1. I still wish I knew how much of an impact the Mizzou boycott was going to have...
There were no sports information directors present when captain Ian Simon spoke. He read the statement from a smartphone screen with microphones from around the country, the world, shoved in his face. About 25 reporters, almost all of whom were white, stood on the quad to listen. That's an irony that shouldn't be ignored. I didn't think about it at the time, though. What struck me then was simply the moment. The many different microphones. That the reporter with the accent didn't know Harris' name. The magnitude of it all.
With Wolfe's resignation, football was back. And soon after, the national media decamped, most of them by the following day. The what of the story had been covered and disseminated across the country, the world—but what about the why?
So many of the people who reached out to me for more information about what happened at MU had similar sentiments: How did it get to this point? Isn't demanding the ousting of a university system president extreme? Isn't a hunger strike extreme?
2. Life did not end when the defensive line coach left town
But those still in mourning Kuligowski's departure, imminent long before Miami became known as the destination, might be overdoing it a bit. Here's why:
1. Chris Wilson, the defensive line coach Odom hired, is no slouch. Nineteen of his 23 years as a college coach have been spent coaching defensive lines. He's worked for powerhouses such as Southern Cal, Georgia, Mississippi State and Oklahoma. He can cite linemen Leonard Williams, the No. 6 pick in 2015, and Fletcher Cox, the No. 12 pick in 2012, as pupils.
SOURCES, etc., but I've been hearing about a couple more names of coaches that might end up on staff, and they fit the Wilson/Cross profile: experienced hands who have spent years at big-name schools. Wilson is certainly one of those experienced hands, and while I would have loved to keep Kul on staff, life goes on.
3. Gary Pinkel was watching the Cotton Bowl with a mic on last night
Dave Matter watched so we didn't have to look at Paul Finebaum in a tux.
Reminder, Gary Pinkel is doing live commentary of Cotton Bowl on SEC Network— Dave Matter (@Dave_Matter) January 1, 2016
Pinkel on no early touches for Henry: "This has to be all planned. You don't come out here and just not run the guy."— Dave Matter (@Dave_Matter) January 1, 2016
Pinkel cuts off Phyllis to point out that Alabama's punt flipped the field. She does what she does.— Dave Matter (@Dave_Matter) January 1, 2016
Pinkel on Bama 1st down pass: "Are you kidding me?"— Dave Matter (@Dave_Matter) January 1, 2016
We've got our first Don James reference from Pinkel. He's having fun with this, doing a nice job.— Dave Matter (@Dave_Matter) January 1, 2016
Out of context Gary Pinkel quote of the night: "I always like the naked plays."— Gabe DeArmond (@GabeDeArmond) January 1, 2016
Gary Pinkel's slouch game is strong on the SEC Network. pic.twitter.com/XxA4akRrGw— David Morrison (@DavidCMorrison) January 1, 2016
Larry from Shelby calls in and says he's on his 20th beer. Pinkel chimes in, "Don't be driving, pal."— Dave Matter (@Dave_Matter) January 1, 2016
With three hours left, "Don't be driving, pal," is the quote of 2015.— Dave Matter (@Dave_Matter) January 1, 2016
Pinkel on Alabama compared to the rest of the country: "These are different people."— Dave Matter (@Dave_Matter) January 1, 2016
Pinkel with an anecdote, says Terry Saban told him Henry stood up in front of team, said he'd give back all his trophies to win nat'l title— Dave Matter (@Dave_Matter) January 1, 2016
Pinkel on Saban: In 30 seconds he's going to start worrying about next week.— Dave Matter (@Dave_Matter) January 1, 2016
Pinkel was loose, insightful, engaging. Never thought he'd get into TV post-coaching but I could see him getting more work on SEC Network— Dave Matter (@Dave_Matter) January 1, 2016
I think I know who Pinkel is picking to win the national title game.
HAPPY NEW YEAR.