On Friday afternoon, Deadspin posted a pretty fun open question for readers: What is your earliest sports moment? I have a very, very vague memory of watching Tony Dorsett playing for the Dallas Cowboys, probably around 1981 or 1982, but after thinking long and hard, I'm pretty sure my first vivid overall memory is this:
No wonder I became a college football fan.
I also seem to have a relatively vague memory of one of my parents (my dad, I think) being pretty mad about the 1984 Texas-Oklahoma game from a few weeks earlier, when Texas pulled off a controversial tie.
(Here's your reminder that I grew up in western Oklahoma and not Missouri.)
But never mind overall sports -- I thought it would be interesting to quiz you guys on something Missouri-specific. What is your earliest Mizzou memory?
Indeed, I grew up 500 miles away from Columbia, and the Internet hadn't quite made it to my hometown yet. So any direct exposure I had to Mizzou would have been either via radio when the Tigers were playing Oklahoma or maybe Oklahoma State in football, via TV when they were on (a major rarity in the mid-1980s), or via game recap in the Daily Oklahoman.
I had to think about this pretty hard and check some records, but I'm pretty sure my first two semi-clear Mizzou memories are these:
1. Oklahoma 77, Missouri 0 (1986). It's such an amazing score. I seem to recall either my father or my conscience asking me whether I was serious about this "liking Mizzou" thing. (I was born in Columbia while my dad was in school here -- that's my tie, and I decided it would be fun to root for a team nobody else was.) This debacle is not online, though apparently the 51-6 game from the year before is.
2. Xavier 70, Missouri 69 (1987). This one is online.
Missouri was a No. 4 seed with a chance to play Mike Krzyzewski's Duke in the second round and Bobby Knight's Indiana in the Sweet 16. Instead, the Tigers lost in gut-wrenching fashion to 13-seed Xavier. Just as they had to 6-seed UAB (by two) in the first round the year before, 11-seed Rhode Island (by seven) the year after, and, of course, 14-seed Northern Iowa (by late 3-pointer) two years after that.
That's ... super depressing. So I decided to include what I think is my first good Mizzou memory above: the 1989 Big 8 Tournament final against Oklahoma.
But I'm stubborn and decided to be a Mizzou fan anyway. Maybe you have a better first memory? I hope?