1. The Missouri/Kentucky comparisons continue as game-day approaches.
I touched on this in an article on Tuesday, laying out why Mark Stoops receiving more time to turn things around at Kentucky is not an apples-to-apples comparison to Barry Odom’s situation at Missouri.
Looks like that general thought is more common.
Bernie Miklasz of 101ESPN in St. Louis wrote a column expressing many of those same ideas, which is summed up by the URL: Barry Odom shouldn’t need as much time as Mark Stoops needed at Kentucky.
The Tigers just can’t lose this one and slide to 0-4 in conference play. No one realistically expected Mizzou to defeat Georgia and Alabama. But the Tigers spit up a win at South Carolina, a costly giveaway that makes it impossible to have a 2-2 SEC record by beating Kentucky. A team with this much talent shouldn’t be 1-3 in the SEC; 0-4 would be unacceptable.
Circling back to Odom’s premise — with the coach citing Stoops in making a low-key appeal for more time — well, I have to throw the flag on that one. That’s a false start.
Stoops began to turn the KY program around in his fourth season. In this, his sixth season, Stoops has the Wildcats poised to have their most successful record since winning nine times in 1984.
But Odom shouldn’t need three seasons to turn Mizzou around, shouldn’t need six seasons to get the Tigers up to the standard of a nine-win team.
He then explains the reasons why the turnaround at Missouri shouldn’t be similar to Kentucky, especially focusing on the talent issue. Kentucky has had some recruiting success under Stoops; however, many of those high-profile players they landed did not pan out. Instead, the offense is led by Benny Snell (a 5.5 3-star, per Rivals) and the defense is led by Josh Allen (ditto).
Either way, Bernie’s column is worth a read.
2. This feels like a make or break game, doesn’t it?
Ben Frederickson of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch lays out all the reasons why Missouri being favored over Kentucky doesn’t make much sense, and has some very good points.
Particularly this one:
UK’s ranking is legitimate. The Wildcats are 6-1 with two wins against teams that were ranked at the time. The Wildcats won at No. 25 Florida by a score of 27-16. The Gators (6-1) are now ranked ninth and have not lost since. The Wildcats also thumped No. 14 Mississippi State 28-7. The Bulldogs are no longer ranked, but they did beat a top-10 Auburn team 23-9 since their loss to UK.
But, Vegas is right more often than its wrong. They didn’t build all those gaudy buildings on charity, did they?
This is from a Saturday Down South article, with the quotes from Chris Fallica (The Bear on College Gameday):
“This is something I talked about with Stanford Steve when we did our pod, I went back and looked, this is one of those lines — the ole Lee Corso ‘somebody knows something games’ — I went back to the last 40 years, there have been eight instances of a team that was unranked and was at least a seven-point favorite over a team in the top 12.”
So according to the ESPN researcher, a game like the upcoming contest between Kentucky and Missouri has only occurred eight times in the previous 40 years. The Bear went on to discuss what happened in those eight games over the years.
“Those eight teams all won the game, seven of them covered,” Fallica shared. “Somebody knows something is undefeated and somebody is trying to tell you, that Missouri is the right side in this game.”
That certainly bodes well for Missouri on Saturday.
Yesterday at Rock M
- Josh Allen leads one of the best defenses in the country for Kentucky
- Previewin’ SZN: Florida Gators
- What will Mizzou do without Jontay Porter?
- Just a reminder that this guy visited Missouri last weekend and is cousins with Missouri’s strength coach:
- Here’s the latest Missouri football hype video:
- From our sister site, A Sea of Blue: Mark Stoops previews Missouri, gives QB update (which isn’t really much of an update)