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Mizzou Links, 1-9-07

Mizzou 96, UMKC 76.  Good win for the Tigers...and by 'good win', I mean a) it wasn't a loss, and b) Mizzou responded well to a late-first-half UMKC hot streak.  And I'm not sure I'd ever seen a 23-6 run in the first four minutes of the second half before.  This is a flawed team, and we'll see just how flawed on Saturday against Texas, but...we didn't lose.  Here's the box score, and here are the game stories: Big second half propels Tigers (Trib), Missouri beats UMKC (KC Star), "Tigers Hop Past Kangaroos" (Post-Dispatch...hardy har har).

Following up on Ross' link from yesterday, lots of people are talking about the decision of all of Mizzou's juniors to come back for the 2008 football season.  Dave Matter writes about it both in print and on his blog.  Graham Watson pulls the same routine--article about the juniors, blog post about the final poll standings.  While we're at it, Big Head pulls off the daily double as well...posting about Mizzou getting the last laugh in the polls, then about the returning juniors.  High five!  The Missourian has a lovely headline: "Missouri football has a good day," while the P-D's Jeff Gordon asks if Mizzou's future could be any brighter.

Rather than having to climb the ladder next season, Missouri will start near the top.

The Tigers' success will pay dividends for years to come. In the wake of the 12-victory season, the MU administration sent a strong message by upgrading the contract of coach Gary Pinkel.

In turn, Pinkel reiterated his desire to stay in Columbia for years to come. Such program stability added to Mizzou’s improved recruiting profile.

Not only did a few more Texas kids commit to the program after the Cotton Bowl, two highly regarded recruits apparently switched their commitments from other schools (Nebraska and Wisconsin) to Missouri.

Offensive lineman Dan Hoch, ranked as the top Iowa prospect by Rivals.com, reportedly switched allegiance from Nebraska to Missouri -- just as quarterback Blaine Gabbert did in the fall. And De Smet receiver Wes Kemp, Rivals.com’s No. 5 player in Missouri, switched from Wisconsin from Mizzou.

...

Remember when St. Louis kids routinely turned up their noses at Missouri? That doesn’t happen so much any more.

When there is a top-five program just two hours away, high school players and coaches are going to pay close attention to it.

The Missouri bandwagon is filling up and gaining speed.

Did you see a new name on Gordon's list of recruits?  That's right...4-star Iowa OL Dan Hoch officially changed his commitment from Nebraska to Mizzou yesterday.  We still don't know what Will Compton and Josh Williams are going to do (Williams committed to Colorado but is still supposedly keeping us on his radar), but the domino effect that Gabe Dearmond predicted a couple of months ago might actually be happening now.  Slowest dominoes ever, but better late than never.

The KC Star's Blair Kerkhoff has a nice, quick rundown of the 2007 football season.

Finally, the Missourian says Mizzou Women's Basketball is ready for a fresh start.  To say the least.