Mizzou chat with Dave Matter

Bring your questions and comments about Tigers football and basketball, and talk to Mizzou beat writer Dave Matter in a live chat starting at 2 p.m. Thursday.




  • Hey chatters. Apologies for changing up this week's time. Let's get started here. I'll take your questions for a couple hours.
  • Can I take a second to remind your readers that Cuonzo Martin has yet to coach a game at Missouri? Recent questions on this chat have just about put coach Martin in the same standing as the almighty himself. Terms like “splashy hire”& ”great hire”, and comments like “if Counzo wants Ramey than he’ll get him”. I don’t remember the same sentiment on the day he was hired, it wasn’t until a few days later when Romar was fired. I want nothing more than to see him enjoy much success, but as of now Martin is just kind of the guy that was here when Porter Sr. wanted to move back to Columbia. Am I wrong in not donating money for his statue just yet?
  • I think it's always wise to pump the brakes on preseason hype for a program that's been down as low as Missouri. But there's plenty of reasons to feel good about Martin and what he's done so far to build the roster. Could another head coach have lured the Porters back to CoMo? Sure, of course. But Martin got it done and he also landed Tilmon, Harris and a grad transfer in Robertson. Nobody's building a statue of the guy just yet, but the optimism is more than warranted.
  • Hi Dave. I really want to get your reaction to the Odom post-game rant. IMHO, I think the guy is a bully and a hyper-sensitive one at that. He claims to have "support", but didn't he make Sterk's job easier with this non-factual, self-absorbed, pity party? Thanks for your insight.
  • Wow. Now there's a bold opinion. I admire Odom for showing his emotions. I admire his passion and his confidence. If I were to give him some advice - and he's not asking, so I'm just blowing hot air here - I'd suggest he put himself in a bubble and tune out the Twitter criticism from the third-string left tackles of the world. It doesn't do him any good to get consumed by the countless opinions outside of his program. It was curious to hear his mission now branded as a turnaround. There was always going to be a transition period between the two coaching regimes, but a year ago he talked about the urgency and expectation to win immediately. Now we're hearing about "25 players" who have left the program over the last few years. The 2015 season was full of problems, but the program itself wasn't in a steep decline. Not to the point where two years later they should be getting crushed at home by every FBS team to visit.
  • I guess the real question is can Mizzou get both Webster Groves players to commit which would then put their recruiting class for 2018 back in line with a top 15 class and most importantly most of the players being from the region something KA couldn't do
  • Never say never on Gordon. I know he's visited SLU recently and reaffirmed his pledge on Twitter, but until pen goes to paper in November, I'm not 100 percent convinced Missouri is out of the picture. As for Ramey, I don't have a strong sense from either side - Ramey or Mizzou - that he'll end up in Columbia. Missouri doesn't have a pressing need for a point guard in 2018. It's all about getting athletic wings who can score.
  • Did Gary Pinkel really leave the cupboard so bare that Barry Odom has to actually rebuild the program? He inherited a team that 5-7 the year before, so only one win away from a bowl, and, with less insanity from Maty Mauk, I think they get that win. I wonder what they players must feel when Odom says the program is a "rebuild". Thanks.
  • I agree. The 2015 team was much closer to playing in a bowl than it was crashing to the floor of the SEC. The '15 team had some weaknesses - instability at quarterback the biggest one - but the program wasn't a complete disaster in terms of depth and talent. There has been a lot of roster turnover over the last couple years that contributed to some of the personnel problems now, but you can't blame the past on Mizzou's offensive struggles. This same group of players led the SEC in total offense last year and, more important, was playing pretty good football down the stretch last season.
  • Any shot at any of the de-commits from Louisville?
  • Just touched on Ramey. I'd be surprised if there's a lot of mutual interest, but these are especially uncertain times when it comes to basketball recruiting.
  • What is your take on this FBI indictment? Do you think it might carry over to football? What changes do you see with regards to the future of the NCAA, if any? Could you see Mizzou benefiting recruiting wise?
  • Nobody's safe. Nobody knows what the feds have, so any fans out there are being naive if they think their program can't become the next one to have its skeletons exposed. No telling if this moves over to football. No telling if Mizzou can benefit from this. Keep in mind, the FBI is going after individuals who have committed crimes, not teams or schools. The NCAA could sweep in after the federal investigations and arrests are competed and carry out its own justice aimed at the teams involved. It's still too early to speculate on how this will shake out.
  • Hi Dave...Just curious on your thoughts on the FBI investigation. Are the people that you know in the athletic department at MU surprised by these bombshell announcements? Do you think much change will result in the way college athletics are run (recruiting, stipends, etc.)?
  • There could be some sweeping changes as far as how the recruiting process unfolds, the role of AAU circuits and the influence shoe companies have in the system. It's going to take years to unwind. I haven't had many conversations with Mizzou folks yet. I'm sure MU's compliance department is making sure coaches are up to speed on everything that's happened and making sure their house is in order.
  • Dave, do you think a rebooted program in UAB could beat Mizzou right now. UAB looks pretty decent for not having a football team for 2 years and, well, you know how missouri is playing.
  • UAB? They have a 20-point loss to Ball State, which lost to Illinois. Enough said.
  • Hello. USC fan here, (South Carolina). No real question, just a comment of sorts. I was somewhat shocked that we won our game with you by the score that we did. I am shocked at how fast and how far the Missouri football program has fallen in that span of a year. It is odd. I know they had a lot of returning starters. I hate to say but it looks like the coach has lost the team, or that what he's coaching just isn't sticking or translating. I'm not rubbing it in, I will take the win but I like to see the conference strong as a whole. Wishing y'all good luck and hope it gets turned around sooner than later. we had a decent rivalry starting up. thanks.
  • I was impressed with how clean a game South Carolina played at Mizzou. Solid in all three phases. And then I was surprised to see the Gamecocks lose at home the next week to Kentucky. Right now, I think there's one potentially elite team in the East (Georgia) and five teams that are interchangeable and capable of beating any of them. Then there's Missouri.
  • Hi Dave!
    I know you don't like to talk about replacements for a coach who is still under contract with the University of Missouri, but hypothetically, if Odom is dismissed after this season, do you think the Mike Leach would be a viable candidate to replace him? The guy just wins, wherever he's at, and let's face it, Washington State is not an easy place to develop a winning football program. But he's done it there, as well as Texas Tech, again not an easy place to develop a consistent winner. I know his team's are not known for their defense, but they can light up the scoreboard and play an exciting brand of football. Do you think he'd be a fit for Mizzou in the SEC? As always, thanks for the chat!
  • I would strongly consider talking to him. Proven winner. Exciting brand of offense. His track record and personality and brand name would excite a sleepy fan base.
  • I'm glad Cuonzo has a reputation for being a first class individual, and solid Major College Coach, with a "clean" record. That being said, I'm concerned the recruitment of Jaylen Brown to Cal a couple years ago, from Georgia, may be a problem. I know football is your primary expertise, but I'd love to know your thoughts on the scope of the recent FBI investigation, and if you think the intitial reporting is just the tip of the iceberg?
    For the record I hope Jaylens recruitment by Cuonzo and his Cal staff was legit..it just looks bad, for numerous reasons.
  • Like I said earlier, nobody's safe from the FBI. Brown to Cal was one of those out-of-nowhere commitments when he left the South for Cal, but fans will drive themselves crazy if they worry about potential violations with each and every kid who signs with a school outside of their region.
  • With the depressing dumpster fire that is the mizzou "football" team exhibiting just how bad the game can be played; and a coach that is as sad as he is terrible, please tell me there is a sunrise on the horizon with the basketball team. Thank you.
  • They have a new staff and the No. 1 player in the country and his five-star younger brother and a couple four-star freshmen teammates. Plus some battle-tested veterans. Is that enough sunshine? Mizzou should be competitive with the best teams in the SEC and should settle for nothing less than the NCAA Tournament. Plenty to like about the potential for this season.
  • Do you see the NCAA giving Louisville Mens BBALL the "death penalty"
  • The NCAA has to wait in line behind the FBI to get their hands on Louisville, but I don't think the death penalty should be out of the question.
  • Dave, in your opinion, how big of a deal is the Adidas (an potentially) Nike scandal? Are these cases outliers or is this just a dark look inside how college sports have operated and will continue to operate?
  • I don't think these are outliers. There have been whispers of this kind of activity for decades across college hoops. "Blue Chips" was a fictional movie but based on reality. The difference now is there's an organization with subpoena power and wire taps that's interested.
  • Any chance Coach Pinkel comes back to the rescue the program like Bill Snyder at K-State ?
  • No chance. I spend a lot of time with Gary. Was just with him earlier today. He's not returning to coaching - at Missouri or anywhere.
  • What is with all the college basketball insiders claiming the cheating has been common knowledge for ages? It wasn’t common knowledge to me. Fans of teams that missed on recruits making up excuses is mainly what I heard.

    If they all knew it was this pervasive where are the stories shining light on it before this?
  • Like I said, there have always been whispers of coaches paying players, of shoe companies paying players, of agents paying players. Plenty of coaches have been busted for paying players. Mizzou's been penalized for similar violations in the past. The FBI's role is the game-changer this time around.
  • I want to pile on the FBI questions. How does the FBI get involved and the NCAA does not know what is going on in its own backyard? Also, Rick Pitino must be one of the greatest con men extant and have very few scruples when it comes to wanting to win.
  • I would suggest reading Mark Schlabach's story on ESPN.com for how the investigation started. Last year, a financial advisor was charged by the feds for wire fraud for stealing money from pro athletes. He eventually flipped and become a cooperating witness for the FBI and helped bring down the four assistant coaches who were arrested this week.
  • Seems like Odom wants to give the defense a pass because they are playing a lot of young guys. What is the offenses excuse?
  • But they're not playing that many young guys. What he might do is start playing a lot of young guys. The starting D-line features two seniors, a junior and a sophomore. The starting linebackers are a sophomore and two juniors. The secondary is three seniors and a sophomore. Earlier this week Odom pointed out that some freshmen are playing who normally might not be playing if the defense had more established depth, but that's not what the staff was saying during the preseason. The staff praised those freshmen throughout camp (Whiteside, Turner, Byers, Ulmer, Sparks, etc.) and said they were good enough to help this team. Now it seems they're playing out of necessity.
  • In a game where you are down 48-7 at the beginning of the 4th quarter, or the Purdue game that was over by the 4th quarter, would it not have been wise to give qb's Lowary or Wilson at least a series or two? Lock took a beating, had a broken nose and we have no clear cut No. 2 qb with any experience at this level. Pinkel always managed to give at least one series to the 2nd string qb. Another area that Odom is lacking while having Pinkel as a model. The only answer is that Odom is the head coach of the defense and Huepel of the offense!!
  • That's true about Heupel having autonomy over the offense. Wilson did replace Lock late in the Purdue game for the final series, but all he did was hand the ball off. Bottom line, the staff is set on Lock as the quarterback. They're not going to give a backup a few looks and open the competition. Lock hasn't been good enough for come close to matching the preseason expectations, but he's not THE reason the offense has struggled so much, especially in the Auburn game.
  • Jim Sterk went for a mid to high profile coach when he hired Cuonzo Martin to replace Kim Anderson. I hear the occasional chatter about Sterk going after the Mad Hatter if/when there is a similar need for change in football. I doubt it's likely but would appreciate your thoughts. thanks
  • There's a reason Minnesota and Purdue passed on Les Miles when they had openings this past offseason. He's on the wrong side of 60. (He'll be 65 next fall.) He couldn't develop a quarterback. He ran a prehistoric offense at LSU and refused to evolve. Game management was a consistent problem. Plus, ADs saw all that talent wasted in Baton Rouge the last several years. Miles had an NFL minor league team the last several seasons - at one point last year or early this year, LSU had more players in the NFL than any college program - yet LSU stopped winning championships. He doesn't have the up-and-coming profile that ADs want to hire. He recruited elite talent to LSU because the program sits in the backyard of elite talent. That wouldn't be the case at a mid-tier, mid-budget program like Missouri that's in a state that produces a limited number of Power 5 prospects.
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