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Mizzou Links, 1-30-09

So apparently there are less than 200 tickets remaining for tomorrow's Baylor game, so if you're interested in going, better hurry up.  And speaking of which, the KC Star has a small preview up about the game.

Time to play the "degree of denial" game!  Tubby Smith was very emphatic in his denial of interest in the open Alabama job, but Mike Anderson was only somewhat emphatic.  OOOOOH.  I realize they're an SEC school and all, but is Alabama going to throw out the cash it would take to steal a coach from another BCS basketball?

Along with the denial game, it's time to also play the "Let's keep asking Leo Lyons about his lack of playing time until he breaks down" game as well!  Didn't the Missourian write this exact same story about three days ago, or was that somebody else?  Like, with some of the same quotes?  Meanwhile, in his latest vlog, Mike Dearmond reminds people that it's pretty silly to pin all the blame on Leo when things aren't going well...

Less than a week from Signing Day, you know there are plenty of recruiting links floating about.  The first one comes from not PowerMizzou, but ESPN.  It's not a very fun one--it's a Bruce Feldman wrap-up of Miami's solid recruiting class, and it includes a Sheldon Richardson blurb that's been making the rounds.

The timing of Whipple's hire is big in that UM also will be hosting blue-chipper Sheldon Richardson -- a nimble 6-foot-4, 280-pounder committed to Mizzou -- this weekend on an official visit. Many recruiting sites have pegged Richardson as one of the top DT recruits in the country, but apparently he is intrigued by playing tight end in college and he might get that chance at Miami, especially since the status of starting tight end Dedrick Epps is up in the air as he tries to recover from a late-season ACL injury that could sideline him for all of 2009. The Canes suddenly are extremely thin at tight end.

"Well, my father is just leaving the decision up to me, and my mother wants me to stay close to home," Richardson told "My brother said it depends on what position I want to play. If I want to play tight end I could play tight end in Miami because Miami would be a better fit. I just don't know yet what position I want to play, so that's what else makes the decision so hard, because my body weight fluctuates up and down."

First of all, how in the world would you be "a better fit" at anywhere else in the country if you want to play tight end?  I realize he's bulkier than Chase Coffman or Martin Rucker, but...hello?  Is it just a pure playing time issue?  Because uhh, you're a five-star recruit who returns kickoffs at 280 pounds...pretty sure you'll see the field and about 50-80 passes a year at Mizzou if you want to play tight end.  Granted, I'd personally prefer you play DE or DT, but's your call.

Second of all...nevermind.  Na na na na na, this isn't happening.  Na na na na, he'll sign with Mizzou on Wednesday.  I'm not even going to link to Bryan Burwell's "Leave Sheldon Alone!" column.  (D'oh!) Moving on.

For other recruiting links, we naturally turn to PowerMizzou.  We've got your last pre-Signing Day Chamber!!!!!!, which includes word of a shoo-in commit, a possible commit, and an uphill battle.  We've got a pretty strong article about a weekend visitor, 6'4 Shreveport WR L'Damian Washington, and the tough life he's led to get to D1 football.  We've even got a list of potential Junior Day (in Columbia) visitors.

Oh yeah, and in one more non-PowerMizzou link, it appears that Houston DE Terrance Lloyd has made a "staying close to home" commitment switch from Mizzou to Baylor.  Good times.  This recruiting class isn't wrapping up in the happiest way imagineable.  Just land Sheldon.  That's all I care about at this point.

Finally, today's the last day to submit your Wall of Excellence ballot!  Be sure to do so if you haven't...a couple of the races are extremely close.