Join Mizzou beat writer Dave Matter for his live chat at 11 a.m. Thursday

Join Mizzou beat writer Dave Matter for his live chat at 11 a.m. Thursday

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

    There were backups on the field for the final TD pass. 
    On the three fourth-quarter TDs, Drinkwitz explained the breakdowns this week.
    One of them was a Cover 3 zone coverage. One of the defensive backs played the tight end like it was a man coverage and the other tight end got loose behind the zone.
    On the next one, it was fourth down. Mizzou called a Cover 2, but safety on the far side of the field bit down on an crossing route and left the deep zone wide open. 
    And the last one was just a matter of two missed tackles, I believe by Stacy Brown and DJ Jackson, two reserves who rarely see the field.
    So, two busted zones and some missed tackles. 
    Clearly Mizzou is not competing for anything much this season (other than maybe Shreveport). Why do you think the Freshman aren't getting any time at all on the field to prepare for the future? (Travion Ford, Tyler Macon, etc.)
    Ford is still recovering from Achilles' surgery. Wilks said a few weeks ago he's just not ready to play a lot yet because of the injury.
    I can see why maybe you'd want to see a different QB in the fourth quarter of the last two games, but I also understand Drinkwitz wanting his starting QB to get game reps over a backup who's not in the plans this year. Macon needs more than game reps to prepare him for this level. I just don't think he's accurate enough to be a starter at this level, certainly not as a freshman.
    Two questions. What was the attendance last Saturday and what are the terms to buy out Wilks?
    Attendance was 46,985
    On Wilks' buyout, it all depends on when he'd be let go, theoretically of course. If he's terminated without cause after the season, he's owed his full 2021 salary ($800K) plus his full 2022 salary ($1M), but MU doesn't owe him any of his three $200K continuity clauses, which kick in if he's on staff next Feb. 15, July 1 and Dec. 1. 
    So, basically, to fire him now or right after this season, it would cost MU $1.8M, though he will have already earned the $800K for this season. If you wait until after Feb. 15, it's $2M. 
  • Hey Dave appreciate the chat opportunity every week. As you look at the recruiting class coming in next year. Will they be able to provide the much needed depth for Coach ED or will it be another year?
    I don't see this team winning the SEC East or coming close in 2022 just based on incoming recruits. They'll add some talent for sure. But also losing, most likely, Tyler Badie, Chism, Parker, a couple O-linemen and several D-linemen. The transfer portal will be pivotal. If Mizzou can do what Kentucky did last offseason - add impact Power 5 transfers who were starters instead of Group of 5 starters - then you ease the growing pains.
  • I watched the end of the Alabama-TXAM game last Saturday in which A&M fans stormed the field at the conclusion. The announcer said the Aggies would be fined $250,000. You said $100,000. Whatever the fine is, it is one of the most exciting ends to a football game when the underdog beats the number one team on their home field. The only time I can remember that happening at Faurot Field is in 2010 when MU upser number one Oklahoma. Hopefully Eli can work some magic in the near future to give MU fans a reason to storm field again.
    In 2015, the SEC updated its policy with new fine figures. A school is fined $50K for the first offense (post 2015), $100K for the second offense and $250K for the third offense. This was No. 2 for A&M. It also happened in 2018 when A&M beat LSU in seven overtimes.
    Prior to 2015, the SEC policy was $5K for first offense, $25K for second offense and $50K for third offense.
    Mizzou fans stormed the field in 2013 (Texas A&M) and 2014 (Arkansas) when the Tigers clinched the SEC East both seasons.
    Will Bazelak be the QB next year? Is 2022 a rebuilding year?
    I've seen nothing to indicate that he's not the starter in 2022. I don't think Mizzou's rebuilding process ends before 2022.
    Should finally be some good weather and cooler Fall temps Saturday. Finally college football .weather.
    Yeah, it was a little toasty last Saturday.
  • Hi Dave,
    Are defenses less likely to go gimmicky to cover for a lack of talent, like offenses or are gimmicky defenses not talked about as much. It feels like Mizzou should try to find a gimmick to covering up for tackling talent.

    Thanks for answering my question.
    I don't know how you scheme your way out of not being able to tackle.
    Any talk of replacing the sound system at Faurot Field?
    It is awful and coupled with the music that very few fans can related to makes for a less than stellar experience.
    The music blares over the stadium announcer much of the time so much so that fans can't hear who carried the ball, make the tackle, etc.
    Also, EVERY time out leads to someone on the field receiving some award, honor, etc.
    I've been to many away games and all other stadiums are much better with music and actual
    game experience. A better mix of music from a better sound system is the norm at visiting stadiums.
    Don't know who thinks every time out, dead ball, has to be filled with obnoxious booming music or someone on the field.
    I don't know if that's in the plans. I'm just a football writer. I'd take your complaints to the AD. She likes surveys. She's listening to a lot of fan feedback so they can address concerns for the future.
    Good morning Dave--hope all is well your way. My questions are this:
    With MU inevitably struggling with its still horrendous defense in the 2nd half last week and UNT making something of a threatening comeback, why didn't Drink put Badie back in the game?
    Also, why doesn't he make Dawson Downing the official backup RB to Badie? Nothing against the other two main RB backups, but Downing seems to make a lot more happen when he's out there compared to them. Not to mention he's a seasoned veteran compared to those guys.
    Well, you sort of answered your first question with your second question. What more could Badie have done that Downing didn't do on the 60-yard touchdown run? I think it's smart to rest Badie when you can. It was 34-14 when Badie came out of the game ... and soon 41-14 after the Wingo TD. Mizzou was never in real trouble of losing that game, so I don't have a problem giving the other backs a chance to play knowing that you only have SEC teams left on the schedule. 
    As for Downing's snaps, I think he's perfectly suited for the role he has. There's value in giving the three younger backs playing time. Downing and Badie are gone after this year. If those are the only two guys you play this year, then you open 2022 with hardly any game experience among the rest.  
    Dave, I’ve been listening to the Mizzou radio broadcast while turning down the sound on the telecast this year. One thing I’ve heard Howard Richards repeat again and again and again is the inability or the unwillingness of our D ends or whoever is responsible for containment on the edges to do their job. This is a basic defensive fundamental. What do you think is the problem? Is it poor coaching, a lack of talent, or a combination of things? Same with tackling. I don’t see much good form tackling at any level of college football.
    Without knowing what those guys are taught to do on every play, I can't say exactly who's to blame. But Drinkwitz clearly believed whatever message Franklin was delivering wasn't connecting with the linemen. It's not like Mizzou has a bunch of rookies at D-end. It's Jeffcoat, McGuire, Turner, Hansford and Walker. Walker is the only guy who's in his second year. The rest are three- ,four- and five-year players.
    It has been noted and reported that X Pinson and the coaching staff were butting heads last season. What was it specifically? His attitude, commitment to defense, being aloof? What kind of impact did that relationship have on the team chemistry going down the stretch?
  • He didn't show commitment to playing defense. Several games he wouldn't engage in the game plan offensively and resisted attacking the paint like the coaches wanted him to do. Bad body language. Internally, there were issues, nothing specific I can report here ... but, over the course of the season I have plenty of off-record conversations and it was apparent things weren't going well. There was a serious buy-in issue.
  • Not Mizzou related, but I am curious what your thoughts are on the "Hacking" scandal and more specifically the Governor's comments in relation to it.
    Hmmm. I have a lot of opinions, but let's just say the company's attorneys have asked that we not share those publicly. 
    I'm not surprised by the reaction in Jefferson City to a reporter trying to do the administration a solid. 
    Anything you’ve heard about LB Chuck Hicks? It seems we’ll need at least a few more d lineman and LB’s from the transfer portal to have a competitive run defense next year, but is there an expectation he’d be an impact player or just depth?
    If he sees the field at linebacker this year, I think that's an indictment on recruiting and player development for this staff. They only play two linebackers at at time. If an 11th-hour transfer from the Mountain West Conferences is better than the players MU has recruited and coached to play the position, then this defense has bigger issues than 62-24 indicated. 
    Drinkwitz essentially said he'll play on special teams this year. 
    You quote an incredible array of statistics from Pro Football Focus. How do they accumulate all this data? Do they have a staff of people view film of every college game reviewing every single play? I'm in the stands and can't often figure out who's on the field for a single play. How can they spot 22 people simultaneously for 200 plays a game for every team? Seems almost impossible?
    The company has a staff of analysts - hundreds of people - who review game film of every FBS and NFL game. It's a huge company. I don't always put a lot of stock in the individual grades, but they're a snapshot of how a player, a unit and a team are all playing from week to week, season to season.
    I believe Mizzou football finished the 2007 season (or began the 2008 season) ranked #4 in the country. In your opinion (and I realize this is total conjecture), do you think Coach Drinkwitz is the right head coach to get them back there? Why or why not?
    I just haven't seen enough to say yes or no to that question. When the 2007 season kicked off, I don't think I could have reasonably said Gary Pinkel was capable of building a top-five team. Here's what Drinkwitz has to do to put Mizzou in that position, in no particular order ...
    * Recruit/develop an elite quarterback. Great teams don't have average guys at that position. Is that Bazelak? Maybe, but he's not there yet. He's a top 25 QB nationally. 
    * Recruit/develop dynamic playmakers at running back and receiver. The best teams have great skill at those positions.
    * Recruit/develop big, deep and talented lines on both sides of the ball. It's hard to win at a national level without NFL prospects on the line of scrimmage.
    * Recrut/develop impact defensive players who can change games with playmaking ability. 
    Defensive scheme doesn't matter. Just have a system that gets the most out of your talent. 
    Dave, I always tell my fellow MU diehard friends that, in addition to the excellent informative articles you write throughout the week in your coverage of all things Mizzou, your weekly chats are even more must-reads because of all the info and very often even deeper insight into the program than you are able to provide in your articles.
    Unfortunately, even though I'm far from the busiest guy on the planet, I somehow manage to not be able to set aside about an hour to listen to your weekly podcasts w Ben Fred. Can you give me some sort of idea of how much more I'm missing on those podcasts compared to your chats and if I absolutely should make that mandatory listening each week in addition to participating in the weekly chats?
  • You're missing our witty banter and hopefully entertaining guests. Don't worry, we're not breaking news on the podcasts or saving any exclusive content that wouldn't show up in print/online coverage. But I enjoy doing the podcasts. I think a lot of fans enjoy them, too. They're running about 50-55 minutes here lately. I hope they're worth everyone's time.
    Speaking of, here's this week's podcast if you haven't listened yet. Ben and I talk about last week's game, this week's game and then I visit with former Mizzou OC Dave Christensen. We cover a wide range of topics.

    Eye on the Tigers: Can Mizzou lure Texas A&M into a letdown?

    The Post-Dispatch’s Dave Matter and Ben Frederickson review Mizzou’s homecoming victory over North Texas and the defense’s modest progress with a few new starters. Then they look ahead to Saturday’s showdown with No. 21 Texas A&M, fresh off its stunning takedown of Alabama. Dave also visits with former Mizzou offensive coordinator and one-time Texas A&M assistant Dave Christensen to discuss the state of the college game while traveling down Mizzou memory lane.

    Do you think that if given the opportunity, the SEC would trade MU for, say, West Virginia-more of a true "Southeast" region team than MU with a much more passionate fanbase than MU's?
    Even so, one of my favorite things to point out to South Carolina fans, who, in my dealings with SEC fans from other schools, seem to hate Mizzou more than any other SEC school and are always the loudest in leading the "You don't belong in the SEC!" declarations against us, is that Missouri geographically borders more SEC states than they do.
    Sometimes that actually works in shutting them up. 😆
    Any idea how Mizzou at least does in the TV ratings for the SEC? With us having the KC and STL market, and apparently nothing being more important than the almighty dollars that TV generates for the conference, maybe the SEC is at least pleased with us in that regard?
    I don't have full TV ratings at my fingertips. 
    This much I can tell you: The Boston College game was the 22nd-most watched college game that weekend with 404,000 viewers. No. 1 that weekend was Notre Dame-Wisconsin with 5.4 million viewers. 
    The Alabama-Texas A&M game was the most-watched this past weekend, more than 8 million viewers.
    Dave - I enjoyed your conversation with Dave Christensen. It's great hearing from the past coaches that were at Mizzou during the GP era. You talked to him about developing culture in a new program. Although it may be too soon to discuss, what culture do you see Drinkwitz trying to create in his program to help promote wining? Thank You
    I really don't know how to describe a team's particular culture because it's such a catch-all, nebulous phrase. Most coaches all build theirs around the same general concepts: competition, discipline, effort, teamwork, etc. It's the execution of building the culture that's more important than the actual coach-speak buzzwords they use to label their culture.
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