivalries, it’s enough to know that Ohio State detests Michigan, Auburn and Alabama divides a state, and others are equally spirited.
Then there’s Missouri vs. Kansas.
Contests go by the name Border War, the nickname not a product of the schools’ publicity departments but because Missourians and Kansans who mostly lived close to the border once waged real war against each other.
Hostilities date to pre-Civil War days and involve the issues that tore apart a nation. Bleeding Kansas became a war zone over the slavery question with deadly consequences. Murder and mayhem broke out between the opposing factions.
The country has no idea what it's getting into this coming weekend. And for that, I give thanks.