1. Mizzou has an offensive line coach
University of Missouri Head Football Coach Barry Odom has added veteran offensive line coach Brad Davis to his coaching staff, as announced today. Davis, who will coach the offensive line, comes to Mizzou after spending the 2017 season at Florida as o-line coach, and he brings with him 15 years of coaching experience, including the last nine seasons running the offensive line at a variety of stops, during which time he's coached 13 linemen to all-conference honors. Details of Davis' contract will be released once fully executed, along with the completion of human resources procedures.
"I'm very pleased to have Brad and his family join our program," said Odom. "He's a tremendous teacher and mentor, and he's been lights out on the recruiting trail with his approach to building true relationships with kids. Brad has experience in the SEC and he has worked hard to earn a great amount of respect among his peers. I'm excited to have him with us, and I know he is going to do a great job helping us move forward offensively and continue building," he said.
"I'm extremely excited to join Coach Odom and his staff at Mizzou and help build on the foundation these guys have already laid," said Davis. "In playing against these guys this year, I saw a team that played hard, played physical and that enjoyed playing together. With Coach Odom, it was an easy sell, because of his passion for the University of Missouri. Even from afar, that's something I've always admired about him, not only his commitment to the school and to his kids, but really for advancing the program in any way possible. For me, the opportunity to join his program and to continue the mission that he started there, I couldn't be more excited to do that. I can't wait to get to work; I can't wait to help these guys continue the path they've been on. I'm excited to get there and to meet all the linemen, they've done a fantastic job this year, and I certainly want to continue the trend of keeping these guys going the right direction and getting better daily," Davis said.
- 2017: Florida offensive line coach
- 2016: North Texas offensive line coach and run game coordinator
- 2015: ECU offensive line coach and run game coordinator
- 2014: James Madison offensive line coach and offensive co-coordinator
- 2009-13: Portland State offensive line coach and run game coordinator
- 2008: North Carolina graduate assistant
- 2006-07: Texas A&M graduate assistant
- 2005: Doane College offensive line coach and run game coordinator
- 2003-04: Southern University Lab School offensive line coach and offensive co-coordinator
Davis was an Oklahoma offensive lineman at the turn of the century, then went into full assistant coach nomad mode. Since beginning to establish himself a bit at Portland State at the beginning of the decade, he has bounced around constantly. Missouri will be his sixth different employer in six years.
After he slowly worked his way up from FCS to the lower rungs of FBS, the Florida gig in 2017 was supposed to be his big breakthrough. He joined two-time defending SEC East champ Jim McElwain’s staff. This was supposed to be the beginning of a stable time. Instead, McElwain got fired midway through the season.
In his lone season at Florida, the Gators’ offensive line stabilized quite a bit in the run game. They improved from 99th to 34th in Adj. Line Yards despite losing two starters and dealing with some injury issues. (Their sack rate also got much, much worse, but it was his first year, and I watched Florida enough to know that at least some of that was on the quarterback. And hey, I’m trying to be positive here.)
Davis’ first (and hopefully not only) line will boast all sorts of experience. All five end-of-year starters will return, including third-year starters Paul Adams (right tackle) and Kevin Pendleton (left guard) and second-years Trystan Castillo (center), Tre’vour Simms (right guard), and Yasir Durant (left tackle). The only expected losses from the two-deep will be one-time starters Tyler Howell and Adam Ploudre.
Two vacancies filled (offensive line and inside linebackers), one or two to go. Odom still needs an offensive coordinator and quarterbacks coach. That will probably be the same person, though since FBS teams will be able to hire a 10th full-time, on-field coach beginning in January, technically he could wait and get creative if he wants.
This does mean, by the way, that Jon Cooper, the popular offensive analyst who will serve as OL coach through the bowl game, didn’t get the full-time position. We’ll see if he’s a candidate for that 10th staff spot or not.
2. If you’re into reading tea leaves...
- Linebacker Gerald Nathan Jr. of Charlotte, N.C., was committed to Colorado State but agreed to an official visit to Mizzou.
- While on said visit, he decommitted from Colorado State.
Please respect my decision pic.twitter.com/nyfu4Am5gn— Gerald Nathan Jr.™ (@Ge_Nathan13) December 16, 2017
I believe I will be prepping a “Gerald Nathan commits to Mizzou” post for later this weekend.
3. Wear your best/worst holiday gear to Mizzou Arena on Tuesday.
You might win a $50 team store gift card, apparently. (That’s either the best or worst promotional release I’ve ever seen from Mizzou. Not sure.)
Your Mizzou schedule for the weekend:
- Men’s Basketball vs. North Florida at Mizzou Arena (Saturday, 7:30 p.m. CT, SEC Network)
- Women’s Basketball vs. Indiana in West Palm Beach (Sunday, 12:15 p.m. CT, video here)
For fun, here’s a whole bunch of Mizzou 3-pointers.
- Wrestling in the Reno Tournament of Champions (all day Sunday, video here)