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.

    I thought we saw more creativity in Week 1.
    We saw a wide receiver take several snaps at QB.
    We saw two wide receivers operate zone-read running plays.
    We saw an attempted wide receiver pass.
    We saw a six-man O-line with an extra tackle on several snaps.
    We saw pre-snap motions and shifts.
    We saw some designed QB keepers that Mizzou couldn't call last year.
    No reason to show everything in Week 1, but I thought it was more innovative than nothing but outside zone running plays for the tailback like we saw most of last year.
    I noticed that on 4th and short last week we ran a shotgun formation when it was a running play. Why wouldn’t they run from the line of scrimmage for a run play or shotgun if the qb was going to throw? The play call seemed poor and we turned it over on downs.
    Is this a question from 2007 when Dave Christensen ran shotgun plays in short-yardage?
    Do special teams coach ever give the punter the ability to run if there are no defenders? I have noticed on some short 4th downs the return team runs away quickly and leaves lots of yards where the punter could get a first down quickly.
    Some teams allow the punter to make that call if they see a certain look from the return unit. You better trust your punter and he better be athletic enough to carry the ball 10-12 yards.
    Fighting Illini question: Should fans be encouraged by the defense and the yardage the offense is racking up, or disappointed by the red zone failures and turnovers that gave the last game back to Indiana? Of course, it is possible Indiana is just better than expected. Any thoughts on how the Illini football team is or isn't coming together?
    They look pretty inconsistent to me. I think Bielema is a good coach and Ryan Walters knows what he's doing calling the defense. He's going to get a head-coaching job in the next five years. Illini have some good pieces. They'll run Chase Brown until his legs fall off, but I'm not sold on the QB. I get why Bielema went out and got a veteran from the portal, but I'd be more excited about that team to see them invest in a young playmaker who could hurt teams with his legs. 
    They should be 2-0. They should get to 3-1 before playing at Wisconsin. I think they can get to six wins. Beat Virginia and Chattanooga at home, Nebraska on the road, Purdue at home and Northwestern on the road. It's possible. Hell, if they can score a touchdown they might beat Iowa, too.
    I was at the Mizzou season-opener last week. Just a few thoughts from a fan's point of view regarding some of the changes implemented in and around the stadium: When I first heard about the new option of making a food order from your phone and picking it up in some kind of locker, I thought it sounded kind of weird. But I tried it, and it actually was easy to do and efficient. Best part of it of course is avoiding standing in potential long lines at the concession stands. It was a good move to have an employee stationed by the lockers to assist people who had any issues or questions on how to pick up their order.
    Something new that was not so great? I didn't care much for the do-it-yourself-ticket scanners outside the entrance to the stadium. I found it confusing to use and it appeared that other ticket holders were also having trouble with it.
    I thought the revamped student section was awesome--kudos to DRF for making that happen and kudos to the kids for showing up and filling up that area, and for being loud and enthusiastic.
    Mizzou expected to have some bumps in the road the first game with all the new additions around the stadium. Knowing the AD, she already had a list of hiccups to address by Sunday morning before they host another game next week.
    Dave, I look forward to your chats every week. Thank you. It seems most sports analyst do not expect Mizzou to win this game in Manhattan, KS. I think Mizzou has a better chance to win than these "expert analysts" believe. CFN is the only place I've seen that has Mizzou winning. collegefootballnews.com
    Will a win vs KSt finally open the eyes of these experts?

    SEC BBall schedule released. How well do you think they will due based on the recently released SEC Sched?
    Weekly reminder: Quit putting stock in "national experts" who don't actually cover the team and couldn't find Boone County on a map. Stick with us at STLtoday.com. We had three reporters at the LA Tech game. We'll have three in Manhattan on Saturday. We're all you need.
    As for the hoops schedule, it's really difficult to make predictions for a completely rebuilt team with only a few pieces that have ever played together - regardless of the schedule. The nonconfernece slate sets them up to start 7-0. Here's the schedule and I'll label each game as WIN, WINNABLE, LIKELY LOSS. Home games are in bold
    Southern Indiana WIN
    Penn WIN
    Lindenwood WIN
    SIUE WIN
    Mississippi Valley State WIN
    Coastal Carolina WIN
    Houston Baptist WIN
    at Wichita State WINNABLE
    Southeast Missouri State WIN
    Kansas LIKELY LOSS
    UCF (in Miami) WINNABLE
    Illinois (in St. Louis) WINNABLE
    Kentucky LIKELY LOSS
    at Arkansas LIKELY LOSS
    Vanderbilt WIN
    at Texas A&M
    at Florida LIKELY LOSS
    Arkansas WINNABLE
    Alabama WINNABLE
    at Ole Miss WINNABLE
    Iowa State WINNABLE
    LSU WIN
    at Mississippi State WINNABLE
    South Carolina WIN
    at Tennessee LIKELY LOSS
    at Auburn LIKELY LOSS
    Texas A&M WINNABLE
    Mississippi State WINNABLE
    at Georgia WINNABLE
    at LSU LIKELY LOSS
    Ole Miss WIN
    Mind you, this is not the most educated system or analysis. But If Mizzou indeed wins the WINs and wins some of the WINNABLEs, this team can win 15, which would be respectable for a first-year staff.
    I'm still seeing 8.5 and 7.5 for the spread, so I split the difference with the poll question.
    If I recall correctly, players can play up to 4 games while maintaining redshirt status. Do you think we can expect more action from some of the true freshman on the roster during the back end of the year, or perhaps their playing time is rotated throughout the season?
    I doubt you'll see Mizzou use the four-game rule late in the year unless the Tigers aren't playing for much by then or there's a flood of injuries. You usually see those players play in games like LA Tech, Abilene Christian and New Mexico State, which falls in November. Mizzou listed only x true freshmen as playing last week:
    WR Luther Burden
    OT Armand Membou
    WR Mekhi Miller
    S Ja'Marion Wayne
    When he transferred to Mizzou, Mookie Cooper seemed to have all kinds of hype. At least thus far, he hasn’t even come close to justifying any of it. We've seen flashes of what he can do in open space, but he hasn’t been the playmaker that both him (I think this is fair to say) and fans had hoped for. In fact, I don’t think he even had a catch in the La Tech game (and maybe 1-2 targets total?) Things can always change, and I’m really pulling for him to find success at Mizzou, but personally I’ve dampened expectations for him. What do you think should be expectations for him, or his role on the team, going forward?
    He was hurt most of last year with a foot injury he suffered in camp and then they rushed him back before he was ready. 
    He played 31 snaps last week but zero targets. Sometimes the ball just doesn't come your way. If this continues a month into the season then it's fair to say it's just not working out. But we've said all along the strength of this team is wide receiver. And when you're deep, that means not everyone is going to get a lot of touches every week. Two players accounted for nine of the 18 completions when Cook was in the game. And if you ask me, it was the right two catching half the passes: Lovett and Burden. 
    What’s your prediction for tonight’s game between the Buffalo Bills and *that team from Los Angeles*?
    Give me the Bills. Better QB. Better team. Better defense.
    I really enjoyed your podcast this week-can we expect more guests?? Also, I was thinking about the topic of selfless players who aren’t concerned about the amount of touches but rather how the team is doing as a whole. Is this true for this team? It seems like cooper isn’t satisfied with his touches and may be regretting his decision to come to Mizzou.
    Based on what? Did Mookie say something publicly about his touches? I've never heard him say anything negative about his role or production in any interview he's ever done. 
    I'm nowhere near close to comparing this year's WR group to the 2006-08 era of receivers/tight ends. Those guys were special players and special people. You'd hope this year's edition can duplicate that level of selflessness, but way too early to have that kind of read on a team. Sometimes those qualities are easier to see after a loss than a win.
    As for podcast guests, we had a handful of guests last season and hope to again this year. Glad you enjoyed Coffman. 
    Two things stuck out from the offense in last week's win - 1. We did not do well running between the tackles for the most part and Mookie Cooper was not able to get open. Defensively, Hopper is quite the linebacker and we need a little more from Jeffcoat.
    Just because he didn't get targeted doesn't always mean he wasn't open. Maybe Cook's reads took him somewhere else on the field or someone else was more open. I can't say I charted every one of Cooper's snaps to see if he was open - or if the ball just went elsewhere.
    I think KSTATE has a QB that turns the ball over. They have a really good all american running back in Deuce Vaughn. Malik Knowles is good. What do you think of the matchup between Felix Anudike-Uzomah versus Javon Foster?
    They'll move Felix around so both tackles have to block him, but it's a huge test for Mizzou and both tackles. Foster was very good all last season - and very good again last week. It's a great test for Felix, too. This much is true, too: Cook is slippery in the pocket and does a good job of stepping up and either getting rid of the ball against pressure or taking off and running.
    Does intention grounding count as a sack?
    Yes, Isaiah McGuire was credited with a sack on the intentional grounding penalty last week.
    Dave, I find Dawn Staley's action taken in canceling games with BYU over slurs a bit much considering how her reaction to SC fans treatment of Mizzou players a couple of years ago was brushed aside when she sued Jim Sterk for his remarks afterwards. Your thoughts?
    I'm not sure I want to dive into this one. South Carolina couldn't find any witnesses to corroborate Sterk's allegations. Staley clearly felt strong enough about Duke's allegations to cancel the series with BYU, which is her right. She hasn't said anything critical, to my knowledge, about BYU only that she didn't want to put her team in the same position the Duke volleyball team experienced.
    Our Receivers gotta stop tipping the ball or we will have more interceptions
    Dave Steckel made that point on the broadcast. When a receiver tips a pass it's usually good news for the defender.
    Hypothetical time: say Mizzou and any potential non-conference P5 opponent has open availability. Is it more appealing to schedule schools that are relatively close geographically (ex- Northwestern, Louisville, Iowa, etc.) or schools that require travel and for that reason create intrigue (ex- Oregon State, Virginia, Rutgers, etc.)? As a side note, most SEC would probably fit the latter description, but that’s besides the point.
    If you care about your fans and want them to make the trip to support you on the road it makes more sense to schedule games at Kansas State than Boston College or San Diego State. (Mizzou plays at SDSU in a few years.) The same applies if you care about playing a game in your recruiting region.
    That said, I know a lot of MU fans went to the Boston College game and loved the trip. (My wife included.) There's some value in playing in a unique location - but not every year.
    Given your Walters response, " ... Ryan Walters knows what he's doing calling the defense. He's going to get a head-coaching job in the next five years." I was surprised at the time at his departure from MU. I too thought talented up and comer. I can appreciate HCED wanting to staff his program, however, given MU's D, and musical chairs on D-Coordinators, since Walters departure, I think this was a significant loss. Any insider sense on what went down with his departure?
    Ryan got a good offer for a fresh start at a new program. I was never told he was fired - but he wasn't discouraged from looking around. Drinkwitz later told me that he wanted to run a defense that was more versatile than the system they had in 2020. Could that have been possible if Walters returned for 2021? Possibly. But I don't think it's a coincidence that every defensive coach Drinkwitz initially kept on staff for that first season has since been fired or left on their own. Sometimes if you're trying to build something new, there's some tension or uneasiness when you have coaches around who were part of the prior regime.
    The new pregame video was awesome! Loved how it included a montage of older pregame videos from years past, including the return of the animated Tiger running on the Mizzou campus all the way to Faurot Field where it attacks the opposing teams' football helmet! Also, enjoyed hearing the return of the Tiger Roar sound effect!
    The Sean Weatherspoon-narrated intro was really good. Not sure if you could tell in real time at the stadium but he was counting down from 60 ... and when he got to certain numbers, instead they showed well known players wearing that number. At 28, they showed TJ Moe running down the sideline on the Moe Miracle vs. San Diego State. At 27, they showed Brock Olivo scoring a touchdown. They showed Chase Daniel at 10, Jeremy Maclin at 9, etc. Really well done.
    KState by double digits. Mizzou implodes in the aftermath limping to 5 wins. Drink on the hot seat next year after he reels in a recruiting class ranked north of 35.
    Maybe. Maybe not. It certainly possible K-State wins big on Saturday.
    Hey Dave - any chance at a future article looking into the Mizzou fanbase in St. Louis and and continued animosity from 2015 and the protest on campus? Mizzou became a bit of a lightening rod nationwide that year and I've always wondered if we are still seeing the ripples of that, or if the lack of support is related to the poor on-field quality, which seemed to happily coincide to make an absolutely disaster of a period for the university. To clarify, as an alum who was at Mizzou at the time, I was supportive of the football team and hunger strike, but I knew plenty of diehard mizzou fans who said they'd never spend another dollar at the university.
    Hard pass for now.
    I'm guessing those fans who stopped supporting the program because of a 48-hour practice protest aren't going to talk on the record about their feelings. I got lots of emails from some of those folks over the years and they didn't strike me as people who want to publicly attach their names to their comments.
    Can the running-back-by-committee thing work for Mizzou? Obviously started out great with it last week, albeit against a lesser opponent. When I look back on the last 25 years or so of Mizzou football, it seems like we've always had that one go-to RB--and mostly with good to great success at that--from Zach Abron all the way up to Tyler Badie.
    Last time I can recall MU going with a RB-by committee approach was mid-90s with Olivio, West, Blackwell. That approach ended up working very well of course in Larry Smith's run-oriented offense at the time--and also with Corby Jones being excellent running with the ball himself in that offense.
    The committee approach is a lot more common than you might remember.
    The 2010 team won 10 games with Henry Josey, De'Vion Moore and Kendial Lawrence sharing the carries. They each got between 73 and 96 carries. The 2013 team was somewhat similar with Josey, Marcus Murphy and Russell Hansbrough all getting at least 92 carries.
    Hansbrough and Murphy split the carries fairly evenly in 2014; Hansbrough and Ish Witter in 2015, then Witter and Damarea Crockett in 2016, then Witter and Larry Rountree in 2017.
    Also: any chance stan kroenke isn't still mad at us and might be willing to donate a couple mil to Mizzou football? lol we need help, and he owes us
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