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.

    Happy March Madness, which takes on a whole new meaning when you cover the Mizzou athletics department. Lots to discuss today. Just wanted to start with a number: 8 in 8.
    Since April 2014, Missouri has now launched eight searches for a new athletics director, football coach or men's basketball coach. That's exactly one major athletics hire per year since Kim Anderson was hired to replace Frank Haith. 
    We can talk about apathy and instability when it comes to Missouri hoops, but the turnover and lack of stability is more systemic when it comes to the department. 
    Of those eight searches, four were to replace people who were fired: Kim Anderson, Barry Odom, Cuonzo Martin and Jim Sterk.
    Two were to replace people who left on their own: Frank Haith and Mack Rhoades.
    Two were to replace people who stepped away/retired: Gary Pinkel and Mike Alden
    As you've probably seen by now four star basketball signee Aidan Shaw has received his release from his letter of intent. He told me this morning via social media direct messages that he will still consider Mizzou once a head coach is hired.
    "As long as the support is there with coach, team, and fans I’m open," he told the Post-Dispatch. "I’m going to go where I’m wanted."
    More I read it looks like the Seton hall coach will get the Mizzou job offer. I think English could get shaw, brown, Brazile to stay, I am afraid they will all leave. As far as the roster Brookshire is smart to leave he isn't an sec point guard. Can't imagine Wilmore having any role with mizzou. Keita with his knee issues I don't see him helping in the future. Not sure but maybe with a great point guard and a decent big the 4 players that came through the portal might serve a role. Kaleb brown could serve a support role. The recruit from East st. Louis needs to re open his recruitment if he is a factor next year we are not getting better. We have to move forward with a roster that has a couple guys that can shoot, point guard that can get others a shot and can handle the ball and make great decisions. We have to have a couple bigs that put pressure on the defense. Personally the new coach needs to do like Iowa state change the roster.
    I don't know that Mizzou is serious about Seton Hall's Kevin Willard, but I don't believe he's too interested in this job. Solid coach. He's gotten that program far more competitive in the last five years. But he doesn't recruit at a high level and his teams play more of a grind-it-out defensive style. I'm not sure that's a great fit for what this school needs or wants right now.
    Whoever the new coach is, he's going to have to raid the portal for instant impact players or I don't think this team will be much better next year - and could be worse.
    Good morning Dave,
    Unfortunately, the Missouri basketball program attractiveness is no longer the gem it was now over a decade ago. There are eight to 10 other schools looking beside MU. To that end us Tiger fans need to accept that a higher risk pick may be the direction we need to go. These coaches have a winning history and may offer the gamble our program needs. Mark Turgeon, Avery Johnson, Travis Steele, and yes Kim English.
    I'll touch on the one at a time:
    A couple months ago I figured Travis Steele could be an appealing option, but he was just fired at Xavier because his program has fallen behind in the Big East. I don't think you fire Cuonzo to hire a guy who was six games under .500 in the Big East and finished sixth, seventh and eighth the last three years.
    Mark Turgeon is a Jayhawk through and through. You can't sell that here. 
    Avery Johnson recruited pretty well at Alabama but couldn't win. 
    Kim English, I believe, will get a strong look. He had a tough first year as a head coach, but he's got an impressive upside. He'll recruit at a high level. He'll excite the fan base and work tirelessly to build a winning program. There's a lot of risk hiring a 33-year-old whose only year as a HC was a struggle. But also just as much upside if not more than any of the mid-major names out there.
    I like Coach Pingeton and like what she has brought to the program, but the late season swoon has me worried. Would the university want to do two coaching searches at the same time? I get a feeling Coach Pingeton may be coaching for her job in the WNIT.
    Her job status won't hinge on the WNIT. She's safe, I believe. A department in debt won't want to pay another buyout for a program that doesn't generate a profit. The team doubled its win total from each of the last two years. Yes, they fell apart late, but I don't see that enough to consider a change, especially not with a more important search already started
    People can say all they want about who the next men’s basketball coach should be. The truth is before looking for a new coach the powers that be need to determine what kind of program they want? If we are looking for a coach to make us good and make a run at the NCAA Tournament three out of every five years and maybe a run at the top of the SEC one of those years, hire a young, up-and-comer coach. If we want to get back to being a top contender in the SEC year after year like we were in the Big 8/12 at one time we will need a coach to recruit against the Calipari’s, Barnes’ and Pearl’s. Young coaches from mid-majors just cannot do that. We need someone that has gone toe-to-toe with the big boys. We are Mizzou and have a lot of talent in each side of the state as well as neighboring states and need to get someone who can seal the deal with recruits and not just make their final list.
    Perhaps that's true but after the last decade what indicates this program can go out and hire an established winner at the high-major level? That requires a lot more money than I imagine they're willing to spend right now. mid-major coaches can absolutely develop into winners in the SEC. Arkansas' coach came from Nevada. Nate Oats came from Buffalo.
    Good morning, Mr. Matter. Thank you for the chat and your time. I was sorry to see Coach Martin get fired. I have no doubt he is an honorable man. I don't think that his assistants have gotten enough of the blame for Mizzou's struggles. The assistants would be the ones charged with helping players develop, with scouting and recommending recruits and players in the transfer portal. Coach Martin didn't cause all of the problems by himself. Was Martin too loyal to his assistants?
    Also, I'd like to ask why Pingeton isn't held to the same standards as Martin? Look at her record, and it's worse than Martin's. Pingeton won 18 games total over a two-year stretch! She has a less than .500 record in SEC, and her teams were even worse when Mizzou was in the Big 12. Granted, Pingeton took Missouri to the NCAA Tournament three years in a row, but she's never won more than one game in a NCAA Tournament. Yet, she's still around, and doesn't appear to be in any danger of losing her job.
    I touched on Pingeton earlier. Missouri generally doesn't buy out coaches from non-revenue sports. I suspect she's safe. That's not to say anyone is satisfied with where the program is, but the team went from nine wins, nine wins to 18 wins. I'd say she better build on this year's progress next season when Blackwell and Frank are seniors, assuming Blackwell is back.
    Dave, Drinkwitz knows a disappointing 2021 makes progress in 2022 more critical. This makes a QB transfer an important pursuit. Recruiting and attendance could stall this season if the W-L record looks like 2021, and as you’ve shown the schedule makes a .500 or better outcome difficult. Cook or Macon may be the answer. But too much is at stake too not pursue an accomplishment QB. An early effect of signing JT Daniels could be a boost in pre-season ticket sales, and any boost is important. Good for Drinkwitz in being aggressive.
    I'm not sure he's recruiting Daniels to sell tickets in as much he's not satisfied with the QBs on the roster.
    MBB: Do you know if there was any kind of offer made to Cuonzo where he could stay, but he would need to replace some of his staff to do so? Also, any chance you know Jon Sundvold's opinion on the firing? Thank you.
    I don't want to speak for Jon. I talk to him regularly and I have a sense for how he feels about things. But that's not for me to share publicly. He's not involved in this search. 
    As I reported a few weeks ago, there were some very prominent boosters who have given A LOT of money to the basketball program who favored keeping Martin but wanted to see some staff changes. I don't believe he was given any kind of ultimatum - fire the staff or you're fired - but I have learned that administrators talked to him last year about possibly making staff changes and Martin did not believe that needed to happen. So, I doubt he was willing to make that change this time around. 
    If money was not an issue. and you could select the new men's MU basketball coach, who would you select? Also, if Mizzou can't get a top level experienced head coach, what's your opinion on Tang at Baylor, who's been an assistant there for 19 years, and seems to be an excellent recruiter, Would Tang be a better fit than English at Mizzou? Thanks for the chat.
  • If money were no issue and we're playing fantasy hire, I'd hire Steve Kerr. If not Kerr, then Scott Drew or Brad Underwood or Eric Musselman. 
    Those choices aren't realistic.  
    If you're talking about more realistic college options, I'd explore Chris Holtmann at Ohio State. Offer him $4 million over five years with a strong incentive package and see if a fresh start with that kind of security is more appealing than his situation at Ohio State.
    As for Tang, he knows how a championship program at the highest level looks, sounds, smells and feels. But he's not the guy in charge. Knowing how the machine operates and being able to operate the machine on your own are two completely different challenges. I'm intrigued by Tang but not convinced. You have to ask why he's been content as an assistant for 19 years? I know he's interviewed for other head coaching jobs. 
  • Aidan Shaw and Mizzou BBall... Should we be worried that the worst is yet to come?
    I'm not sure what that means. It's never good to lose a highly touted recruit. Like I reported, he'll still consider Mizzou.
    And as I've written over the past week, Mizzou's best players are being contacted by other teams. That's the risk of firing your head coach. Mizzou knew the risks.
    What’s your overall take on JT Daniels? He seems like an upgrade over what we’ve got with a big arm and some experience, but maybe not the Heisman candidate he was once thought to be. Can he stay healthy and get the ball to Burden and company?
    He's got an arm. There's no doubt. He's not a dual threat by any means. He's a pocket passer without the running ability that you'd get from Cook or Macon. But he's a very skilled passer. Drinkwitz wouldn't be pursuing him so heavily if he didn't see a serious need there. Health has to be a concern. He was never OK last year and Georgia seemed reluctant to play him when he wasn't 100 percent.
    Hi Dave,

    I got new name for the coach search, former Xavier and UConn assistant Luke Murray. He might not be able to coach, but at least he'll give people a reason to go to games this year if his dad, Bill Murray still comes to his games. Serious question though, do you think a school like Mizzou would ever consider hiring a top flight women's coach to run the men's team. Staley at South Carolina or Becky Harmon (former Spurs assistant) would appear to be just as good as a retread. If your just hoping to get back to Mike Anderson or Quinn Snyder days, might as well go bold and get positive national media attention.
    I think we'll eventually see a woman hired to coach a men's team, but ... and at the risk of turning this into a political discussion, I suspect it will happen in a state or region more progressive than Missouri or the Southeastern Conference's footprint.
    Is the kid from truman st. making good progress at running back?
    Back on March 8, I asked Drinkwitz if Cody Schrader has a chance to play. Here's his full answer: "Absolutely he's got a chance. He and Nate Peat are right next to each other night just as far as pushing each other, being on time, working hard in the weight room and learning the offense. He earned his number (20) in the scrimmage on Saturday. He's doing a lot of things the right way, has got great vision, toughness, hard runner. Better than average foot speed. So absolutely. Obviously T-Man (Tavorus Jones) is not here yet, but I feel confident we'll have a running back for next year."
  • Disappointing to see Shaw pull out before a new Coach is hired, but isn't really unexpected. With announced portal decisions and his withdrawal what is the current open scholarship count for the new coach to fill?
    It's a very fluid situation. Here's who is on the current roster and who is signed. 
    Kobe Brown
    Boogie Coleman
    Amari Davis
    Ronnie DeGray
    DaJuan Gordon
    Jordan Wilmore
    Trevon Brazile
    Yaya Keita
    Kaleb Brown
    Christian Jones (signed)
    That's 10 players, leaving room for three additions. Javon Pickett could opt to return, which would put them at 11 scholarships with room for two more, but considering how close Pickett and Martin were, I'd be surprised if he returns. 
    Thanks for the chat, Dave. A history lesson please as we wait to see what kind of coach MU hires. When Frank Haith bolted for Tulsa, how did the cloud of investigations and impending sanctions—both perception and reality—affect the hire of the next men’s basketball coach? And how did they affect Kim Anderson’s ability to win games?
    Kim was aware of the investigation and was prepared to absorb sanctions. I don't believe it heavily impacted Anderson's ability to win games. The school self-imposed a postseason ban, gave up two scholarships (not in the same class) and had some minor recruiting restrictions.
    Dave…good morning! Wondering your thoughts of Thad Matta as a candidate. Has a large proven record at Xavier and OSU. Lots have to depend on his health. I believe he would be a Rick Barnes kind of hire. Your thoughts…..
    Thad hasn't coached since 2017. The game has changed A LOT since then in terms of the transfer portal and NIL. Good coach, good record. There are health concerns. But the biggest concern would be his ability to adapt to the new landscape. I'd prefer a coach who doesn't have to learn on the fly.
    I appreciate Aiden's message but there is no way he stays. Has any recruit who opened up his recruitment ever gone back to the original team?
  • Yes, it's happened. At least a couple MU football players opened their recruitment after Odom was fired and then stuck with MU when Drinkwitz was hired.
  • I thought once a player signed he was locked into that team for a year?
    I read somewhere — and I’m pretty confident it was in this forum — that as a freshman, Brady Cook scored off the charts on some athleticism tests Mizzou did that was specific to quarterbacking. Does that rind a bell for you?
    I'm not sure about that. But he showed on the field last year he's a capable runner/scrambler and faster and more athletic than most probably realized.
    Dave, I don't have a question but I do have a comment. Whatever is done in regard to the Men's Basketball program at Mizzou, the overall strategy should contain the word "relevance". The program has been irrelevant for a while now, even when Cuonzo made the tournament, given the first round losses. What that means in regard to resources, I do not know but I do not think NCAA Men's Basketball, in general, has any regard for the program. At this point in time, MUBB just doesn't matter to enough people. Thanks.
    President Mun Choi would disagree. Just go back to what he said when he hired Reed-Francois. He set the standard and expectation much higher than "relevance," which is why he should be held accountable going forward for the moves she makes. 
    Here's Choi last August:

    “I’m going to throw down the gauntlet: We’re not going to go from good to great .Today, we’re going to go from good to becoming champions, the very best. And with the right leadership, the right vision and investments, we can get there.”

    “At the end of the year, there’s only one champion standing,” he later told a smaller group of reporters. “And that’s where we want to be. It may take us three, four, five years to get there. We can’t do it with a snap of a finger. It takes a sustained commitment.”

    Is J T Daniels Kelly Bryant II? Bryant came in with all kinds of hype which faded fast the deeper they got into the SEC schedule. Is Daniels a marked improvement over Cook and Mason? HCED has two competent QBs who haven’t had much of a chance to show their stuff. I assume they were recruited because somebody thought they could compete in the tough SEc, but it is hard to determine whether thay can if they never get a chance to compete.
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