Mizzou chat with Dave Matter

Mizzou chat with Dave Matter

Bring your Tigers football and basketball questions, and talk to Mizzou beat writer Dave Matter in a live chat starting at 11 a.m. Thursday.




    Hey, chatters. It's that time of the week again. I'll take your Mizzou questions for the next couple hours. Starting .... now:
    Groin injuries typically are lack-of-conditioning injuries. I'm surprised Old School Odom doesn't make Hall return at the bottom of the depth chart and work his way up.
    Not sure there's a question here, so I'll just say ... thanks for playing. Next?
    Hi Dave, obviously the Dru Smith situation with Evansville is getting a lot of attention this week. While I sort of understand the UE stance on this, what did you think of their press release yesterday? It seemed a little over the top to me. They really went out of their way to paint Mizzou in a bad light. Both Mark Spencer and Walter McCarty have taken thinly veiled shots at Mizzou now while neither Jim Sterk or Cuonzo Martin have said a negative thing about Evansville. I felt like they could have been a little more diplomatic. Am I wrong?
    I understand why Evansville doesn't cooperate with MU's waiver request. Mid-major programs don't want to be raided of their talent every time one of their players averages 10 points a game. At the same time, Evansville had a chance to respond to questions from Ben Frederickson before he wrote his column ... and instead waited until after he wrote his column that criticized the school's handling of the situation. I'm always suspicious of a school's honesty when they wait until after they're criticized publicly. Also, the notion that Smith had any role in the hiring of McCarty or approved of his hire is a strange argument. Why would a sophomore player have input in the hire? Especially a player the school feared would transfer? It's my personal opinion that any player who wishes to transfer after the school fires the head coach who recruited that player should be free to transfer and play immediately. Schools can argue that the national letter of intent clearly states that athletes sign to play for a school, not a coach, but that's an unrealistic view of how the process works. 
    All that being said, Missouri's waiver case would have seemed more genuine had MU put in the request much earlier than three weeks ago. MU clearly saw that other transfers were getting approved for waivers and decided to throw its hat in the ring. 
    Hey Dave, thanks for your chat. Any word about Harry Ballard's situation with the football Tigers?
    No update on his status. As I've reported all along, he was investigated for a discliplinary matter this summer, and his status is out of the hands of the football staff.
    All the nuts are on the web today, and I might be one of them with this proposal: After Mizzou goes to 4-5 by losing Saturday at Florida, would Odom consider working the backup QBs into the final three games to figure who they've got for 2019? And I mean, giving them significant playing time -- up to and including just letting Lock stand by and help coach the young QBs through those three games. It could go a long way toward the development of the 2019 offense, and in one respect, it would be doing Lock a solid -- they'd be insuring he didn't suffer a significant injury before the 2019 Draft.
  • That'st just not a realistic scenario. If Missouri is 4-5 this time next week, this team still has a chance to play in a bowl and win seven games, and if the coaches believe that playing Drew Lock gives the team its best chance to win games, it would be unfair to the other 110 players - especially the seniors - to put the 2019 season ahead of the 2018 season. You can't sacrifice the rest of the season and tell the rest of the team the season is meaningless if you start auditioning players for next season. How would Terez Hall or Terry Beckner or Paul Adams react if Odom essentially said, "Guys, we're going to forget about these final three games and put a player on the field at the game's most important position who hasn't earned his playing time like you have, because we want to see what we've got for next year." You'd have a mutiny on your hands if that happened.
  • S&P+ has Mizzou ranked as the 27 team in the country right now and views them more as a 6-2 team (high win probabilities in both SC, UK games). What, if anything, can Odom do to turn these painful/ dumb losses into wins? Do many coaches get better at winning (ie. making strategic choices that directly affect the result of a game) as they progress or is this due to deeply ingrained coaching traits that cannot be reversed? We're starting to get to the point that "Mizzou-ing" could easily become a thing.
  • Part of learning how to win is managing decisions in the final minutes. You can change any one of about five or six plays late in the Kentucky game and Missouri wins that game by a touchdown or more. I don't know if there's anything magical I can come up with that would prevent the staff or the players from doing the opposite of what didn't work in the game. I didn't see anything late in the Kentucky game that we can say was a deeply ingrained trait that's shown up in other games. Was there a specific trend that caused that loss? I don't think there's any one or two things we can pinpoint. The wrong things happened at the wrong time. Like Derek Dooley said Tuesday, heck yeah there are things they wish they would have done differently on offense - because what they did didn't work.
  • Do you miss GOT? Thoughts on the prequel series?
  • The final season will be here soon enough. I can wait, I guess because we have to, right?
  • Saturday's game was extremely disappointing. We received an email yesterday with a survey asking questions about our experience at the Kentucky game. Most of them were the usual concessions, parking, etc., with multiple choice answers. But there were a couple of questions with freeform answers asking what our favorite part was and what we would like to see changed or improved upon. My response to what could be changed is to have a coach who can win some close games. I don't remember ever getting a survey mid-season before. Maybe we have, but is it possible this is part of Sterk's plan to gather fan feedback to support bringing in a new coach?
  • The administration wants to find ways to enhance the experience of attending games. What they're doing is smart. Find out what people enjoy about the experience and what they don't - in terms of things the school can control. Attending college football games is as much an event as it is a game. Other schools in this league do a much better job of entertaining the crowd before and during the game aside from the action on the field. Missouri doesn't get that. But Sterk is sharp. He knows Missouri can't rely on doing things the same old way of doing things to enhance that experience.
  • Do you foresee or have you heard rumors of any combination of Pinson, Guess, or Bruan redshirting? Or is it all hands on deck? For any of them that you don't see redshirting what roles do you see them playing on the team?
  • Pinson definitely won't redshirt. I don't know about the other two. Martin meets with the media this afternoon and it's something I'll want to explore. But with a limited bench, I've got a feeling it's too early to already decide if someone's not good enough to contribute this year.
  • Dave, I think it’s important to say no one who will post here today feels as frustrated and is bothered by the outcome last Saturday than Barry Odom.
  • Of course. That goes without saying.
  • Lock has one game left to play a good game against a good team and WIN, but it is unlikely to happen and this means he never beat a good team and simply piled up great stats against mediocre teams. It is a sad ending to a sad season. Do you think Bryant becomes the next Mizzou QB?
  • No telling on Bryant. He's taking other visits, and there's no reason for him to pick Missouri until he knows who's going to be here to coach him next year. As for Lock, yeah, there's some truth to your premise. If Mizzou loses Saturday and then sweeps Vandy, Tennessee and Arkansas, his record as a starter will be 20-25 and 0-10 against ranked teams. Let's keep in mind, Paul Adams, Kevin Pendleton, Damarea Crockett, Albert Okwuegbunam, Terez Hall, Terry Beckner, Cam Hilton, Emanuel Hall and every other player on this roster are also winless against ranked teams. But the quarterback is the only player we attach a W-L record. Those 10 losses weren't all on Lock. He was hardly the reason Mizzou lost to Georgia last year. He was hardly the reason Missouri lost to Auburn last year. But reality is we measure quarterbacks by wins and losses.
  • I wanted it to work out for Barry but I dont think theres enough time on his side. Sterk needs to sell tickets. I dont think we have starting qb heir for 2019 so next year could be another step backwards. My ? to U Mr. Matter is.. Do you know who Sterk has ties to in the coaching world? Always hear about Mozeliaks list I bet Sterk has on as well. Would be crazy not to
  • Sterk really isn't tied to obvious football coaches other than the coaches he worked with at San Diego State (Rocky Long is pushing 70) and the bad hires he made at Washington State (Bill Doba, Paul Wulff). Sterk didn't have a natural relationship with Cuonzo Martin, so that's hardly a requirement for him to hire a coach.
  • Isn't it fair to say BO is a fine assistant coach and even better person, but not a major college Head Coach? Much the way KA looked in over his head at this level, and he has been better overall than KA, but last Saturday was his tenure as a head coach in a nutshell. How hot is seat actually? Will 6-6 and a idon'tcare.com bowl be enough to bring him back with the things MU is doing to the stadium and program overall. Thanks for your time as always!
  • Common sense says a 6-6 finish is the gray area where a decision on the program's future is hard to project. It's obviously a step backward from last season. On the other hand, it's hard to reason that this team isn't better than the 2017 version. This team is two plays away from being 6-2 and ranked in the top 20. That's not an excuse, but ADs look at things beyond the W-L record, and when you fully evaluate this team and the direction it's gone, this team has played better against better competition - it just hasn't finished two winnable games. Sterk has said he wants this program to be a perennial top 25 team that competes in the SEC. Ultimately, Sterk has to ask himself if Odom is the coach to get that done. And he has to answer that question whether the Tigers win five, six, seven or eight games.
  • Dave, I read that Javon Pickett led Mizzou in scoring in their secret scrimmage against Iowa. Is he someone that could be a surprise go to guy on this roster? Also, any new updates on Santos? Thanks!
  • I'll get an update on Santos from Martin this afternoon, but I suspect he'll say more of the same. It's a week to week situation. 
    From what I understand about the Iowa scrimmage - and I put zero stock in most of these "reports" that can't be proven by a box score - the scrimmage was broken down into separate scored periods or quarters, and Mizzou won each one. Pickett was among the guys who played pretty well. Martin has been praising him since the start of the summer. He will factor into the rotation on the perimeter for sure. Will he be a reliable scorer? Not sure, but this team needs all the scoring help it can get. 
  • Dave - Alternate universe question...where would Missouri rank in the Big XII this year? Have to believe they'd have at least one conference win.
  • Missouri's not in the class of Oklahoma, Texas or West Virginia, but I'd put the Tigers in the same tier as Oklahoma State, Texas Tech, Iowa State. The Big 12 isn't very good. Let's not lose sight of the fact that three of MU's four losses came against teams in the top nine of the CFB rankings. Two of the four losses came on go-ahead points score with 2 and 0 seconds on the clock. Not all 4-4 teams are created equally. I still slotted Mizzou at No. 9 in my SEC power rankings this week - ahead of Tennessee, Auburn, Ole Miss, Vandy, Ole Miss and Arkansas.
  • Hey Dave, as much as I agree the decision to let Dru Smith play should be in the best interest of the player. From a pure basketball standpoint at Mizzou does having him sit this year benefit the program overall with this year seeming like a rebuilding year? I would absolutely love to see him play this year, I’m just curious your thought for where the program looks like it’s headed. Thanks
  • The staff loves Smith and believes he would be its best all-around player this season. There's no real value in having your best player on the bench and missing games, especially when you're short-handed without Porter. The future is still bright. He'll have two more years of eligibility. Puryear and Geist are the only current scholarship seniors. Add Dru Smith, Tray Jackson and Mario McKinney to the mix, plus anyone else they add, and Mizzou will be just fine in 2019-20.
  • Dave please explain having defensive backfield line up in end-zone and allowing ky to complete an intermediate pass and get out of bounds at the 10 yard line. There was too much time on the clock for this defense, and staff's on the job training was obvious. Your thoughts...
  • Odom said that coverage has always worked in end-of-game, end-of-half situations when he's called it before. I'm not defending the decision here, but I can explain the reasoning: From the 27 with 9 seconds left, Mizzou figured UK would get two plays. They didn't want to allow two shots to the end zone, because obviously they didn't feel great about the secondary's chances to make two stops on passes to the end zone. Instead, they'd concede one short pass, knowing UK's only way to stop the clock would be to get out of bounds. Best-case scenario, a DB comes up and makes a tackle and keeps the receiver inbounds as the clock runs out. Worst-case, the receiver gets the ball and ducks out of bounds leaving one last shot at the end zone. Ryan Walters said they hoped Kentucky would get the ball around the 15 instead of the 10. Odom said he'd run the same coverage if he had to again. Maybe that's just pride and he'd instead play man coverage and trust his DBs to make two stops. But that was his answer.
  • For the sake of discussion, let's assume Mizzou goes 7-5 to finish the season, goes to a bowl, and loses. Would/could this be the end for BO at Mizzou, or does a winning record end that discussion? There are many empty seats at Faurot, and BO does not excite the fanbase.
  • If Sterk decides to make a coaching change, it comes after the regular season finale against Arkansas, not after a bowl game. You don't wait until January to make a coaching change. You do it as soon as possible to get a jump on the market. Bowl game results are essentially meaningless in this case.
  • I noticed
    this week that the Paradise Jam games (bball) will be streamed on "flohoops.com"?????? Will they also be available somewhere on tv?
  • The games will not be on regular TV to my knowledge. I'll be in Knoxville for the football games that weekend, so I'm hoping to be able to stream the games myself.
  • Does Evansville's response all but end the chances of a waiver for Dru or does Mizzou still have the ability to appeal?
  • There's no logical reason to expect Evansville to budge on this. The decision is made. From what I understand of the process, the NCAA can't grant the waiver without Evansville's cooperation.
  • How much does Andy Hill earn as an assistant coach? When he coached QBs, we had mediocre QB play. When he coached WRs, lots of dropped passes. Now that he coaches special teams, lots of poor, costly special teams play. Do you think he'll be back next year?
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