First the O/U question. I'll go under. Improving from eight wins to 25 is just such a drastic improvement - and that's essentially based on the hypothetical addition of two freshmen.
Porter can be a high-volume shooter, but he can score at all three levels: Dunks/layups, free throws and 3-pointers. His size and skill combination makes him such a tough matchup both inside and out. He'll have to get stronger to handle some of the defenders he'll face in the SEC, but he should be able to get 17-20 points against most teams not named South Carolina/Kentucky/Florida.
I haven't had that conversation with Martin. Those are delicate talks with returning players. Most coaches who step into programs have some experience with these decisions. It happens every year in football regardless if there's a coaching change.
MU has three scholarships available if there is no roster attrition. If some of these high-profile players truly want to play for Mizzou, Martin will need to find some spots. At this point, some roster turnover is probably inevitable. This is very common with coaching changes. Several spots magically appeared on SLU's roster when Ford took over.
There's more excitement over Porter, because the program is at a worse spot than the football program found itself in February 2012. Mizzou had come off seven straight bowl seasons when DGB signed. He wasn't coming to save the program. Porter, on the other hand, arrives when MU hoops is at rock bottom. I think fans who understand both sports realize that freshman phenoms in basketball can have a stronger immediate impact than a receiver in football, who requires a competent quarterback to help him make plays.
It won't take much for the basketball team to double its wins total. In fact, it will be a disappointment if MU hoops only wins 16 games. If MU football wins 8 games in 2017, it will be an unquantified success story. So, I expect basketball to improve by a bigger margin.
Could be as late as July. Unsigned players can wait until Aug. 1 to sign a NLI.
I wouldn't say it was any more strained than the relationship Mizzou fans had with the prior regime. The program had bottomed out, was trending downward. It wasn't an attractive program for recruits, much less one-and-done five-star recruits. If you were Michael Porter Jr. or any other high-profile recruit with decent offers, the prospect of playing in Anderson's fourth year wouldn't be all that appealing. Martin is a proven winner at the Division I ranks. He's not known as a miracle worker, but the program clearly has more upside under new leadership.
I haven't heard anything one way or the other. With a new AD and new football coach in the mix since that contract was signed, there could be changes to those contracts.
I can't imagine that would happen. Everyone on this roster might not be cut out to play for a power conference Division I team, but I think everyone on the roster could play for a mid-major or low-major Division I team. There's a big dropoff between playing for a Missouri Valley or Ohio Valley team and dropping down to Division II.
Anderson's undoing was the ability to recruit players that could help Mizzou win in a major conference. Yes, the bulk of his last team was freshmen and sophomores, but in today's game you have to win with freshmen and sophomores - not necessarily reach the Final Four but win games in the teens. Frank Haith didn't leave behind the best situation. Anderson inherited some unfortunate factors. But you can't make the case the talent is good enough or the coaching is good enough when you lose home games to Eastern Illinois, NC Central and Lipscomb.
It's becoming a common trend in today's college athletics. Remember Teki Gill-Caesar? He was getting ready for his senior year at Huntington Prep in the summer of 2014 then reclassified and enrolled at Mizzou for his freshman year even though he had technically just finished his junior year at the HS level. High school athletes can secure a lot of college credit before they start college and can get a lot of required courses out of the way early so that they're just taking electives by the time they're seniors. It's not possible at every school for every student, but for certain kids who can get the work done, they can have the option of reclassifying.
I asked his dad if he's requested MU release his from his NLI and he wouldn't say either way. I suspect he'll stick with his pledge to Missouri when he makes his announcement on Monday.
The only available score is from his first year at Cal: 960. That's just under last year's Division I average multiyear score. At Tennessee, his scores were in the 960s or 970s. More than adequate.
All Odom has said is he's suspended. Practices resume on Tuesday. I'll have an update then.
Mizzou began the year with 12 scholarship players, one under the max. Twelve minus two is 10. So they have three for 2017-18.
Odom has said they'll stick with the philosophy they used in the final five games of last season, which is the system they used in 2015.