This Ain’t Last Year’s Tigers
Raise your hand if you think last year’s team would have won the game Wednesday night? I’ll wait.
Look. I am a DIE-HARD Mizzou Hoops fan. Always have been. I went to plenty of games during the KA years (shudders) and cheered emphatically, so I clearly will always be a fan. But even I have to admit, as I watched the game Weds night way too loudly (sorry, neighbors), I was worried when Oregon started inching closer that somehow, some way, we were going to give it away. Call it PTSD from the Xavier game. As much as I hope for a different outcome, let’s face it, it has not typically worked out well for the Tigers in close, late game situations in the past. This time, though... it was different. I feel so many emotions about this year’s team, and all of them are positive. I asked on Twitter, pretty early on in the game, if we are (gulp).. good? I was afraid to type it. I had several people tell me to “shhh” and not jinx it, and Rock M’s very own BK wouldn’t bite TWICE (even after Mr. Rock M himself, Sam Snelling, said it), and this is coming from the guy who penned a love letter to Derek Dooley! So rude.
You're not getting me to bite. pic.twitter.com/uc1H14Tk7z— Brandon Kiley (@BKSportsTalk) December 3, 2020
Souichi Terada of the KC Star examined the new-look Tigers in his new piece, which you should all read, as he is a friend of the site and a great writer. He asked, what makes the Tigers different this time? From the story:
“Like everybody keeps saying, we’re an older team,” Pickett said. “We’ve got guys that have been here before. Just going out there, playing our game. Not changing anything. Going out there doing our best and just playing hard.”
Where Mizzou showcased its new-look self was when Oregon brought it down to a five-point game with less than a minute remaining. There was no shriveling up; the Tigers didn’t blink. They made their free throws, never letting the Ducks fully complete their comeback attempt.
They really didn’t bat an eye in the face of pressure. Bring it on, they said (or they probably said in some way). I’ll share one more thing, before I remind you again to READ THE ARTICLE.
This, which X said in the postgame last night, really resonated with me:
“This win, for me, the whole team, it was just kind of history,” Pinson said. “We just deserved it. Our fans deserved it even though they can’t be here with us right now. I feel like the whole organization deserved this win. We just all laid it out on the line and did what we had to to get the win.”
This win, first in what we hope will be a lot of wins this year, gave me hope. I felt relief that we’d gotten over this hump finally, that this might just be THE year after all of the struggles. For the team, its coaches and staff, and the fans, I feel hope. And I am so excited to watch this team going forward.
It’s entirely way too early to say this group has achieved anything, but the possibilities are real and Wednesday was the first opportunity for Martin to have his moment where he could puff his chest and say, See that! I’ve been trying to tell y’all.
This article, y’all, is worth the subscription alone. There were a few quotes in there that actually made me tear up. What can I say... I’m a softie, and CJ is a hellluva writer.
Moving on to some sweet, sweet social media stuff from Mizzou Hoops (AKA RJ Layton, who I interviewed this week— that will be coming shortly).
I am also pumped that this could be the X-Man we get all year. You love to see it.
And the bigs! The bigs!
On to the Links! We have a football game tomorrow. Go Tigers! Time for some bacon!
Yesterday at Rock M
- Sammy interviewed Jacob Davis of Arkansas Fight.
- Sam had the newest STUDY HALL for the awesome Oregon win.
- Fearless Leader Sam previewed the #3 team in the SEC: the cheating LSU Tigers.
- COMING UP: the #2 team in the SEC Hoops preview, Aaron’s 3 and Out, BK’s triumphant return to writing (welcome back, friend!) and a Pregamin
- St. Louis Post-Dispatch: Bennett Durando got some interesting takes from former MU players who are pulling for Odom in most circumstances. Like J’Mon Moore, for instance, who said, “I can love him before and after the game... Just not during the game, because he’s over there with those losers.” HA!
- STL Today: Dave Matter had a new chat (which I still need to read).
- PowerMizzou (free): Gabe and Mitchell were back with some hot taeks (mostly football) in their newest Blowin Smoke, Presented by Weston Tobacco series. For subscribers, Sean Williams examined the Mizzou-Arkansas starters as high school recruits.
- KC Star: Souichi Terada broke down the clash of the first year coaches that we’ll see on Saturday.
- Columbia Tribune: Eric Blum said that Mizzou’s Arkansas natives are leading the charge into this weekend’s matchup.
- The Maneater: Jack Soble scouted Arkansas ahead of Saturday’s game.
- Saturday Down South: Sydney Hunte wrote about Nick Bolton’s inclusion in Senior Day, though he’s only a junior, while Adam Spencer covered DC Ryan Walters’ continued relationship with now Arkansas DC, Barry Odom.
- Mizzou Football twitter started thanking to all the seniors— check it out here.
- Looks like commit Ryan Hoerstkamp will be in CoMo this weekend for the game!
who's going to be at the zou this weekend? pic.twitter.com/mv8eHoxYdE— Ryan Hoerstkamp (@RyanHoerstkamp) December 2, 2020
- Excellent news for St. Louis native and Mizzou commit, Mekhi Wingo!
- St. Louis Post-Dispatch: Hochman posted what I think is a daily video that I didn’t learn about until this morning, talking about Mizzou’s big win over Oregon. He’s a damn delight. You should watch. BenFred’s “5” focused mainly on Mizzou Hoops and that ranked team out east that we will see shortly, the Fighting Illini.
- The Athletic ($$): CJ Moore (I was wondering if we’d get an article from him when I saw him on the post game Zoom) wrote about how, now that the Tigers are seasoned AND healthy, they may finally be able to make a run under Cuonzo Martin. MUST READ... if you’re a subscriber!
- Columbia Missourian: Tyler Hollins looked at where Mizzou currently stands among its SEC peers after a week.
- Saturday Down South: Adam Spencer provided a rapid reaction to the awesomeness of Xavier Pinson and the Oregon win.
- The Maneater: Mason Arneson wrote about the Tigers’ Duck hunt. (ha)
- We’ve got TV times for the women’s SEC schedule. Mark your calendars! (more info available from the Missourian’s Shannon Belt and on MUTigers.com as well)
- Tilly is now in the Top 10 All-Time for BLOCKS.
- Out of sight but not out of mind, EIGHT players made their Tiger debuts in Mizzou’s win last week.
8️⃣ Tigers made their #Mizzou debuts in last week's season-opening win over UNA— Mizzou Basketball (@MizzouWBB) December 3, 2020
No. 0️⃣ @LDazhia
No. 1️⃣ @laurenhansen_1
No. 2️⃣ Sara-Rose Smith
No. 4️⃣ Mama Dembele
No. 5️⃣ @shannon_dufficy
No. 1️⃣2️⃣ @shugdickson
No. 3️⃣2️⃣ @_jkk29
No. 4️⃣0️⃣ @micahlinthacum #OurTownOurTeam pic.twitter.com/LGmvuDRvmU
Other Mizzou Sports
- Mizzou Gymnastics is set for their Black and Gold exhibition practice, according to MUTigers.com. The Tigers will run through their lineups and routines on all four events beginning on vault and rotating to bars, beam and floor. It will also be streamed live on Facebook Live.
- TigerStyle is reminiscing about the last time the Tigers wrestled at Hearnes. Can’t wait for them to get started up again!
Itching for a Hearnes reunion...#Mizzou’s last dual in CoMo (Feb. 22, 2020) was a GREAT one❗️— #TigerStyle (@MizzouWrestling) December 3, 2020
▪️ ranked W over Iowa State
▪️ wins in 8-of-10 bouts
▪️ 10th largest crowd in program history #TigerStyle pic.twitter.com/fwTES6gUQ4
- D1 Baseball has got good things to say about Spencer Miles.
via @d1baseball— Mizzou Baseball (@MizzouBaseball) December 2, 2020
“#Mizzou’s @spencerdmiles is a legit Friday night guy in the SEC with plus command of a sinker/slider mix. With his sharp command, he’s able to expose hitters’ weaknesses.” #C2E ⚾️ pic.twitter.com/xoL8way55s
- Wow! Volleyball’s Dariana Hollingsworth is... good.
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