With the latest Pinkel Hall of Fame induction, a look back at the final football victory.
Pinkel was at the center of one of the most emotional scenes in the last college football season, when one day after he made his health challenges and retirement plans public, he led the Tigers against BYU in a game at Arrowhead Stadium in Kansas City.
Mizzou claimed a 20-16 victory, which would turn out to be the final win in Pinkel’s coaching career.
"That was an awesome thing," Pinkel said. "My players are very special to me. I’ll always remember that."
The induction is set for January 31st in Springfield. Pinkel is also a member of both the Toledo and Kent State halls of fame.
The often-gruff coach said he won’t fight off any emotions that hit him during the induction ceremonies.
"The player part is the toughest part, because you’re so close to those kids," he said. "But we’ll see, and let it go the way it goes."
The low point was against the Crusaders. Before the game, two banks of floodlights refused to operate. The Bruins’ offense, similarly, failed to ignite. Ofodile, then the offensive coordinator, rang up Odom. His offense gained a paltry 12 yards rushing. He wanted to make wholesale changes.
Long before the spread offense was chic locally — Missouri didn’t run the spread until 2005 — Ofodile told Odom he wanted to run empty backfields with four and five wide receivers almost exclusively.
"I was expecting him to hang up on me," Ofodile said, "or say, ‘That’s crazy, we aren’t doing that,’ talk me out of it, whatever."
Instead, Odom went along with the idea, entrusting the fate of his offense to the offensive coordinator. He moved tailback Van Alexander to offensive tackle, giving receiver Curt Bradley an even bigger role and trusting the arm of quarterback Chase Patton.
A week after the Helias game, in the first round of districts, Rock Bridge defeated Jefferson City for the first time in program history and gave the Jays their first homecoming loss in five decades. In the second round of districts, the Bruins toppled rival Hickman. After breaking an eight-year playoff drought, Rock Bridge advanced to the state semifinals and ended the 2002 season 8-4, its best record since 1993.
"There’s people in this building that still talk about him, how he treated them, what his everyday working attitude was," Ofodile said. ... "He’s a guy that just wanted to have success and wanted to win. He did a really masterful job not just with me, but with everybody, utilizing all of our talents and getting the most out of the program.
From Matter's chat, his take on Odom's recruiting style:
A couple things: They'll make a great investment in Texas. That was already starting to happen in Pinkel's final year, but Odom knows East Texas well and he knows it's an area the program can't abandon. You might see his staff get more aggressive with early offers for in-state players. Pinkel was sometimes cautious with local prospects. The thinking was, if they don't turn out to be be as good you thought, it's bad form to pull an offer from an in-state kid. You can get away with that if the kid's from Texas or Georgia but not in the backyard. I think Odom's staff will have quicker intel on the local scene and won't hesitate to offer a Missouri player if they like what they see early.
Kentrell's awards keep coming in
Linebacker Kentrell Brothers will vie for some All-American honors. There are five teams that are used to determine consensus and unanimous All-American status. If you make first-team status on three of those teams you earn consensus honors.
Brothers was named First Team All-America by both Sports Illustrated andCBSSports.com and landed second team honors from the Walter Camp Foundation.
Brothers is the first Mizzou LB ever to be honored as a first-team All-American by any publication and just the second Mizzou LB ever to earn any All-America distinction, joining Sean Weatherspoon who was a third team honoree by the Associated Press in 2008.
And the resume:
Brothers put together one of the most prolific seasons in MU history in 2015, and was named a first-team All-SEC performer for his efforts. The tackling machine ended the season with 152 total tackles, which leads the nation (next-most is 140), while his 12.7 tackles per game mark is also tops in the country. He is also second in the nation in 2015 with three blocked kicks on the year. The 152 tackles ranks as the 4th-most in Mizzou season history, and gave him 358 for his career, which puts him 8th all-time on the MU career chart. He became the first Tiger in the Gary Pinkel era with seven consecutive games of 10+ tackles to close the season. He broke the 15 tackle mark four times in 2015 and added 12.0 tackles for loss, two interceptions and was second in the nation with three blocked kicks.
A freshman trio gets in on the awards season
2015 All Freshman SEC Team: featuring Beckner, Brady, and Fatony.
The good part
WBB has a little fun with dodgeball
Now it's players vs staff. Players retreated when Pingeton went on the offensive pic.twitter.com/ETFrlgXXZf— Blake Toppmeyer (@btoppmeyer) December 9, 2015
If you were wondering, the players won.
They will travel to Colorado for Saturday's game. The possibly bad news is that it's only on the Pac-12 network. The good news though, if you do have that, you can also check out the men's team at Arizona the following day.
Other Sports Notes
"My excitement is through the roof," Baumgartner proclaimed. "I can't wait to experience all the traveling while also having the opportunity to compete against the most talented players in the country. I expect us to have a lot of success. Our work ethic and determiniation could potentially take us a long way in 2016."
Mizzou is ranked first overall and has three first-place rankings in the individual weight classes.
ICYMI: Apparently there's a seaweed that tastes like bacon.