OTC: Mizzou Needs To Slay Johnny Football To Gain Shot At SEC Title / Sunflower Meltdown

“There’s no doubt, this is the biggest game in Columbia in 53 years.”
Gabe DeArmond, of PowerMizzou.com, as the Missouri Tigers prepare for their game against Texas A&M Saturday night in Columbia and a chance to play in the SEC title game, 810 AM
GH: In 1960 Dan Devine’s Missouri Tigers finished 10-1 as the Big 8 champs and defeated Navy 21-14 in the Orange Bowl. Ron Taylor was the Tigers starting QB and he completed 23 of 44 passes for 302 yards…for the season. MU’s lone loss that season was 23-7 in the season finale in Columbia to a John Hadl-led Kansas Jayhawks team. Hadl’s season passing stats were not much better than Taylor’s. He completed 43 of 87 passes for a season total of 566 yards. What would 1960 think of Johnny Football?

“Forget senior night. It’s A&M night. I’m going to look at all the fancy, emotional stuff later, and that’ll be great. But right now, we’re playing A&M, man. Our minds are on A&M, not emotions or feelings.”
Max Copeland, MU’s senior left guard, Columbia Tribune
GH: This might be one of my all-time favorite pregame player quotes. Who needs emotions and feelings when you have a football game to play? Let’s get it on!

“When I talk to coaches before games, we’ll be talking about something about how it’s great to be sitting around all day before we play and, ‘Oh, I had a great time. It was great watching games.’ And I’m about ready to stab myself. … I am what I am, focus-wise, intensity. Everybody’s different. I don’t sleep well during the season. That’s just the way it is.”
Gary Pinkel, Columbia Tribune
GH: Why do I get the feeling Charlie Weis needs an alarm clock each morn to wake him from his slumber?

“I think it’s going to be like 38-31. I think it will be a great game. I think Missouri’s going to the SEC title game.”
Frank Boal, 810 AM

“I like Missouri big. Taking down the goal posts and everything!”
Dennis Dodd, 810 AM

“I think Johnny Manziel is going to be remembered for how bad his last two games were. 45-21. That defense for A&M is awful!”
Kevin Kietzman, 810 AM

“A&M at Mizzou.”
Kirk Herbstreit, @KirkHerbstreit, when asked what game he will be working this Saturday, Twitter
GH: The big boys are coming to Columbia for the Tigers try at the SEC East title and another glimpse at Johnny Football. This is gonna be one crazy day and night in CoMo.

“Saturday’s game is huge for A&M’s bowl destination. Auburn (10-1, 6-1) along with unbeaten Alabama are at the top of the SEC invitation list. A&M (8-3, 4-3) might have gotten the nod over Auburn if both had finished 10-2 because it probably would have had a two-time Heisman winner in Johnny Manziel. A 10-2 finish for A&M is no longer possible, but A&M could be still more attractive than Missouri as long as it beats the Tigers. The Capital One and AT&T Cotton Bowl can fight over A&M and South Carolina, providing A&M beats Missouri. But if A&M loses, then the Aggies would be sixth in the SEC bowl pecking order and it would be hello Atlanta and Chick-fil-A.”
Robert Cessna, writer, Aggiesports.com
GH: I heard Dennis Dodd say that this game means next to nothing to A&M. I’m not so sure. The Aggies looked awful at LSU last week but a lot of teams have suffered that same fate in Baton Rouge. Manziel might not be the cuddliest football folk hero but he is one tough competitor. And he LOVES the bright lights. I expect Johnny Football to light up Mizzou for more than 35 but the Tigers should be able to score in the 40s.

“(Mizzou) students are gone now (on Thanksgiving break). Dorms are closed. If you are a student and you don’t come back for this game, you should not be allowed to purchase another ticket to an athletic event – EVER! This game is not going to happen again while you are a student. I don’t know why anybody wouldn’t come back.”
Gabe DeArmond, of PowerMizzou.com, 810 AM
GH: How about it Mizzou students who read my OTC? You coming back to CoMo for the game or are you going to watch history unfold from mom’s couch? Our MU son still hasn’t made it home from Columbia and school has been closed since Friday. Maybe The Antlers kidnapped him. Hell, maybe he was elected Grand Pupa of The Antlers!

“Next weekend…#Mizzou vs. Johnny Football for the SEC East…#Chiefs vs. Broncos for the AFC West…LET’S GO!!!!”
Steven St. John, @SSJWHB, Twitter
GH: Do not forget the Sunflower Showdown. Read on.

“Once Oklahoma figured out Tyler Lockett last Saturday they rolled.”
Dennis Dodd, on Oklahoma’s 41-31 win over K-State in Manhattan, 810 AM
GH: Did Oklahoma really figure out Lockett or did the Wildcat wide receiver just get leg weary after catching 12 passes for 278 yards and three touchdowns? Tyler Lockett should be up for the Heisman. The dude is that freaking good!

“It still amazes me that a university can be so good at one sport and so bad at another.”
Frank Boal, on Kansas’ moribund football program and elite basketball program, KSHB TV 41
GH: Iowa State recorded it’s only Big 12 football win Saturday night with a 34-0 ass kicking of Charlie Weis’ “pile of crap” Jayhawks. Bill Self’s undefeated basketball team looked Final Four worthy as they ran all over overmatched Towson on Friday.

“The team is just not very good. I don’t think they look appreciably better than last year.”
Todd Leabo, on Kansas’ football team, 810 AM

“Weis: Our defense, all year long, has played good enough to have won games. With Cozart on Offense, everything changes.”
Matt Tait, @mctait, after KU’s win at home over West Virginia, Twitter
GH: With Cozart at the helm, KU was shutout in Ames by a bad Cyclone defense. Everything has not changed.

“We’ve had K-State circled all season. We’ve had a running clock waiting for this game since the summer. This is the No. 1 game we want to win every single year, so there’s no doubt we’ll bounce back from this (loss at Iowa State).”
Gavin Howard, KU’s senior center, KUSports.com

“This is a big game for us and a big game for the Kansas program. A win like this could throw everything out the door. Whatever the record was, OK, we beat Kansas State, our rival, we got bragging rights for a whole year. … So we’re just looking forward to preparing and getting ready to beat K-State.”
James Sims, KU’s senior running back, KUSports.com
GH: I would not consider what Sims says here as hyperbole. A KU win over KSU might just make the rest of KU’s awful season irrelevant. Is it likely? No. Bill Snyder enjoys crushing Kansas more than he enjoys crushing a Taco Bell chalupa.

“Jake Heap, I’m sorry, has been a disappointment. I think we could all agree with that. It defies description, but Charlie Weis is a quarterback maker.”
Dennis Dodd, 810 AM
GH: Weis is 0-2 in hyping first-year quarterbacks who were supposed to come in and be the next Bill Whittemore. (Can you tell that I loved watching Whittemore play?)

“I’m still waiting for some guys that (Weis) recruited to be difference makers. I know it’s only been two years but they haven’t been able to find difference makers. That’s scary if you’re a Kansas fan.”
Todd Leabo, 810 AM

“Glen Mason and Mark Mangino proved that Kansas should never be this bad.”
Dennis Dodd, 810 AM
GH: Kansas wasn’t this bad under Terry Allen, who was 20-33 in his five years.

“I speak New Jersey.”
Charlie Weis, when asked if he curses at his players, 610 AM
GH: Maybe this is the problem.

“We do it right, C-Dot. There’s no skimping on food! I’m a traditionalist. Everything you can put on a Thanksgiving plate is on my plate.”
Bill Maas, when asked by Carrington Harrison what would be on Maas’ Thanksgiving dinner plate, 610 AM
GH: My Thanksgiving plate has to include both white and dark turkey meat, a huge heaping of “the good” dressing, a large pile of mashed potatoes, two helpings of the better green bean casserole and maybe a roll. Oh yeah, and drown the entire plate in thick brown gravy. I’ll also improvise as I go through the buffet line, (we dine with my wife’s side of the family for Thanksgiving and all 14 of her siblings pitch in for a massive potluck). My absolute no shows when it comes to eating on Turkey Day are; no yams or sweet potatoes, no cranberries of any kind – real or jiggly, and no Jell-O, fruit-bearing or marshmallow salads. Hate those salads taking up space on the Thanksgiving table.


Enjoy this Thanksgiving holiday with your family and friends. I hope you have too many to make them all happy they were able to spend time with you. And thanks for showing up here occasionally to read my OTC.

PS: Go Chiefs! 

and Twitter / @greghall24

About Greg Hall

Software guy who has been writing my Off The Couch column in KC newspapers, publications and websites since 1994. Has been bounced from some of the finest media establishments this side of State Line Road. Dad first and everything else second...and there are a lot of everything elses.

60 Responses to OTC: Mizzou Needs To Slay Johnny Football To Gain Shot At SEC Title / Sunflower Meltdown

  1. sporty says:

    K-State rolls. Although, KU considers this their bowl game, K-State barely breaks a sweat. It is always nice seeing that high school field in Lawrence filled with purple!

    • Biff says:

      KSU lost to a D2 school this year. This may Snyder’s worst coaching job ever. It also may be Snyder’s last game at KU. I bet he retires again this year of after next year.
      I would say KSU will win but there is a chance KU can win.

      The best thing is ,KU has had good crowds show up all year even with the bad record. All KU can do is hope Charlie gets the team going next year, You can see improvement but the QB play has still been a problem. Another QB coming in next year and Heaps is not that bad and Montell is a threat. Another year and this team should get better.
      It will be a good crowd Saturday with a lot of KSU fans, can’t wait.

      • Guy Who Says What Others Think says:

        For reference only: KU attendance figures from KU Athletics website:

        vs SD = 41,920
        vs La Tech = 39,823
        vs Texas Tech = 35,648
        vs OU = 41,113
        vs Baylor = 32,264
        vs WVU = 30,809
        vs KSU = TBD

        • Alphonse Tooty says:

          KU considers 30,000 a “good crowd.”

          • kylerohde says:

            As did KSU when it had season after season of awful football. It’s so easy for all the purple kool-aid drinkers to forget that they’re historically bad in football, other than the past 20 years. So bad that KU could lose ever matchup from now until 2035 and still be even all-time against KSU.

            • sporty says:

              Ku fans love history! How about the last 20 years, you know, the ones that matter now.

              • kylerohde says:

                Of course we do, since we have the best history of any college basketball program there is ;)

                My only point in that was, when both programs sucked, the attendance sucked. Of course it gets better when the team is good. But I would venture to guess most KSU fans have little to no clue that, taking into account all history, KSU’s basketball history is better than its football history.

                And the rational among you know that once Snyder retires, there’s a damn good chance the program sinks back to mediocrity or worse. He’s a once-in-a-lifetime coach and they’re going to have to try and extend the program’s greatness between coaches, which is a huge challenge for many. Think FSU football until this year, UConn basketball now, Syracuse basketball when Boeheim retires, Alabama football between Bear and Saban, etc. Few programs transcend coaches and KSU football ain’t one of ‘em.

          • Kyle says:

            ksu consistently had trouble drawing more than 20,000 to games pre-snyder. 30,000 is not a good crowd, but when you have this crappy of a football program it could be a lot worse.

        • Biff says:

          KU averaged about 37k for the year may go up after this week. That is good for what the team has bee the last two years. When KU is wining the place sells out like it did under Mangino most of the time.

  2. Bend over KK says:

    I love Mizzou……….it’s great to see some attention on them with the EXCEPTIONAL year the football team has had. SEC EAST Champs!

  3. Dan says:

    Good column, Greg. Although I must say you gave the Sunflower Slowdown way more attention than it deserves. Go Tigers

    • sporty says:

      Hilarious. Mu finally has a decent year, (beating sec teams with key players out) and everything else is second-fiddle? Hey Mu fan, enjoy it while you can.

      • Kyle says:

        I give mu credit for an excellent season. it is remarkable how much it resembles KU’s season in 2007 though.KU avoided the top teams from the South that year and rolled to a 12-1 record. mu has avoided Alabama, Auburn, and LSU and rolled to a one loss season. They will hammer A&M because they have one of the worst defenses in the country, and then we can see how they stack up against bama. My guess is that it will look very similiar to the Ku-mu game at Arrowhead that year. bama will win, but not by a ton.

        • Greg says:

          I think the 2007 game at Arrowhead was 28-7 early in the fourth quarter. KU never made it a one score game except when they had the ball down 34-28 with ten seconds left on their own two. Next play was a sack. Ballgame.

          Score was closer than the game was. But then you guys did go to a BCS game that year. So you MUST have had the better season.

          • Kyle says:

            34-28 with just under 2 minutes left. If they would have recovered the onside kick they likely would have won because mu could not stop them at that point. When they got the ball back at their own 5 there was 10 seconds left and no chance

      • Guy Who Says What Others Think says:

        Yeah, cause Mizzou wasn’t missing their senior starting quarterback or All Conference cornerback or anything during that time. You’re a dipshit. Get used to it, cause Mizzou will be right back next year.

        • Guy Who Says What Others Think says:

          That was directed at Sporty, not Kyle. But for the record Kyle, the comparison to the 2007 KU team doesn’t quite hold. Had KU lost Todd Reesing for 4 games, KU would’ve had 3 or 4 losses.

      • john doe says:

        You mean key players like James Franklin and EJ Gaines, right?

      • Steve says:

        Sporty… MU finally has a decent year? Good to know that winning 8 or more games 8 of the last 11 years and winning 10 or more in four of those seasons isn’t considered decent. Good call.

    • Biff says:

      KC is a KU city. The KC media coverage ranking is:
      Sporting KC.

      Its the reason CBS never Scheduled a MU SEC game to show this year and why MU has such a hard time getting games on TV..

      • Guy Who Says What Others Think says:

        I’m sorry, were there some games where Mizzou WASN’T televised this year? Except for the one non con PPV game, which every SEC team has. Hasn’t MU been on prime time on the ESPN family of networks numerous times?

      • Alphonse Tooty says:

        Yeah, you’re right Biff. It certainly sounded like a KU city when Bill Self came to bat at the celebrity softball game during the All Star Game festivities.

  4. Husker Floyd says:

    Nothing related to sports, but your Thanksgiving plate is identical to mine. It’s the gravy that can make or break the whole deal though. Cranberry sauce and sweet potatoes – I’ll eat cereal before swallowing that crap.

  5. Jeff Gelski says:

    in 1960, KU later had to forfeit the victory over MU because of the use of an ineligible player. Both schools still claim victory. MU’s record book lists the 1960 season as an undefeated one. KU’s record book says KU won.

  6. Splitlog Quindaro says:

    I have a kid at KU and I am a huge KU fan but I could not be happier for MU, and frankly, I may even go to Columbia instead of Lawrence on Saturday. It is a great venue and a great college town and if they make it to the SEC championship game they are doing something Nebraska is dreaming about. Pinkel has proven he is a top coach. Good for him.

  7. Kansas Marine says:

    “I think Johnny Manziel is going to be remembered for how bad his last two games were. 45-21. That defense for A&M is awful!”
    Kevin Kietzman, 810 AM

    Somehow I doubt that. Manziel will be remembered as one of the better collegiate quarterbacks in recent memory. He may be an immature egomaniac, but I’d take him on my team. Kevin dislikes Manziel because he squashed Collin Klein’s heisman campaign.

  8. mike t. says:

    “A KU win over KSU might just make the rest of KU’s awful season irrelevant.”

    greg, if somehow by a fat chance miracle KU is able to beat KSU, my question would be, why the hell didn’t the team prepare and play like that for all of their games? i don’t think it makes the rest of the season irrelevant, i think it totally exposes the team and coaching staff. i’d be happy for the win, but pissed all to hell that opportunities were squandered.

  9. Rosco says:

    Love Missouri’s sycophant media brigade. First we have Mike Kelly numerous observations about the crowd (late arriving, building up, getting loud) to Kelly channeling his inner Jim Rose (come on crowd, need some noise, how bout that crowd). Now we have reporters rounding up and encouraging students to show up for a big game.

    Are these guys on the payroll of the ticket office?

  10. Biff says:

    Two old mediocre Big 12 teams now playing so MU can win the SEC east, now that is funny. . College football fans want to thank these schools for showing what a fraud the SEC is . If these schools can compete in the SEC anyone can.
    SEC most over rated conference in history . Alabama is a great team but the SEC is just like any other conference that has one great team.

    • Guy Who Says What Others Think says:

      So last year when Missouri had a rough go of it, it was because they sucked, the SEC was too good and they’d never compete and shouldn’t have left the Big 12. Now that they come back and have a great year, it’s because the SEC is an average conference, every opponent was playing all second and third stringers, etc. Sorry, but you can’t have it both ways. You can blather on and on about the SEC being overrated, but the simple fact is until other conferences begin beating SEC teams more often that not in the non con matchups or in bowl games, that’s the way it’s going to be.

    • Dan says:

      This is a dumb post. Mizzou and A&M have both experienced a recruiting boost since moving to the SEC. Mizzou, in particular, is getting players they never would’ve had a chance at in the past. The SEC is a powerful brand. A&M has always recruited well but having a Heisman QB certainly helps. So I definitely think Mizzou has gotten better since the move. They’re better than the 2007 team. Maybe you’re right in saying just anyone could win in the SEC but not just anyone could get INVITED to be in the SEC. If you’re privileged enough to get the invite, then you will likely reap the benefits of the recruiting boost. That is what has happened. There is no Big 12 team right now as they’re currently constructed that could do what Mizzou has done in the SEC this season. That’s just a fact.

      • Dan says:

        To be clear, the dumb post I was referring to was from Biff.

        • Guy Who Says What Others Think says:

          Biff is just red-assed KU bitch, whose just enraged by Missouri’s great year. He can’t stand it they aren’t circling the drain. Every comment he makes is ignorant. He also knows with guys like Mauk waiting to take the reins next year, Mizzou will be a solid team for the near future. Will they have alot of 11 win seasons coming? Probably not..but they’ll still be a very successful football program.

  11. JP says:

    K State is a very average team this year. Oklahoma exposed them last week. Having said that, I expect a spirited contest. My worry is Bill Snyder always puts a premium on these games. I expect it to be competitive in the first half, then K State pulls away, 38-20.

    The local media love Missouri. They have already declared victory. It’s time for Missouri to find the banana peel they always find and slip on it. I think A&M wins with a late rally. It will be an entertaining game, but something tells me Missouri will blow it late. Johnny Manziel is not leaving college football with a 2 game regular season losing streak. A&m 41, Missouri 37.

    Finally, I was listening to 810 trying to get updates on Hali and Houston and KK’s show was another psychobabble about the K State season. Then we had the Pinkel interview. Therefore, one of the things I am thankful for is Sirius XM Radio, so I can hear real news about the Chiefs.

    • Guy Who Says What Others Think says:

      The local media (read: KK) declaring an easy win for MU is just downright stupid. It’s going to be a dogfight and MU will need have it’s best game of the year in order to win. I have little confidence in MU’s ability to cover Evans for more than 2 seconds. Missouri is going to have to score 48 points in order to win. But given A&M’s porous defense, that’s very possible. I’m hoping Josh Henson leans on the running game, eats clock, and keeps Manziel & Co on the sideline.

      • JP says:

        I think KK has Manziel Derangement Syndrome from beating his boy Klein in the Heisman race in 2012 as the posters note above. That is probably contributing to his lack of judgment in this case.

      • January says:

        You also said Mizzou would lose badly at Vanderbilt. So much for your prognosticating.

      • Kyle says:

        Obviously not an mu fan, but I don’t see any way A&M stays with them. Seriously, they have one of the worst defenses I have seen. If it turns into a shootout, missouri could score 60 on them.

    • Ward says:

      They already found the banana peel against South Carolina….

    • Guy Who Says What Others Think says:

      Mizzou found that “bananna peel” JP. They picked it up and shoved it right up your ass.

      • JP says:

        Thanks Guy, your class just emanates with every post. You must have been in heaven this weekend, KU lost in hoops and football, Missourah won the SEC East and the Chiefs lost. Hope your not too hung over to post today.

  12. Kerouac says:

    Texas A& M vs Missouri?

    I care not who wins, no allegiance either team.

    As for the performance Johnny Manziel, man-child?

    One of Manziel’s last games perhaps, college football, is of interest to Kerouac.

    A&M’s #2 appears to me a strange amalgam of Flutie & Thigpen, some Steve Young thrown in too… a poor man’s Joe Montana suggests, more so likely Warhol’s 5 portending.

    I look at him/his pro prospects and see a limited ceiling, a reckless style & fragile body not for long (NFL). He has the “me, myself & I” personality tack the modern game down pat though. Maybe he will succeed at the next level, majorly even, but I suspect he will not.

  13. Jared says:

    Complete tangent: I find the term “grand pupa” inexplicably amusing.

  14. One of these years I would like to go more Kilcher family Thanksgiving and treat myself to some delicious Black Bear Shepherd’s Pie and Brown Bear Stew. But to maintain a local flavor, I’d also want to toss in some gizzards ‘n’ red sauce from Go Chicken Go. Good eats.

  15. BlackJack says:

    Yawn.. could care less about college football. However, there are a great slate of college bball games over the next weekend, what with all of the tournaments.

    Bring ‘em – on, should be some good matchups, OKS-PUR, KU-WF, etc. tomorrow

    • Guy Who Says What Others Think says:

      Yet, here you are commenting on a blog entry clearly about college football, Mizzou football for the most part. Maybe your yawning isn’t enough. Perhaps you should jump up and down and scream about how much you don’t care. Or not. Try not posting at all in regards to things you supposedly care nothing about.

      • JP says:

        I love how Guy never finds any fault with Missouri. They can never do any wrong in his eyes. The greatest football program in history!!!

  16. Matchee says:

    As a Tiger fan – I’m scared shitless. This is the game. Last year when they put 70 on us will probably be in the players heads. Not sure if that is good or bad. I do know this year’s Tigers have answered every call- except for Carolina’s miraculous comeback. Lace’s out on two field goals. I have no comments for KU folks- they are a basketball school. Plus the rivalry is dead and they don’t care anymore.

    • john doe says:

      Dont let them fool you. They care.

      • Kyle says:

        To say we don’t care anymore would not be true. For me however, I honestly care a little less each year. It’s sad, I don’t want it to be that way. Even if they play each other in the non con, it won’t ever be the same. KU and mu belong in the same conference.

  17. rio_garchnik says:

    You’d have to be an idiot to leave your family over Thanksgiving weekend

    to drive back to Columbia, and freeze for 4 hours, at night, to sit in a stadium

    when the game will be featured on ESPN

    • January says:

      Maybe the whole family is going to the game? It’s not going to be that cold and to see the Tigers win the SEC East will certainly be worth the drive.

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