Toss-up game. Purdue lost a lot from its defense but has some promise on offense, plus a great coach. And it's at home. I would think Purdue is favored by 3 or 4. That said, Mizzou played its worst game of the season in last year's matchup. Purdue probably peaked in that game. By season's end those teams were pretty similar, though Purdue had better wins over Iowa and Arizona.
If so, that's a bad move. You don't lose to Purdue by 32 points on your home field then play them on the road the next year and expect to saunter through a victory. Memphis is arguably the best Group of Five program in the country. That team won't be intimidated one bit coming to Columbia. Memphis can score - and if Odom hasn't fixed the defense, that figures to be a shootout.
Anybody who expects the defense to be great this year is working on blind faith. That group has a lot to prove. The inside linebacker tandem is solid with Garrett and Hall. A number of D-tackles are good enough to start, led by Beckner. The D-ends are completely unproven. The cornerbacks have a lot to prove. There's not one established playmaker at safety. This is a crucial camp for that side of the ball.
Braun will have to earn that scholarship, but assuming he takes one, and Porter is the only underclassmen to enter the NBA draft and nobody else leaves the program, then Martin will have three scholarships for 2019. If Braun stays a walk-on, then that number moves to four. So much can happen between now and the spring signing date. Remember, though, the Smiths become eligible next year, Dru and Mark, so whoever Martin adds, he's already added two newcomers for 2019-20.
It's not about points and rebounds so much as it's about range. Big men have to develop an outside shot - unless they're overpowering inside forces who can block a ton of shots or dominate around the rim. He doesn't fit those descriptions right now, so he'll have to become better suited for the modern NBA game to become a draft prospect with a chance to leave early. The NBA isn't a post-up game any more. Bigs have to shoot to some degree. He's a worker, so I imagine he'll polish his game to reach that point eventually.
We can watch 12 of 17 practices but that doesn't include the scrimmages. We can talk to Odom and select coaches and players after each practice. Access is fine. Don't expect any play-by-play observations from practices. We're prohibited from writing about the content of the practices we watch. We've got plenty of access to cover camp.
We don't have any signings planned but we could arrange something possibly. Email me or DM on Twitter.
I don't make full-season predictions before camp. I'd rather watch the four weeks of practice first. Every year our staff picks puts out season predictions shortly before the first game.
They're counting on him to get minutes at point guard. He's missed a lot of workouts and time in the weight room by not being on campus for the last month. Will that delay his development? We'll see. It's a big storyline heading into the season.
He's the athletic director for the Jefferson City public school system, so, as of now, I don't see him returning to college coaching.
Headed into 2013, there were still decently high expectations for that group. Boehm was a high-profile recruit and the staff really liked Morse, McGovern and Britt. At the time I'm not sure anyone thought Britt and Morse would become multiyear NFL starters. But then you watched that 2013 offense on game days, you could see those guys had a pretty high upside. As for the 2018 line, Durant has that kind of upside. I think Wallace-Simms does, too. They've got that prototypical size for their positions. Adams is a very good college linemen and I suspect he'll get a shot at the next level. Maybe Pendleton, too, because of his power, toughness and intelligence. It's not easy becoming an SEC starting center as a redshirt freshman, so Castillo has pretty high potential, too.
Lindsey Scott was recruited to potentially be the heir apparent to Lock, so it shouldn't be a shocker that he's on the depth. Lowary was always on the depth last year, too, and the staff has always liked him as an older, mature player. Either way, those backups will get a chance to compete for that No. 2 job - and then it all starts over again next year to replace Lock.
If we're talking in the SEC, yes, Florida. Mullen is an established winner. Fisher will win at A&M, but the Aggies won seven games last year, so not sure a turnaround is the right phrase there. If we're talking about the entire country, I think Nebraska should make some strides under Scott Frost.
Yes, he's the wide receivers coach at Michigan.
The secondary. If there's an injury or two on the O-line, you can move guys around with the depth that's developing there and avoid having any major setbacks. The secondary has to improve for this team to make progress from 7-6.
OK, sports fans, that's all for today. Lots of stuff to write in the coming days as football camp gets started tomorrow. We'll likely skip next week for the Mizzou chat as I'll be on the course at Bellerive. But we'll pick things up the following week.