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Drew Lock just had a very, very good month

Here are today’s Mizzou Links.

NCAA Football: Vanderbilt at Missouri Denny Medley-USA TODAY Sports

Monday was Mizzou media day, which meant Barry Odom and Josh Heupel at the podium once more. Our Tramel Raggs was there to grab film.

Barry Odom:


Missouri Head Coach Barry Odom addresses the media during his weekly press conference

Posted by Rock M Nation on Monday, October 30, 2017

Josh Heupel:


Missouri Offensive Coordinator Josh Heupel discusses Drew Lock's development over the last 5 games

Posted by Rock M Nation on Monday, October 30, 2017

There were many topics to cover.

Sudden bowl hopes:

“It’s very important to have clear, distinct goals for your guys and help them through the process with that,” Odom said Monday. “This team, where we are at this point in the season, it’s really important to have one voice. That’s why we meet as a team so often. We need to focus on having a great Tuesday practice and prepare for what we have to do preparation-wise to wake up and have a great Wednesday. If we take it day by day that suits us better.”

Playing against a Florida team in its first game with an interim coach:

“For us, any comparison to when it’s happened before won’t really relate to this current situation for me because we’re two different teams,” Odom said. “It’s a different season, a different group of guys. I think if you look at offensively and defensively what they’ve done up to this point, I would imagine they (Florida) would stay pretty true to that. Maybe some tweaks here and there, but there always are going into a game.”

A week of high-volume recruiting news (all of it bad):

“We’ll finish it up with hitting the right fit for the right position,” Odom said. “Next week, we’ll get some more news. Some good, some bad.”

The most common topic at hand, though: Drew Lock’s incredible month.

  • Drew Lock in September: 52% completion rate, 15.9 yards per completion, 4.5% INT rate, 138.8 passer rating
  • Drew Lock in October: 66% completion rate, 16.0 yards per completion, 1.5% INT rate, 195.9 passer rating

Yeah, playing two cupcakes (Idaho and UConn) in October and only one in September (Missouri State) had a little to do with that dramatic upswing. But only a little. Lock also fared as well as anybody against Georgia and threw for 355 yards against Kentucky too. He’s taking what the defenses give him. He’s using the entire field and all four members of the receiving corps. He’s confident as hell.

“Looking back on the Georgia game, that first half we were confident in the way we played,” he said, noting the Tigers’ 53-28 loss on Oct. 14, when the offense managed 312 yards against the Bulldogs, more than any Georgia opponent this season. “We didn’t win the game and score as many points as we needed to … but we took a step forward that game, where we know we can come out and compete against any defense.”

His coaches have noticed.

“He’s a lot better player now than he was at any point last season,” coach Barry Odom said. “For him growing and continuing to grow in the offense and also having some confidence about the receivers running the correct routes and with his pre-snap reads and having a million reps at all the different looks that he’s getting, the experience factor is really starting to kick in for him.

It’s leading his QB coach and offensive coordinator to make a pretty favorable comparison.

“He’s a lot better player than I was,” Heupel said about Drew Lock during Monday’s media day. “He’s got some physical tools that are special.”

This is the Lock we hoped to see all year, and we saw it for basically a month straight. If we see it again in November, Mizzou’s chances of going from 1-5 in the first half of the year to 5-1 (or, technically, better) in the second are infinitely better than we thought two weeks ago. To state the obvious, this Saturday will tell us a lot. I’m avoiding getting my hopes up until I see what this team does against Florida.

(Yes, this rash of success has led to a little bit of “2018 Draft?” buzz. No, we’re not addressing it yet. If he keeps posting 190 passer ratings against SEC defenses, we’ll have to. But not yet.)

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