Chat Mizzou sports with Dave Matter at 11 a.m. Thursday

Chat Mizzou sports with Dave Matter at 11 a.m. Thursday

Bring your Tigers football, basketball and recruiting questions, and talk to Mizzou beat writer Dave Matter in a live chat at 11 a.m. Thursday.

    Hi Dave, I like to track player snap counts as a way of tracking depth at each position. Do you plan to publish season total snap counts for football this year, similar to your game by game reports? If not is there a source where I can find these? Thanks.
    Yes, I will have my end-of-the season review published in Monday's paper with those snap counts and grades posted on the web site also. I subscribe to a scouting service for those statistics.
    What can be done to resurrect the bowl games? Last night's Orange Bowl wasn't competitive because of Florida opt outs. I understand the reasoning, but makes for a bad match-up. How about expanding the playoffs and dropping some bowls? I doubt the heavy dose of opt outs would occur in playoff teams?
    Easy. Expand the playoffs and you'll see fewer opt outs. If players believe they have a legitimate chance at winning the championship they'll be less included to start training for the NFL draft. Otherwise, you're not going to convince players to risk their health and their futures on something called the Duke's Mayo Bowl - and I don't blame them one bit for sitting out.
    Then why did Drinkwitz, unlike coaches at Iowa and St. Louis U., send his players home for Christmas? To report only that he "doubled-down" on his decision doesn't explain it. Are Mizzou players that much more mentally fragile that the rest of college sports? Regarding the reporting that Mizzou was prohibited from gathering, has anyone checked that with the Boone County Health Dept.? Did Drinkwitz have more players available for Iowa than for MSU? It's pretty obvious to anyone outside of Zou Nation that Drinkwitz did not want a losing season, which he would have gotten had he played Iowa.
    Well, SLU didn't allow its players to leave campus for the holidays - and SLU now has to shut down team activities because of COVID cases. So, how did that strategy work? Mizzou basketball allowed players to travel home for the holidays and allowed family to visit them in Columbia if possible and they didn't have any COVID cases. I'm not going to chastise the decisions these coaches make. They know their teams better than any of us do. I've talked to parents of football players. I've talked to other coaches around the country. They're all dealing with the same challenges. It's not about being "mentally fragile." It's about being in a bubble on campus from July to December - a 21-week season to play 10 games. It's been an absolute grind, mentally and physically. They test these kids for COVID three times a week. Drinkwitz didn't send anyone home who tested positive or was contact traced to any positive cases. 
    The Boone County Health Department isn't going to confirm if specific cases in the county come from Mizzou football players. The system doesn't work like that. Drinkwitz has been extraordinarily transparent with COVID for the last nine months - far more so than any of any of his peers in the SEC. I trust my sources on this one and reported the story as such.
    Mizzou had one COVID case before making the trip to Starkville and around a dozen after the trip to Starkville. 
    Also, don't forget, as I was reminded by a Mizzou adminsitrator this week: Mizzou chose to play Iowa in the Music City Bowl. This was the matchup Drinkwitz wanted. 
    Who has the better mullet Case Cook or Mike Gundy?
    Cook wins by default because Gundy trimmed his hair and it no longer qualifies as a mullet.
    What happens 1st if Bazelak remains QB1...? Macon transfers or Macon takes a RS? Also Brady Cook throws a nice deep ball.. Whats Cook's intent? You dont have to remind me that this is a good problem to have. I get that.. Thanks Davey
    You answered your own question. It's a good problem to have. I say this every week on this chat. College quarterbacks do one of two things: They start or they transfer. Backup QBs don't go through senior day ceremonies. They go somewhere else before their eligibility expires. Coaches know that when they recruit. Mizzou has offers out to a bunch of 2022 quarterbacks. They want a good one for that class. They want a good one for every class, knowing full well that one or more will transfer. 
    If Bazelak remains QB1 for the rest of his career and starts until his eligibility expires after the 2024 season, then either Macon waits his turn for 2025, changes positions or transfers. Same for Cook. It's as simple as that. 
    Gators looked awful and uninspired last night. I also just heard they are loosing a ton almost rebuild so the window is opening for Drink and company. Is Georgia returning enough to rule the roost?
    Georgia signs a top 10 class every year, usually a top five class. Until the results prove otherwise, UGA will have the best talent in the league. Florida is a step behind but loses more offensive firepower this year. The gap is still wide between those programs and the rest of the division.
    I don’t plan on watching any of the CFP mostly because I have little to no interest in seeing what seems like the same 3-4 teams for the about the 100th time. Wondering how many others feel the same way? Do ratings take a hit tomorrow?

    CFB is the only sport where I lose interest going from reg to postseason. If I’m channel flipping and stumble upon “Random Sponsor Bowl”, I keep flipping whereas ANY March Madness game will grab my attention. Every CBB Div 1 team has a legitimate chance of wining a title; can’t say the same about CFB.

    Are the powers that be that dense? Do they not realize the $$ 2-3 weekends of CFB playoff bowls would bring in?
    Like many, I wish they'd expand the field to eight or 12. You can't fault the elite programs for continuing to be elite. You can pencil in Alabama, Clemson and Ohio State for the playoff every August and probably be accurate four months later. That's not their fault. But it makes all the sense in the world to add some intrigue by adding more teams to the table. At some point the other conference commissioners are going to realize how much they're costing themselves by refusing to budge on the four-team model. There are 65 teams from the Power Five conferences, including Notre Dame. With Bama, Clemson and Ohio State in the mix every year, that means you've got 62 programs competing for the other one spot - and the other five conferences with zero shot at crashing the four-team playoff.
  • I didn’t expect MBB to beat UT, last night, but I expected a competitive game. We were competitive for between 4 & 8 minutes, it seems to me. Here are my concerns with a team that has so many veterans and is in the 4th year of a coach’s system:

    1) Overall poor shot selection (too often).

    2) Poor shooting, overall (see item 1).

    3) In a key game, the best shooter (Mark Smith) takes only 2 shots. It seems both Kobe Brown and Mitchell Smith take more 3s than Mark — he should be taking more than them, combined.

    4) Too many turnovers.

    5) Allow too many opponent offensive rebounds for our size and talent.

    I like this team and Counzo, but those items are frustrating — and I realize good teams like UT can force you into some of this, but still ... let me know where ai’m wrong.
    I think you hit on all the issues from last night. Martin would probably agree with each one. Last night was a step back. No other way to put it. Now, as he also said last night, the good thing about league play is you can't sit around and sulk. In 48 hours they play a really good Arkansas team that's going to require a lot of prep work because of all the new pieces in Musselman's rotation.
    Hey Dave: So, I think in a couple of years, Mizzou is going to have a real decision about what their values are re: Cuonzo Martin. Personally, I like that in cesspool that is college sports, Mizzou has a guy that has integrity, that sees basketball as a way to provide access to an education and opportunities to improve one's station in life. That said, I believe CM has a ceiling as a coach, and it's primarily because he has never been great a developing a half-court offense that helps non-stars, or non-dynamic players. You mentioned the need for ball movement--well, it's tough to move the ball if the other team is able to stay in front of your ball-handlers and deny the passing lanes. You need player movement and screening action. I don't see Mizzou do that much--they rely so much on ball penetration and screen-and-roll. Against good defensive teams, they get bogged down.

    Cuonzo's never going to land top-tier talent (the Porter situation was a fluke) because he's not going to roll in the mud to get them (which I admire), so unless he gets better on the offensive side of the ball, I see a lot of 21-12 type seasons, which has pretty much been CM's career. Fans won't love that, but I wonder about administration. I know I'm doing a lot of speculating, or asking you to do it, but do you think the powers-that-be will be okay if Mizzou becomes what CM's career suggests--20-24 wins, second tier in the conference, sporadic tourney bids, clean program?
    All fair points. He's not going to change the way he runs his program or the way he recruits. He won't sacrifice his standards to recruit someone he probably won't enjoy coaching anyway. So, he'll either have to start finding more skilled players the way he wants to recruit or do more to develop the talent he has on the roster.
    Hi Dave. I hope you had a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year! Since the SEC was able to play a full schedule going conference only, do you think there would be momentum for a conference plus one schedule going forward with a bye week per month during September through November? Second question do you think next year is enough time to organize a CFP football association that expands the playoffs and tells the NCAA to get lost? Thanks!
    I'm not sure I'd expect an expanded playoff in time for next year. If it happens, you're going to need some conference commissioners to start making moves now - and when they're put on the record they're reluctant to rock the boat on this topic.
    You're asking about moving to an 11-game schedule with 10 league games and one nonconference game? Not a bad idea. I don't think you'll ever get enough coaches and ADs to agree with that - and eventually fans at places like Ole Miss, Kentucky, Missouri, Arkansas and South Carolina won't like it either, because their team's realistic ceilings will be 6-5 or 7-4. And as much as fans hate the watered-down nonconference schedules they really don't like coaches who are barely above .500.
    Until you expand the playoff field, programs like Georgia and Florida won't agree to a 10-game league schedule either, because they've got a much  better chance of making the playoff at 11-1 with the current scheduling format than going 9-2 with your idea. 
    I'd like to see a system where the regular season games are more compelling, but schools are going to lean in the direction that suits their best interests - and as long as five or six teams begin every year believing they can make the playoff (Alabama, LSU, Georgia, Florida, Auburn, Texas A&M) I doubt they'd agree to more conference games. 
    Just saw the $10M xmas present for indoor practice facility. Thats great but I imagine that might not even cover the building materials. How much do you think the facility will cost?
    As I've reported, I've been told the project could cost upwards of $20 million, maybe more. But $10 million is certainly a strong start.
    Just because Drinkwitz returns phone calls and makes 'witty remarks' doesn't make him credible. A little skepticism, bitte. It's reporting.
  • I don't know what this means. Witty remarks? That's irrelevant to this topic. You think I've compromised my reporting on this story? Interesting.
    29%, 30%, 31.3%, 23.8%, 14.3%, 18.8%. That's the 3-point percentages Mizzou has shot per game from the game against Oregon to last night. Dave, this team canNOT shoot from 3, they have not been able to going back to all of last season and except for the season-opening win against Oral Roberts, haven't been able to all of this season. It's time to stop calling Dru & Mark Smith & Xavier Pinson the top "three-point shooting threats" on a team that has none. If I'm a basketball net and if it's painful for me to have a basketball go swishing through me when someone is shooting it from the 3-point arc, I'm breathing a sigh of relief every time I see either Mark Smith or Dru Smith or Pinson out there trying to hurt me.

    And maybe it's time for Cuonzo Martin and this coaching staff to look at this teams' inexplicable infuriating inability to hit the 3 as the definition of insanity, give them all redlights to shoot it as opposed to the green-light to shoot 3s at will, and drastically restructure their offense to focusing on shooting solely inside the arc to either get it to Tilmon or drive to the basket and try to draw fouls. But NO 3-point shooting attempts allowed anymore, or at least not 20-25 of them a game so they can make 3 of them and somehow be lucky enough to win games despite such abysmal numbers or be obliterated by Top 10 teams like they were last night. Better idea? How about limiting the team to 7 attempts a game and making 5 of them. Like UT did last night! 😡
    Thanks as always Dave for the great work you do covering Mizzou and a very Happy New Year to you!
    Does Macon push Connor for the qb job? Isaiah at Illinois seemed to go through some growing pains
    We'll see what happens when Macon gets here. It's in everyone's best interest to look at all the candidates and give the job to the best player. I don't think anyone on this team comes back for 2021 and doesn't have to earn his job. Mike Maietti and Case Cook along the offensive line are your starters next year. The other three jobs are wide open. Mizzou will rotate its receivers and tight ends, so identifying starters isn't as important there. Chism, Knox and Banister will play a lot. Badie is the top option at running back, but his touches were up and down this year. I'm not sure they envision him as a 25-carry back like Rountree was this year. And as well as Bazelak played at times this year, there's no sense in recruiting Macon and having him enroll early unless you take a close look at what he brings to the offense. Now, he'll have gone a full year since he last played a competitive game when he steps on campus next month. He'll be learning a college offense for the first time. It's unrealistic for him to show up and step right into the No. 1 job.
    Does Illinois now recruit better under the new coaching staff? Bielama seems to do more run heavy stuff which isn’t as appealing to some recruits
    For some reason everyone thinks Bielema is an offensive coach. He's not. He's a defensive guy. His offensive staff ran a run-heavy offense at Wisconsin because that's what he inherited when he replaced Barry Alvarez. But he threw the ball a lot when Russell Wilson joined the program. Bielema ran a run-heavy offense at Arkansas - until they started throwing more when Brandon Allen took over at QB and they started to recruit some decent college receivers. 
    So, he's not going to run the triple option at Illinois. He's talked about having a physical, ball-control offense - but having any kind of offensive identity is an upgrade over whatever it was they were doing at Illinois under Lovie Smith. As far as recruiting, it can't get worse. Smith started to lean heavily on transfers and all but gave up on recruiting around the state of Illinois. 
    Can you tell us what your prediction would have been for the music bowl game?
  • Probably Iowa by about 10. Their style didn't match up well with Mizzou's weaknesses.
  • The bball game last night showed how better talent and higher rated recruits leads to better results on the court. I wish CM had some better success in recruiting.
  • Will they make the 10 million dollar anonymous donor known at some point ?
  • No, it doesn't work like that. I have a hunch who it is, and it's someone who is a regular donor to the athletics department but doesn't want the attention. I can tell you this much: It's not Stan Kroenke or Bill Laurie.
  • The turnovers yesterday were concerning. Does the fast pace do that or just sloppiness
    It didn't appear to have anything to do with pace last night. It was careless ball handling and some offensive fouls.
    What’s the matter family doing for NYE?
    The Matter family is in quarantine, so we'll have a big dinner at home and watch a movie or two.
    How do we replace Bolton or rountree? Do we have a losing record next year? I’m concerned since we won a lot of the games that were borderline.
Powered by Platform for Live Reporting, Events, and Social Engagement