Gordo: Pinkel will retire as Mizzou icon

Gordo: Pinkel will retire as Mizzou icon Live

Gary Pinkel will retire as a titanic figure in University of Missouri sports history.

He brought a long-suffering football program back to national prominence. He led the team into its bold new adventure in the Southeastern Conference. He defied the experts by leading the Tigers to consecutive SEC East titles.

On his watch, attendance soared. Revenues soared. Memorial Stadium expanded. Given all the failure that preceded him, his accomplishments were monumental.

No, the Tigers never met the ultimate challenge. They never won a national title on his watch. But Mizzou did taste No. 1, briefly, and multiple trips to conference championship games thrust the Tigers onto the national stage.

Sadly, he will depart coaching on a difficult note. The Tigers crumbled offensively in what became his final season. A lot went wrong, which added to the strain Pinkel felt from his medical treatments.

Pinkel will be a very, very tough act to follow. Here is how the Twitterverse reacted to news of his retirement:


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