I don't think he lands the Porters. Michael Sr. joined the staff so he could return home where his daughters play and so he could bring his wife and younger kids back to CoMo. Saint Louis isn't home to them. Columbia is home. Does Martin land Tilmon at SLU? Possibly. But Tilmon has explained that it was the players in the recruiting class that sold him on Mizzou, not necessarily the staff. He formed a quick bond with Porter, Roberts and Harris.
I don't share much personal stuff here, but thought this was funny. Last night, I'm dining out with the Matter family in downtown Columbia. My 7-year-old twin boys like sports and like Mizzou sports, but they're hardly starstruck by athletes. A certain five-star future NBA lottery pick walked into the restaurant and ordered takeout. I mentioned to my boys who it was. I got a couple shrugs. Jackson Matter: "I've read books about Abraham Lincoln. He's more famous." Connor Matter: "I've been to a Zac Brown concert. He's more famous." Touché, boys.
Maybe. Mizzou will get some chunk plays most games. Those receiver screens that went for 50 yards against MSU might go for just 12 against a credible SEC defense. But I still think the Tigers will move the ball in this game. There are just too many playmakers for this offense to stall for four quarters. A key is getting favorable matchups with the slot receivers and tight ends. South Carolina likes to keep its three linebackers on the field. Bryson Allen-Williams, their 6-foot, 230-pound SAM linebacker, is versatile, but can he hang with Johnathon Johnson in the open field? Can he cover 6-6 tight ends?
To be accurate, Odom said after the first week he was having a good camp. Then we didn't hear his name again. Camp is three weeks long. He didn't produce much in the scrimmages.
I'm sure you won't be alone Saturday.
Gordon isn't doing interviews but I'm not convinced he's dead set on playing for SLU. We'll see how that develops. As for Watson, I take him at his word that he wants to play closer to home. His situation could still have some twists and turns.
Just imagine in Calan Crowder played in the second half? He looked genuinely fast but you're right. Mizzou's defenders should be able to catch him from behind. MSU's O-line did a nice job holding onto their blocks on the first and second level. I thought the misdirection plays and motions really had Mizzou's front seven playing tentatively. It was a great adjustment on the part of Mack Brown and Sean Coughlin, Stec's OCs, had a great game plan. They had Mizzou's D guessing and the backs did a nice job poking holes through the alleys.
Tackling. You can learn from coverage mistakes and fix those in the film room. I'm not sure you can fix tackling in a week.
Here's why it's too early to give up on Mizzou's defense. Last week's game reminded me of the 2014 home loss to Indiana. MU's defense was wretched in that game. Granted, Indiana had a couple NFL players on the field that day, including one of the best running backs in the league in Tevin Coleman. But after that game, the defense circled the so-called wagons and played much better the rest of the season. In SEC play, Mizzou allowed the fewest yards per game in the conference and carried the Tigers to 11 wins because the offense was so inconsistent. So, there's your hope for the next 11 weeks.
BenFred made that point at STLtoday.com a couple days ago. Mizzou is locked into paying Cross a lot of money through the 2018 season. They'd owe him $600K if they terminate without cause. Firing him would cripple the salary pool, especially with less ticket revenue coming in these days.
Thanks for the note. It seemed like they struggled when they got out of their base 4-3 defense, and maybe the players in the sub packages weren't ready for those new roles. You solve that by going back to the base, but you can't be vanilla every down, every week in the SEC. Good coaches will pick up on tendencies and exploit those coverages and alignments. These players need to be able to handle multiple personnel groupings and coverages and pressure packages - or the coaches have to do a better job teaching.
I don't necessarily agree. Pinkel didn't have a set defense. He left that up to his coordinator. His coordinator in 2015, when the defense was pretty good, was Odom. The players couldn't handle the system Odom tried to install last year so he gave in and went back to the style they played in the past.
Logan Cheadle's job shouldn't be open for competition. He graded out really well. You can say they should open all the jobs all week, but at some point, you need your starting defense on the field to practice together during the week. They only practice Sun, Tues-Thurs. Friday is a lighter walk through. You can't have auditions all week. That's what August was for.
Cheadle played well. I thought Garrett was active inside. Not great but active. Beckner moved the pocket some. That's about it.
He's not going to give up on the defense after one game. He made it clear they played terrible on Saturday. He didn't do much polishing. He's also working with kids compared to the pros in the NFL. If they're lacking confidence after one game, it wouldn't be right for him to start shredding his players publicly.
I don't know. Maybe. I can't get in the head of the fans. The running backs have been great under his watch.
Saturday's paper, as always.
He distributed the ball all over the place. He threw to the right guy most of the time, if not every time other than the interception. He didn't really force anything off the top of my head, again, other than the INT. He played well. The windows will be a lot tighter the rest of the season.
Yes, walk-on Nick Bartolotta. If McCann misses some costly kicks, you might see the backup get a shot. Odom was clearly frustrated after the game. "We can't go down that road," he said, in terms of another season with kicking problems.
It depends where Samuel lines up. From the clips I've seen, he's been on the left side of the formation, which means he'll be across from Cheadle. After last week's game, I think that's probably the best look for Mizzou, with some safety help there, too.