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

    I enjoyed the podcast this week with you and Ben Fred, particularly the part about team identity. I'm curious about your take on what the team's identity will be. What's your best guess?
    I think it all comes down to the QB's play and how much rope Drinkwitz gives the QB to play with. He's talking about being more aggressive, cutting it loose with play-calling. It's easier to coach that way when you know you have a good defense. If you're scared of your own defense, then you might coach tight and conservative on offense. It all has to come together. I'm curious to see that process take shape.
    I'm going to play Captain Positive for a moment. I know that Mizzou is being met with heavy skepticism because the QB situation, but if they do end up getting what they need out of the position, the schedule is incredibly favorable. Only UGA stands out as a unwinnable. Every other SEC on the schedule this year either major questions (new coaches, new personnel at key positions) or might be better but not that much better. UT and Arkansas will say a lot, I think, about what direction Drink is headed with this program. If Mizzou craters against UT like they did last year, and if they are clearly outclass by Arkansas, then I will start to worry about where the program is headed. I have a lot of faith in Drink, but the defense still makes me nervous.
    Tennessee has blown out Mizzou two years in a row, so winning in Knoxville is going to be a challenge. That offense is really explosive. Mizzou either needs an extremely improved defense or an equally explosive offense to keep pace with the Vols.
    Arkansas is a step ahead of Mizzou in terms of overall program success through two years of a regime, but that game is in Columbia. 
    South Carolina, Kansas State, Florida and Auburn are winnable - but all on the road. This team hasn't exactly played well on the road under Drinkwitz. 
    Do you have any concerns Missouri will be subtracted from the Sec when the next round of expansion occurs? Rumors have Florida State, Clemson , Miami and other programs joining in the future.
    Is there an echo in here?
    I have no reason to believe the SEC wants to get rid of schools or would have the votes to get rid of a school it just brought in 10 years ago.
    In addition to Missouri and the suburbs connecting to the metro KC and STL areas where does ED and staff focus the most in recruiting ? Is the staff assigned specific regions or metro areas?
    They recruit nationally. In the 2021-23 classes, they've signed players or gotten commitments from Missouri, Illinois, Kansas, Texas, Tennessee, North Carolina, Indiana, California, Colorado, Louisiana, Georgia, Alabama and Washington.
    The coaches all have areas they recruit in the state of Missouri and then they recruit their position - and may lean in certain areas around the country where they have connections. Bush Hamdan recruits QBs and he has ties in the Seattle area - and landed Tacoma's Gabarri Johnson. 
    Does the ncaa take any fees or a percentage of players NIL deals? How heavy are the taxes on these deals as well?
    No, the NCAA doesn't take out any fees. They pay taxes on the income they report same as anyone else's reported income.
    It looks like a significant number of Odom recruits will be getting snaps on offense and defense this year. More than I would have thought considering how much grief BO took for his recruiting. Why haven't we seen more of Drink's stellar recruits make an impact?
    For one, somme of Drinkwitz's recruits are younger and not good enough yet to beat out established starters. 
    Here are some potential starters who signed/committed under Odom:
    QB: Cook (committed to Odom, signed under Drinkwitz)
    WR: Dove, Banister
    OL: Foster, Delgado, White (injured)
    DL: McGuire, Jeffcoat, Robinson
    LB: Bailey, Nicholson
    DB: Manuel, Carlies (committed to Odom, signed under Drinkwitz), Williams
    Now, potential starters who signed/committed under Drinkwitz:
    QB: Abraham, Macon, Horn
    RB: Peat, Young
    WR: Burden, Lovett, Cooper, Luper
    TE: Hoerstkamp, Stephens
    OL: Wood, Polgar, Tollison, Powell
    DL: Jernigan, George
    LB: Hopper
    DB: Rakestraw, Abrams-Draine, Carnell, Charleston
    So, it's a mix of both coaches.
    Dave: I don't know if my perception is accurate or not, but it seems like that so far, ED's biggest recruiting/transfer splashes have been on offense (beyond the obvious in Luther Burden). Is that accurate, or is he landing his fair share of quality defensive recruits/transfers as well?
    He's hit the portal much harder on defense. In the last two years alone: Akayleb Evans, Allie Green, Blaze Alldredge, Ty'Ron Hopper, Tyrone Hopper, Jayden Jernigan, Ian Matthews, Josh Landry, Dresden Norwood,  Joseph Charleston, Kristian Williams.
    Using Rivals.com's rankings, here are Mizzou's 2021-22 four-star high school recruits on defense: Travion Ford, Daylan Carnell, Ky Montgomery, Isaac Thompson, Marquis Gracial, Marcus Scott and DJ Wesolak.
    Here are the 2021-22 four-star offensive players: Luther Burden (five stars), Sam Horn, Tavorus Jones, Tyler Macon, Dominic Lovett.
    So, I count seven on defense and five on offense. 
    If Abraham doesn’t get the starting job or gets pushed out after a few games does he leave and forgo his last season?
    I doubt it. This is his last year of eligibility.
    Just recently discovered that the Bragging Rights game which was just recently announced to be played on December 22 in STL...is on the same day once again that Armed Forces Bowl is occurring! Yikes! Mizzou fans might have to scream a collective "Noooooooooooo!" on those 2 events coinciding on the same day again! 😬
    I doubt the Armed Forces Bowl would pick Missouri a second straight year.
    Do you think we look at this team and Drinkwitz's first two years a little different if they beat Kentucky, Boston College, and Army? Theyre a couple of things going their way from being 9-4. Would a record like that give Drink more credit when it comes to this year and eliminate some of the worries everyone has?
    Of course we'd look at the program differently if it won 27% more of its games the last two years. (I think my math is correct.)
    But you can turn that question around and mention all the close games they won. What if Josh Bledsoe doesn't knock down the pass against LSU? MU won three games by one possession in 2020. What if Mevis misses the field goal against Arkansas. Two of last year's wins were by a combined four points (South Carolina, Florida). 
    So, yes, Drinkwitz is a few bad plays away from being 14-9 ... and five good plays away from being 6-17. 
    Instead, he's 11-12, which is probably right were the law of averages says he should be.
    I will admit that I learned of "relegation" while watching Ted Lasson on Apple Plus. But it seems that could be something that would be interesting at some point, maybe a decade or two down the line, in college sports. Basically you have to have some success to play with the big boys.....I realize that TV contracts and the need for consistent inventory etc make this unlikely, but I would be curious as to your thoughts on this Super-hypothetical question of relegation being part of American sports.... Thoughts Dave?
    You'd have to completely change the way conference contracts work, conference revenues are split, conference schedules are planned. I think it would be interesting and add a layer of intrigue to every season. But do you have to do the same for every non-revenue sport as well. That's a lot of logistics that you'd have to change on the fly from year to year. Plus, there are academic factors to weigh there. The Big Ten is very protective of the shared research programs their schools participate in together - we're talking more than $10 billion on shared research - and how does that piece look differently if you're changing membership every year? Lots of pieces to untangle to completely shift the system like that.
    We've run out of time. Stay tuned for next week's chat schedule. It might depend on Mizzou's practice schedule/media access, all of which is TBA for local media at this point. Thanks for stopping by.
Powered by Platform for Live Reporting, Events, and Social Engagement