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Barry Odom probably won’t hire a new offensive coordinator until after the Texas Bowl

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Here are today’s Mizzou Links.

Hey, Chase!

It’s Texas Bowl Game Week ... sort of. Mizzou and Texas play in Houston next Wednesday, so we’re just a little more than a week out. Regardless, Mizzou Football had a media availability session this weekend, so it kind of feels like an in-season Monday. All we need is a depth chart.

Some of the topics covered on Saturday:

The new OC

Odom is taking his sweet time looking for a Josh Heupel replacement.

“I don’t want to move before the bowl game,” he said. “I’m interviewing guys every day between now and then to make sure we get the right fit for who we need and what the program needs. There’s a lot of guys that are interested in the position both in house and out of house. I’m very confident we’ll find a great one to go lead us into many years to come. I don’t want to rush into it, but also the urgency to find someone to get them in place is important as well.”

As that article and others mentioned, one OC candidate was on something of an official visit this weekend: UCLA’s Jedd Fisch.

The former Jim Harbaugh assistant ended up at UCLA this year, and while he couldn’t save Jim Mora’s job, he still kicked butt: the Bruins improved from 82nd to 16th in Off. S&P+ and mixed the strong short-yardage rushing you’d hope for from a Harbaugh guy with a pass-first, up-tempo system that maximized the talents of quarterback Josh Rosen.

Fisch is serving as interim head coach at UCLA until the Bruins play Kansas State in the Cactus Bowl. That game kicks off the day before Mizzou-Texas. If Odom chooses to go that route (and Fisch chooses to come), the timing of a post-bowl announcement seems to match up about right.

Swag

Terez Hall liked his Academy choices.

Each Missouri player was given four "points" to spend on gifts courtesy of the bowl's corporate sponsor, Academy Sports + Outdoors. Bowl-eligible teams across the country are enjoying the perks of postseason play.

Junior linebacker Terez Hall chose to spend his points on an electric blender bottle, a portable charger and a two-point pair of JBL headphones.

"I thought about a little scheme," Hall said. "I can listen to some music in the weight room with the headphones I got, plus I've got my shake with the blender. Then, if my phone needs charging, (I have the) portable charger."

The NFL

Drew Lock has not made a decision yet...

All of which explains why Lock has a decision to make about 2018. He expects to announce whether he’ll enter next year’s NFL draft or return to Mizzou for his senior season sometime after MU’s bowl game. Underclassmen have until Jan. 15 to declare for the draft. The outcome of the Texas Bowl won’t factor into his decision, he said Saturday.

“Win or lose I’m going to look at (the decision) the same,” he said. “I’m still taking in information right now. I’m going to make the best decision for me, me and my family. In the end, whatever I decide I’ll just know it’ll be what I feel is best.”

...and Terry Beckner Jr. got a chance to explain his decision to stay.

“I want to better myself,” the former No. 1 recruit in the country said. “You can’t better yourself without your education. That’s the main part.” [...]

[On not waiting around for his NFL draft evaluation] “That ain’t me,” Beckner said. “I just like to worry about one thing at a time. Take it slow and it’ll work itself out.”

That’s why Beckner didn’t like the idea of going to the NFL and coming back to MU to earn his degree later.

Texas ties

Mizzou loves Jordan Elliott. Thanks, Tom Herman!

“He’s got tremendous quickness, great leverage,” Odom said. “He’s been a tremendous teammate. I’ve admired the way he’s handled his situation.”

“That’s a special player,” Beckner said of his future sidekick. “He’s going to surprise people. A lot of people have heard of him … but they’re going to hear about him next year for sure.”

Meanwhile, at least a few Tigers understand the draw of a Mizzou game against Texas.

Moore isn’t the only connection to Texas that Missouri has. Not only is Texas a former Big 12 opponent for the Tigers, but a host of coaches have ties to Oklahoma, the Longhorns’ counterpart in the Red River Showdown.

Defensive coordinator Ryan Walters, Joe Jon Finley, new offensive line coach Brad Davis, Brian Odom and Jon Cooper have either played or coached at Oklahoma.

They’ve spoken about Texas often, head coach Barry Odom said.

“Every minute of the day. It’s awesome,” Odom said.

The Tigers won’t be lacking for motivation when they take the field Dec. 27th.

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