The question honors went to ZouDave this week...
Bill is "crushed at work" today so apparently I'm in charge of asking questions that eventually lead us into a pop-culture, politics fueled discussion that results in Jenna Haze being flipped off by my sister, or something like that.
1 - Final thoughts on Spring football for your team? Did you see anything that gives you either great concern or great expectations?
2 - With the Mike Anderson to Oregon business behind us (for at least another season), do you think this is something Mizzou is going to continually go through with Mike Anderson? What level of success would Missouri have to achieve to make other schools think "we can't attract a coach away from them?"
3 - Big Ten expansion: there's really too many questions here to ask, and we've covered this before but it's now once again huge news. Is Missouri going to get invited? Will Missouri accept that invite? What does this, if anything, do to our current rivalries?
4 - NFL Draft starts tomorrow. Do you like the new format of Thursday, Friday, Saturday? Where do you think Mizzou (or kansas) players will end up? Who do you think your favorite NFL team is targeting?
Michael Atchison: 1 - I wasn’t at the spring game and didn’t see a practice. Pass.
2 - I just don’t think there’s any way of knowing, and I don’t think there’s any particular success level you can reach to make yourself immune. It’s about what’s in the coach’s nature. Some guys need to look around every once in a while, and some guys just have to move (Larry Brown, Rick Pitino, Rick Majerus). I’ll just suggest to Mizzou fans to stop living in fear of the future. One day, Mike Anderson won’t be the coach here, but he is now. Enjoy it while it lasts. I hope it lasts a long time, but if it doesn’t, the program goes on. Really.
3 - No inside info, but my gut tells me that Missouri isn’t going to get invited, but that the school would jump if given the chance. If it happens, it certainly puts a damper on our current rivalries. Could we still play Kansas each year in football and basketball? Sure. But how is Kansas going to feel about us if we move and that starts a restructuring that leaves them on a lonely ice floe in the plains? If the Big Ten looks exclusively to the east, things around here might not change at all. But if they try to cherry-pick one or more Big 12 schools, dominos will start falling in wholly unpredictable ways. That’s a long way of saying "hell if I know."
4 - I think the new format is interesting, and I suspect it will make for a more dynamic second and third round, with teams having all Thursday night and all Friday day to plan, scheme and trade. And it frees up my Saturday, which I need to be freed up, because I don’t really care to watch rounds four through seven anyway. I’m not nearly enough of a draft-head to tell you where Mizzou’s guys are going to end up, but as a KC guy, I’ll give my best guess as to what the Chiefs do. First, I think they’ll make every effort to trade out of the five spot unless they think Suh is going to be there. If he is there, take him. If he’s gone and they can’t trade out of the spot, I suspect that the pick is either Eric Berry or Rolando McClain – the defense just needs too much help to take an offensive lineman at that spot unless he’s clearly the best guy on their board. Again, this is a long way of saying "hell if I know."
Doug: Your sister knows Jenna Haze? Man, I've had that dream.
1 - KU's spring game is this weekend, so barring any major injuries coming out of that event, it's nice to know the team is pretty healthy. I think it's also good that competition for positions is continuing into the fall. It's not so great that the quarterback role is cemented yet, but I'm not surprised by that fact. I think Gill would rather give the reins to Kale Pick or the juco transfer, but it sounds like Jordan Webb, the red-shirt freshman is right there to be the number one guy.
2 - I think Oregon is a special case. It's not a major, traditional power in basketball or football, but what it has that no other school can claim is the financial backing of Nike. Oregon wants something, Phil Knight will provide. I think Knight was willing to provide some crazy money for a potential star coach, because a current star was not going to go to Eugene. If Anderson continues to make the Tigers a perennial tournament team and occasional trips to the second weekend with even a Final Four, then I think he becomes harder for someone to lure away from Missouri, but Missouri is still not a "destination job" so the threat of one of the big 5 calling is always out there.
3 - Just heard Dennis Dodd on 810 and he said, paraphrasing, "If its 1-3 schools, no. If it's 4 or more, yes." I have no reason to not believe him. There's more money in expanding the conference footprint into New York state, Connecticut, or picking up Notre Dame. If all three happen, all the better for the Big 10. Dodd also pointed out the idea of adding Nebraska is a bit strange because it has not major market, and if there's a question of adding Nebraska and Missouri, then why not add Kansas instead of NU and bring in a top basketball team? Kansas can at least lay claim to the KC market, which is a much better DMA than, say, Omaha. Either way, if Missouri gets the call, of course they'll go the Big 10, but I think the Big 10 has other plans at the top of the list before they call Columbia.
4 - I swear to God, if Kansas City drafts a safety with the #5 overall pick, I'll strap a dirty bomb to my chest and drive to Arrowhead. I'm kind of hoping people are really over-thinking Suh, and that 5% chance he's sitting there when the Chiefs select comes true. Failing that, the Chiefs need to be looking offensive lineman or trading down and stockpiling some second and third round picks. I think Briscoe has a chance to be a Friday pick and Meier and Stuckey will both go on Saturday.
(30 minutes later...)
ZouDave: Well then I'll answer my own questions
1 - I try not to get too worked up over Spring football anything, because it's practice (insert Iverson joke) and we have a long way to go. But what good is this question if I don't actually answer it?
I'm concerned about the WR drops. Outside of Danario a year ago, our WRs had problems catching the ball. That doesn't appear to have changed a great deal. I don't know what the problem is (I am siding with it's not coaching, since we haven't had this problem prior to 2009) but it's a concern. Does Gabbert throw too hard? Maybe, but that's a terrible answer if that's the case. Do we have guys at WR that are great athletes and not great receivers? Very possibly. We've had that before in doses (Sean Coffey, I'm looking at you). But given that we're a passing team, we really should be able to catch the ball better.
I'm excited about our linebackers. I think we're going to have a hard time picking out our best 3 linebackers from among 5, even 6, guys which means we can constantly be running out fresh legs at that position. It should definitely be a major strength for us this year, which is crazy considering we lost Spoon.
2 - I definitely don't think that, short of a National Title, Missouri is going to be in a position where Mike Anderson isn't actively sought by other schools. We're a good program but not great, and he's a coach on the rise getting success without having that "name" program behind him to attract the 5-star kids. So far, it doesn't seem like Mike Anderson is all about money. He doesn't want to be exploited, obviously, but he also recognizes that there's something to be said for being in a good position to do well AND earn a lot of money. Missouri gives him that. And ultimately, if he keeps having the success that it looks like he can have, then Missouri will have to keep giving him raises. I agree with Atch that we need to not worry about the future so much and just go one year at a time and enjoy what we have. I will say, though, that the chances of Anderson leaving after the 2010-11 season are very, very low. I just don't see him walking away from the Seniors he will have returning that year. So I think Mizzou will get a year off of all of this next season. Beyond that? It's not worth worrying about.
3 - I guess I don't know if we're going to get an invite or not. Apparently if they're just going to 14, we may not. If they go to 16, I 100% thing we do get an invite. And I definitely think we'll take that invite if it's extended. There's just too many positives in it, mainly academic but also financially in athletics.
As for what it does to our current rivalries? I think you can kiss all of them but kansas goodbye. I don't think either Missouri or kansas would allow that rivalry to die, regardless of feelings of being left out to try or whatever. It's one of the best college rivalries around, and it will exist long beyond conference affiliation. I think we'd see Kansas City continue to be a venue for the games as well, perhaps making Arrowhead a permanent location for the football game and the Sprint Center a permanent location for the basketball game just like the Arch Rivalry in St. Louis with Illinois. And I'd be fine with that. I'm not sure we'd ever see Nebraska on the football field again, outside of a Bowl Game. I don't think there would be much effort to continue playing against KSU, CU or ISU. The Big XII South would basically be shunned, I think, but I do think Mizzou would try to schedule games against Houston, North Texas, SMU, maybe even TCU, to try and keep a pipeline to Texas open.
4 - I just hope I remember to watch the 1st round tomorrow night. I'm going to miss the all day Saturday and Sunday extravaganza of old, because that's what I grew up on and I enjoyed watching the 1st 2 rounds start-to-finish and then just constantly checking in over the next couple of days. But this is a good move for the NFL, because it puts it more into focus just like the NBA draft does. And it definitely leaves a LOT of room for dealing now that everyone will have so much time to react to what is going on. If the first round brings a few surprises and players are left on the board after #32, I think those first few teams in round 2 are going to have their phones ringing off the hook fielding offers. Could be a great opportunity for KC to get some more picks.
I think Spoon still has an outside shot at being taken in the late first round, but he should still be one of the top few linebackers taken which is great. If he's there for KC's 2nd round pick, I hope he's a consideration (as Atch said, we just have so many needs on defense). As for other Mizzou players, I wish Alexander hadn't re-re-re-injured his knee because he was certainly a 3rd-4th round pick if he's healthy. Now, I'd be shocked if he's drafted but he'll get a shot somewhere. Coulter and Baston both have marginal chances of getting their names called in rounds 6 or 7. I don't think Gregory gets drafted, but might get a tryout. I definitely don't think Perry gets drafted and he's going to have a hard time getting into NFL training camp (a la Tommy Saunders).
KC should probably try to trade down and pick up more Top 50 picks. If we could move down a few spots in the first and pick up an extra 2nd and even then something else I'd do it. If we do make the pick, it's going to be defense. I don't think we'll take a LT unless Okung is there (and he won't be). As much as I would like them to take Suh if he's there, I don't think Suh helps our defense enough and that means we have first round money tied up in Dorsey, Jackson and Suh all playing DE in a 3-4 (Suh is not a Nose in a 3-4, just not big enough). So if we do make the pick, it's probably Berry. But I think every effort to trade will be made.
ghtd36: Hey homies. I've sort of calmed down from Ron Washington's epic fail last night, and I'm ready to roundtable!
1 - Uh...it was...good? I didn't see anything, and I've found that reading into practice reports is a practice in futility anyway, so I'm just going to go with "Missouri should be No. 1 because they're awesome." Cool? Cool.
2 - Get used to this, Missouri fans. When you have a great coach -- and make no mistake: Mike Anderson is a great coach -- people are going to want your great coach, especially when he's at "little ol' Missouri," which is how more people than you think view Mizzou. He's going to get wooed every offseason. The only way that goes away in the least is if Mizzou wins a national title. A Final Four appearance doesn't help; it's got to be a title, and even then, it's no sure thing. It's the nature of the beast.
3 - I've got such tiredhead over the Big Ten expansion talk. I have no idea if Mizzou is going to get invited, but if it does, I imagine it will jump. It makes too much sense on too many different levels, especially with the coming Big XII-pocolypse in which Texas and Oklahoma join the SEC, Nebraska joins the Big 10, and Colorado is cast into a lake of fire while Quin Snyder rides off on a flying unicorn (obscure missouritigers.com reference, FTW).
4 - I like the new format, if only because i can't sit and watch three rounds at once. It's too much. I think Spoon to New Orleans late in the first round makes way too much sense, and I think Domino Axelrod would be a good fit for Denver in the second or third round. And I don't have a favorite NFL team, so go Argonauts.
ZouDave: Domino Axelrod has as much chance of getting drafted in round 2 or 3 as I do.
ghtd36: If Dez Bryant is gone before Denver in the first round, I could see the Broncs snaring Alexander in round three.
ZouDave: As much as I want him to, Alexander just isn't going to get drafted. The injury at the Senior Bowl nuked his chances. Even prior to the bowl games, he was being called a 3rd-4th rounder (somehow). IF he'd gotten to go at the Combine and show off his freak athletic talent, he would probably have moved up to 2nd-3rd round. But the injury concerns were ringing loudly with everyone already, and then he not only get re-injured but misses his window for combine and Pro Day stuff.
Just no chance. Nobody wants to put any guaranteed money on him if they can't count on him to make it through a camp healthy. I wish it weren't true, but I'm afraid it is.
Bill C.: Oh I think he'll get drafted, but not before round five. His stats and size are too freakish not to get somebody's attention. It won't be nearly as high as we felt he deserved a while back, but somebody will bite.
ZouDave: I hope you're right. I want to be wrong (Lord knows I do it enough that I should look forward to it) but I just don't see it. It reminds me too much of Devin West back in 1998. The guy was an All-American and looked like he was going to get a real shot at the NFL, but nobody took a chance on him because of the injury. As it turns out, they were right not to take a shot on him because the injury cost him his career. Danario is better than West was, but the injury thing just terrifies GMs.
RPT: Even if Alexander's NFL career doesn't work out, at least he and Tebow can SMASH UFL records together.
ZouDave: I heard that Buffalo is looking at Tebow in the 1st round. Dumbest pick ever if it happens?
ghtd36: It would be a very Buffalo thing to do.
RPT: You know what else is a Buffalo thing to do (besides bitching at the Columbia Missourian)? Losing to Dallas.
ghtd36: Dallas: so Raven.
Buffalo: not so very Raven.
RPT: By the way, can we get an editors' debate going on the Best Burger in Columbia? The will of the people is going to be clear here, but do the Lords of RMN have anything to add to the conversation?
And, sorry, Atch, "Best place to buy Michael Atchison an Oil Change Oatmeal Stout at Flat Branch Pub & Brewing" did not make the ballot. And, if it did, Shakespeare's or Booche's would probably still win.
Michael Atchison: Been a long time since I've had a burger at most of those places, but I'll take a Heidelburger for old time's sake.
ghtd36: You know, it's not going to place, but the Berg's burgers are very serviceable. Although that might be me reminiscing about Friday pre-liver-pickling dinners.
RPT: Is it possible to get sick of The Berg? Because the number of 21st's I've celebrated there this year have threatened to put me in that category.
If I see another shot book, I'm punching a baby.
ghtd36: At a later date, I'll share the story of my 21st birthday, which is subtitled "Easily The Worst 21st Birthday Ever, And It's Not Even Close."
RPT: I'll file that into "Columns I look forward to seeing on RMN," right alongside "Mrs. Bill C. Tells All."
ghtd36: We need to create a Fake Mrs. Bill C. Twitter account. Don't act like you wouldn't follow, if only to read things like:
"Bill & I started talking about the names of our future children. My suggestions: Rachel or Brian. Bill's suggestions: Abacus or LaceDarius."
RPT: OH. GOD. YES.
Make it happen.
Doug: Only if we also start a Dave's Sister Twitter feed.
"Hmmm... how will I spend today? Oh, I know, being ridiculously hot."
Okay, so it might be a one-trick feed, but I'd follow it.
ghtd36: @ZouDavesSister: "All I have left in my closet is a modest dress. So, looks like I'm going naked again."
RPT: "I'd follow it."
The "I'd hit it" of the 2010s.
Doug: I'm smelling the next Rock M Nation t-shirt.
ZouDave: so what, now it's going to be a Scratch-n-Sniff shirt? That's just weird.
Doug: You really want to associate a "Scratch-n-Sniff" joke with your sister?
ZouDave: If I didn't, surely someone else would have.
ghtd36: And you might as well keep it in the family.
/vomits a little
ZouDave: Look behind you, Greg...there's the line
(45 minutes later...)
Bill C.: Alright, I talked to the wife: she says as long as she gets access to the Twitter account, she's in. Figuring out her posts from the fake ones ... gives new meaning to the "Real or fake?" game ...
ZouDave: lol...now that could be fun
RPT: So Rock M Nation is going to play "Real or Fake" with Bill's wife?
Quoth Beerfest: "This just keeps getting better and better!"
ghtd36: Well, what do you know?
Bill C.: Her response to the real or fake game: "why not, I play real or fake with other women..."
I have the distinct impression I'm going to regret sharing that.
ZouDave: I think it just moved.
Doug: You'd be surprised how often she plays that same game with you!
ghtd36: YEAH! WHAT DOUG SAID!
Bill C.: Doug?
Doug: Yeah, I'm lost on that one, too.
ghtd36: What is going on?
ZouDave: Who the hell are you guys? And why on Earth did you make the table round?
ghtd36: Are there any horse socks? Is anybody listening to me?
ZouDave: Oh, and just to close this out properly:
It is as I prophesi....propopheti.....prophet....predicted!