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SI.com college football writer Stewart Mandel shares his commentary, analysis and random tidbits on the latest developments around the country.
7/20/2007 01:35:00 PM

Missouri: The Makings of a Champ?

Earlier this week, I devoted the lead section of my Mailbag to an examination of Bill Callahan's Nebraska program. Apparently, I was wasting my time, because apparently, the Huskers are not even the best team in their division.

The Big 12 released its Media Preseason Poll, and the overwhelming favorite among conference media to win the North Division was … Missouri. Really. In fact it wasn't even close -- the Tigers received 16 of 24 first-place votes, as many as picked Texas to win the South.

My initial instinct was to chalk up this bizarre occurrence to the preponderance of Missouri journalism grads in the media world (including two of my editors), but upon further research, apparently several prominent preseason magazines (like Phil Steele) have tabbed the Tigers as well.

Still puzzled, I did a little more checking, and sure enough, Gary Pinkel -- 37-35 in his six years in Columbia -- is still Missouri's coach.

Talk about blind optimism.

Don't get me wrong, Missouri on paper has all the makings of a decent football team. Chase Daniel, coming off an impressive debut season in which he threw for 3,527 yards and 28 touchdowns against 10 interceptions, returns to lead the Tigers' shotgun-spread offense, and he'll have 1,063-yard rusher Tony Temple and sure-handed tight ends Chase Coffman and Martin Rucker back, too. The defense is less experienced but has been fairly consistent for some time now, ranking in the top 50 nationally the past three seasons.

So why was I so surprised by Thursday's poll results? Because to pick Missouri to win the North one must conveniently overlook the fact they've choked away one opportunity after another over the past several years.

It's no secret the Big 12 North has not exactly been a gauntlet of doom these past few years. With Nebraska undergoing a difficult transition from the option to the West Coast offense, Kansas State slumping during Bill Snyder's final years and Colorado reeling in the aftermath of its ugly recruiting scandals, the division could not have been more ripe for Pinkel's upstart program. Especially once it became apparent the Tigers had a program-changing player in four-year QB Brad Smith.

But Missouri's best showing during Smith's tenure was an 8-5 record in 2003, going 5-6 and 7-5 his last two seasons. Daniel has proven to be a much better fit, and the Missouri stormed to a surprising 6-0 start last year. But in typical fashion, the Tigers dropped four of their next five, including a 21-16 loss to dreadful Iowa State. A telling moment came late in the third quarter of an Oct. 28 game at Oklahoma. Missouri drove the ball all the way to the Sooners' 1-yard line with a chance to take the lead only to run four straight plays out of the shotgun, including having Daniel throw a jump ball into the end zone on fourth and goal. OU wound up winning 26-10.

So tell us, Big 12 media, why is this year Missouri's year? Is it because of the favorable schedule in which Nebraska, Texas A&M and Texas Tech come to Columbia while Texas is off the slate completely? Is it because the Kansas game, which would have been in Lawrence, has been moved to Kansas City? Or is it because Daniel and the offense are just that good?

My advice: If in six years, a coach's team has yet to break .500 in conference play, don't expect things to magically change in Year Seven.
posted by Stewart Mandel | View comments |


Posted: 4:11 PM   by Clarkent
Er, the Missouri - Kansas game moving from Lawrence to Kansas City is hardly a big deal. Lawrence is just a short drive from Kansas City.
Posted: 4:23 PM   by Knox
So, this is the year of the Tigers? Well, the hacks are all betting on the pass line. If there is a Mizzou miracle season, plenty of roaring will be heard. During the season to come, I do believe that the alumni will be stirred, the student body will be hopeful, the team will enjoy some success, and we will all move through time as is inevitable.
Posted: 5:58 PM   by HUSKER FAN
1ST of all the HUSKERS def. is one of the best in the country. 2ND the HUSKERS have a better off. and a better QB in Sam Keller unlike baby boy Daniel. 3RD Mizzo always screws up in the end. They will never have any respect and the polls are a joke.
Posted: 7:26 PM   by Huskers95
Sorry Mizzou Fans, but I don't think its gonna happen this year. I just don't see Mizzou beating Nebraska, especially after last year's showing. Think of it this way, last year Mizzou was totally dead at halftime. Yes, they came back in the fourth quarter...but that was against a Nebraska Pass Defense without shut-down corner Zach Bowman and without new star Larry Asante. If pollsters are picking Nebraska to possibly upset USC, do you REALLY think Mizzou will have a chance? I love all my Big 12 brothers, but sorry Mizzou, its just not gonna happen unless Nebraska really screws up against TWO other Big 12 teams. I can see us dropping one to Texas...but other than that....
Posted: 9:30 PM   by Dennis7474
Husker fan,

Really, Keller better than Chase Daniel?? What has Keller done again? Chase Daniel threw for over 3,900 yards last year, how many did Keller throw for? Husker defense one of the best in the country? Ok, sure, check back at the end of year.


Remember the last two times the fuskers played at Faurot? What was the score in each of those games?

Keep drinking that kool-aid guys, it does a body good.
Posted: 10:35 PM   by Huskers95
At least Nebraskan's have kool-aid to drink out of their Big 12 North Champion Commemorative Cups. That said...
Bringing up 2003 and 2005? I'm sorry you apparently missed the last 30 years. Nebraska owns you. Bringing up your TWO wins in the past 28 years is just silly. Thats like me gloating about the Huskers pounding you guys all throughout the 80's and 90's. Maybe if you fire Gary Pinkel and bring in someone who can coach, I'll get scared you could challenge for the Big 12 north title. Until then, I'll worry about Texas and Oklahoma.
Talk to me when you win ONE Big 12 Conference Championship or get a team that DOESN'T choke away its chances to win every big game that comes its way. Have fun in the Thrifty Bowl.
Posted: 10:47 PM   by Huskers95
And 1 more comment:
Sam Keller 2005:
Completion Percentage: 59%
Total Passing Yards: 2165
Yards/Game: 309
TD/Int: 20/9
Games Played: 7!!!!

Chase Daniel 2006:
Completion Percentage: 63%
Total Passing Yards: 3527
Yards/Game: 271
TD/INT: 28/10
Games Played: 13

You can go to SI's stats page to verify all this. And concerning the Blackshirts: They were right behind Mizzou (or ahead) in every Big 12 defensive category, including total Defense and Scoring Defense. So if the Husker D is atrocious, then Mizzou is only slightly less atrocious.
Posted: 10:55 PM   by Huskers95
This also made me laugh:
From the Article:
"Chase Daniel, coming off an impressive debut season in which he threw for 3,527 yards"
From Dennis:
"Chase Daniel threw for over 3,900 yards last year"
Posted: 11:23 PM   by Dennis7474
See I will readily admit I made a mistake in Chase's pass yardage, Nebraska fans can't do that.

What did Keller do last year to make you guys think he is a savior? Oh, right, he didn't play. He played 7 games in 2005, whew great. I didn't know Nebraska needed to take ASU's castoffs.

Also, never did I say that Mizzou WOULD win, I just think they could. Nebraska already has the thing sewn up and the season is still a month away from starting.

Why do I bring up 2003 and 2005, umm because that is the most recent history in which the MU-NU game was played at Faurot. If you say I can't bring up the past, don't talk about last year, fair is fair, right?

All I am saying is it isn't too far fetched for Mizzou to win the North, but you guys go ahead and keep thinking that the Fuskers couldn't possibly lose to Mizzou.
Posted: 11:26 PM   by Dennis7474
I laugh at the quote you bring up from the article "Chase Daniel, coming off an impressive debut season in which he threw for 3,527 yards"

Last year wasn't his debut, he played as a true freshman. Then again, should I really expect someone from SI to know that he played in 2005 as a true freshman?
Posted: 12:18 AM   by Huskers95
When QB's aren't the starter at the beginning of the season, they are not considered the 'Starter' for the program, especially if they have only played a hand-full of snaps because they are behind Brad Smith (like Daniel was). Eric Crouch only played about 50% of the time in 1998. Bobby Newcombe was the 'Starter' for the Huskers, even though Crouch played a decent number of downs. Still, Crouch's 'debut' wasn't until he was the Starter at the beginning of a game in the 1999 season (although I think he 'started' a game in 1998, can't be sure though)
Keller was a Heisman contender before getting injured in 2k5 and quit a program that quit on him. He is a tested, veteran QB who has proven himself in the past of being capable of greatness. THATS why we are so nuts about him: he's a Star, just like Chase Daniel, Colt McCoy, et al.
I never said Mizzou WOULD lose, only that I don't see Mizzou winning unless Nebraska blows it. I agree that the past DOES count, and I don't discount that Mizzou HAS beaten Nebraska twice in the past 4 years. Mizzou IS a much better team that IS capable of beating anyone in the Big 12 with the talent they have. However, based upon last year, and taking into account the improvements Nebraska's secondary will have made by the time it faces Mizzou in October, I don't see Daniel being able to pass any easier than he did in Lincoln last year (2 TDs, but 2 Picks also).
Also, and I am not trying to be mean here, but you guys do have a tendency to blow it in big games. The Oklahoma game was painful to watch--trust me, Nebraska fans know how it feels to watch the Sooners/Miami/FSU manage to weasel their way to a victory that was SO CLOSE to an upset. Like many of my fellow Nebraska fans, I root for North Teams when they play south teams (or Colorado, haha, feel free to dominate them all you want!). I hope you guys do have a great season and that its an undefeated Mizzou playing an undefeated Nebraska at Farout Field. Looking forward to it!
(Heck, maybe it will decide the Heisman too!)
Posted: 4:12 AM   by ReidOnTravel
Hilarious thread. Missouri is -- plain and simple --- the single greatest underachieving college football team of all time. No other real state schools to distract attention from Kansas City and St Louis metropolises. (Compare with what Neb does with Lincoln/Omaha... or Oklahoma with Tulsa/OKC and Okla State around...) I don't mean disrespect -- I like the Tiger -- but I really, um, don't respect Mizzou until they can show us something.
what i really cant understand is why missouri fans believe that their sophmore quarterback will put them over the top in a match up against the huskers, when you really look at the teams missouris best shot will be attacking the nebraska d-line which will more than likely be sub-par, while nebraskas linebackers and secondary will no doubt be some of the best in the nation while at the same time the tiger defense will have to deal with an offensive line which has finally began to show signs of cohesivness, a group of touted recievers, and several amazing rb's......and too top it off theres my boy JOE GANZ who had a superior showing to keller throughout the spring
Posted: 12:22 PM   by Douglas
I just love listening to Nebraska fans whine.

Huskers95 wrote:

The Oklahoma game was painful to watch--trust me, Nebraska fans know how it feels to watch the Sooners/Miami/FSU manage to weasel their way to a victory that was SO CLOSE to an upset.

Poor, poor nebraska. Can't be down long enough to suit me. This kind of whining from a team that once one a game because a ball bounced off some guys foot into a receiver's hands.

And correct me if I'm wrong, but the last time Miami and Nebraska played (for the National Title), Miami didn't need to weasel anything. They shelled the huskers.

Nebraska fans, remember the song title "Big Girls Don't Cry?" Learn it, love it, live it, because nobody, and I mean NOBODY, will ever feel sorry for nebraska.

(BTW, just so you know, I am not a Miami fan. I am a Tennessee fan.)
Posted: 12:43 PM   by jkorsmo
I fricking LOVE college football. Nebraska is going to win the North, hands down. They are LOADED with talent on both sides of the ball, now with Purify back for sure, this changes things even more. BCS bowl, Big 12 Championship, its our year. Sorry Mizzou, maybe next time. Just because Phil Steele says it doesnt mean its true. I will be in Columbia this year and cant wait for the hostile environment
Posted: 12:47 PM   by stljesstx
This post has been removed by the author.
Posted: 12:49 PM   by stljesstx
This post has been removed by the author.
Posted: 1:04 PM   by stljesstx
Posted: 10:35 PM by Huskers95
At least Nebraskan's have kool-aid to drink out of their Big 12 North Champion Commemorative Cups. That said...
Bringing up 2003 and 2005? I'm sorry you apparently missed the last 30 years.

So Husker95... If some other guy has been banging your wife for 2 out of the last 4 years... it's okay since she was faithful the first 26 years of your marriage?

Nebraska has been beaten soundly its last two trips to Columbia... you can count on that number increasing to three!
Posted: 1:30 PM   by william
I live in Columbia and I was at that OU game I didnt understand how a D1 program did not have a jumbo package to punch it in. Pinkel is 37-35 and I dont think I heard any rumbling to even look at Butch Davis before he got hired at UNC I believe that as long as Mizzou is competitive the alumni and fans will still be hopeful. Gotta remember before Pinkel Mizzou was a win on everybodys schedule.
Posted: 3:45 PM   by David
I think you guys are a little too worried over this. Yes, it makes for a great debate. But please, wait for them to play the game.

You can't argue that both Mizzou and Nebraska have the potential to be very good. As much as I hate Nebraska, I am very much in favor of a strong Big 12 North (after all, I am a K-State fan).

As far as Chase Daniel, you cannot argue that the guy could be really special. Someone showed the stats of Keller vs. Daniel, and no one mentioned that Daniel threw only one more interception than Keller in six more games.

Go Wildcats, Tigers, and Boilermakers!
Posted: 6:57 PM   by Kevin
I am a Mizzou grad and I believe we have the talent to win the north. The only problem is our amateur coaching staff will no doubt lose a couple games we shouldn't. So even if we do beat Nebraska,I am fully confident our inept coaching will let us down on a couple of occasions in games we our expected to win. Happens every year so why will this year be different.
Posted: 7:31 PM   by MrAesop
Thanks for admitting to the whole world you don't do you homework before picking your annual frontrunners. We can now totally disregard what you have to say.

Here's a hint. Instead of buying into all of the Keller hype, look at all of his career stats. Looking at one or two good games will not tell the entire story.

After you're done with that, tell us what Callahan's record is versus top 25 teams. (Here's another hint. It isn't pretty.)

It's hard imagining Nebraska's D line is going to be anything close to what they were last year after losing 4 starting linemen, 3? to the league.

Here's a nugget. The home team has won the last 5 games in the series, and Mizzou is the home team this year.

Sooner or later people are going to start catching on to the fact that Coach Pinkel has done more with less.
Posted: 9:14 PM   by Sirk
Who cares about Mizzou, Texas, Oklahoma, Nebraska, etc....bunch of cupcakes that can't even get close to competing against the bigboys. Later Little 12 fans lol
Finally, the first rational, reasonable comment in the entire conversation! WHO CARES about the Tiny Twelve?

Truth is, there's so much good football played throughout our glorious country, fundamentally-solid yet innovative teams like Boise State ("wait...who?" to scores of fair-weather/Saturdays-only college football fans), who happen to reside outside a "major BCS conference" like the Big 12, creep up onto the national scene.

Sure, the smaller conferences rely on gimmicky teams (see: Hawaii, in spite of a genuinely talented QB) for a slice of fame, but they also have their share of disciplined and forward-thinking programs. After all, where do most of these hyper-funded, bloated, insulated, change-resistant state schools find new coaching life? Hint: not from teams in hyper-funded, bloated, insulated, change-resistant conferences.

Oh yeah, and this critique comes courtesy of a Gator grad and fan, with our bloated conference affiliation and zillion-dollar athletics budget. Yes, the above statement is hypocritical. Get over it.
Posted: 12:44 PM   by Husker2112
Husker fans will be there just like a home game in Lincoln, Tigers are good but the Huskers are better, Here we come Tigers..
Posted: 12:53 PM   by Husker2112
Here it is you wanna be Gator fan The Big 12 has more winners with National Championships than you Gators or any one else in the sec so if are so good come play in Lincoln-Austin or anywhere or is that to far away from your MOMMY.
Posted: 12:59 PM   by Husker2112
Vols Boy remember get ripped a new one when we put poor Peyton on his A## so here it is we have 5 rings and you have?? Well you the answer to that, anyway you lose sec championship so crty all you want..
Posted: 3:46 PM   by steve
Back to the point, there isn't much difference between the overall quality of team between the Tigers and the Cornhuskers. Both teams will likely lose once to a Big XII North team on the road (KSU for the Tigers and MU for the Huskers). This gives the Tigers the tie-breaker, but I don't think they will need it. Both have a game on the road verse one of the South "big boys" which is almost a guaranteed loss. Both teams play ATM at home, but I think MU matches up slightly better verse the Aggies than NU (NU defensive front trying to stop J. Lane), and Texas Tech in Columbia will be an easier game than Oklahoma State in Lincoln. In summary, both teams are about equal, but MU will win the north because of a slightly easier schedule and a home date for the MU-NU showdown to determine the north crown.
By the way, I do remember the NU-UT game last year, and I do still feel comfortable saying NU is a long-shot to win the game this year. The game this time is in Austin, McCoy is a year older, and luck can only help you so many times. (Although most of the attention is placed on the lucky breaks Texas received at the end of the game, NU got a lot of lucky breaks throughout the game to be close enough to lose it at the end.)
Posted: 4:59 PM   by Sirk
SEC is overrated playing NO one out of conference, Big 12 hasn't done much of anything in 15 years with the exception of Texas and Oklahoma 1 a piece, Big 10 along with Notre Dame can't win a big game. Pac10 is USC and the dwarfs. ACC hasn't done jack since Miami, BC, and Vatech bolted the Big East, so that leaves the Big East that continues to win against the bigboys the last 3 seasons (usually on the road) and does not complain, bitch and moan like the other conferences do about not getting respect. The bigeast is 12-3 in bowl games in the last 3 seasons, with alot of quality wins and bcs wins and last season was 17-2 vs. other bcs conferences, enough said.
i didnt realize that missouri's defense was as good and nebraska's last year. Nebraska lost 6 starters from their defense...ALL of which are with NFL teams...someone enlighten me with all the Tiggers in the NFL from last year's pisszu defense...

enjoy your booger eating midget quarterback and your brilliant coach that advised brad smith to stay in the pocket. Brad's gone and so are your chances. enjoy watching the future NFL quarterback Keller lead us to a B12 title

good luck against Iowa State..beat them then you earn the right to talk to the big boys
Posted: 9:47 PM   by ALhuskerfan
Here's the only thing that Chase Daniels is good at.

Posted: 9:49 PM   by ALhuskerfan
Lets try this again...

Posted: 10:19 PM   by Huskers95
Sirk: "Big 12 hasn't done much of anything in 15 years with the exception of Texas and Oklahoma"
Um, 15 years ago there was no Big 12. And did you forget that in 1997 NU won the title by thumping Peyton Manning's Vols? (for that matter, NU has won THREE titles in the past 15 years and played for five...Big 12? Maybe you have a REALLY tiny short term Memory, but Oklahoma, Nebraska, or Texas has played for or won the National Title SIX TIMES in the past 10 years).

Douglas: I'm sorry that Tennessee lost to Vandy in 05 and you're still really sad, angry, and vengeful about it. That must hurt. I know you wanna take it out on someone, but seems to me the last two times NU and UT met, it wasn't at all pretty for you. Maybe you shouldn't trash talk a team that has outscored, outplayed, and outcoached the Vols for a combined total score of 73-38. If you're questioning Miami, Oklahoma, and FSU pulling out squeakers against NU, I suggest you examine the 1983 Orange Bowl, Virtually EVERY NU-OK game in the 70's and 80's, and the 1993 Orange Bowl.

stljesstx: Here's another rediculous analogy to counter yours: So if I've been banging your wife for the past 26 years and you haven't known, and you get a few good rounds in, does that mean she's done banging me? Enjoy your two wins, I have a feeling they'll have to last you for a while.
Posted: 1:09 AM   by jferr1337
their going to lose to illinois first week.

Nebraska is going to win the north.
Posted: 2:26 AM   by Parker
"Er, the Missouri - Kansas game moving from Lawrence to Kansas City is hardly a big deal. Lawrence is just a short drive from Kansas City."

Also, there is no home advantage in Lawrence... KU has a football team?
Posted: 3:14 AM   by VY
This post has been removed by the author.
Posted: 3:16 AM   by VY
Longhorns own you all. hearing you all bicker is like hearing a bunch of anorexic sorority girls arguing over who has the biggest bicep. the north division should just suit up in high heels every saturday because all they're gonna be is a prom date for the longhorns. aint that a Bee

hook em
Posted: 3:17 AM   by VY
Longhorns own you all. hearing you all bicker is like hearing a bunch of anorexic sorority girls arguing over who has the biggest bicep. the north division should just suit up in high heels every saturday because all they're gonna be is a prom date for the longhorns. aint that a Bee

hook em
Posted: 9:26 AM   by Iggy
the big12 was lucky to have koetter chase keller away to nebraska. y'all will finally see what real offense looks like. cheers.
Posted: 9:58 AM   by steve
I always find it curious how sports writers manage to apply the same circumstances to different explanations of football game outcomes. For instance, Boise State's win over Oklahoma was "gustsy play calling" while Oklahoma's win on a fake field goal and Nebraska's "kick tip" winning touchdown against Missouri was the tigers choking. The Tigers weakest point has been recruiting over the years. You have to have the players to play at a high level. That has been changing and in any case, it would be a lot more fun for all fans if all the teams were closer in talent and competitive in every game. When you have certain teams which are dominate over a period of years, you start to dislike them or root for the underdog. And it gets just plain boring unless you are a fan of that team. If we are going to nominate the same group of 10 each year, what's the point?
Posted: 12:04 PM   by Paul
Amazing, when ever there is a debate regarding NU and Mizzu, someone has to bring up the kick. We won the game is over, it was a legal catch, get over it. It is frustrating for me to see people but the question mark on the front 4. Yes, they are all being replaced, but they also played plenty of time last year behind a great starting from 4. I have no worries regarding that. If NU’s only question mark is the front line that it is going to be a great year. Just some side notes for the Mizzu fans, Keller had zero yards last year because he transferred and had to sit. Furthermore, I am tired of NU’s little brothers trying to say, “We can sit and the big kids table now” I’m sorry little guys but some one has to be at the bottom with CU. (This is to K-State and Mizzu) A couple of decent years doesn’t mean you are all grown up.
Posted: 1:46 PM   by steve
I am over it. That wasn't the point Paul. And for your information my nephew's sons name is Zac Taylor so I don't think you can accuse me of being against NU. My son did play for Mizzou, however my nephew, Zac's Dad played for OU and his brother played for Okie State. My brother played for SMU. I have a lot of loyalties, but mainly I get tired of those fans comments which are constantly one sided. My comment was directed at sportswriters in general, not you or NU fans. Maybe you should get over it.
Posted: 2:00 PM   by USCTrojan21
Who cares who wins the Big 12 North. All these teams are fighting for the right to lose to Texas or Oklahoma...
Posted: 4:20 PM   by HUSKER FAN
First, husker 95 has abused all of you haters. Paul right there with you. Steve thats great you have some many team you cheer there buddy, but were i come from thats band wagon jumping(when one of the teams you like sucks you go to the next best team) usctrojan21 i cant wait to kick your guys a$$'s right back out of BIG RED COUNTRY.
Posted: 4:23 PM   by Paul
My comments were not directed towards you at all. The kick was to Douglas above, I think the 7th or 8th post. I'm sorry if I offended you, I was directing my attention towards Mizzu fans that think they have don't something worthy of appreciation. Until they do something significant they are just NU, UT, & OU's little brother.
That being said, I have a brother who works for Mizzu.
My loyalties are in the following order:
NU - 1st
North Teams - Except CU - 2nd
Big 12 - 3rd
The rest of the NCAA - Last.
ASU - When hell freezes over, maybe.

Sorry to upset you. Let Zac know we won't forget him.
Go Big Red
Posted: 4:26 PM   by Paul
Replace don't with done, I hate auto corrections
Posted: 4:31 PM   by Magi
I have this to say to the absolute worst fans in the Big 8/Big 12--
I plan on attending all Parkway West games this year in full big red mode.. Oh, and remember when you guys claimed to be a "basketball school"?
Posted: 6:05 PM   by USCTrojan21
HUSKER FAN good job beating USC last year.
Posted: 7:29 PM   by Huskers95
USCTrojan-- See, we didn't get as good of players as you did the past couple of years because all Callahan does is let players drink and drive and beat up chicks. Pete Carroll looks the other way while players and their families accept wads of cash. Maybe if we were more like USC and we offered to play dumb when it came to paying players before they are pro, then we would get more blue chippers (it also might help if NU had an ocean, bikini clad wonder women, and semi-tropical climate). Alas, all we do is let players kick the crap out of their girlfriends, run from cops, and, of course, cow-tipping! One day though, I can see all the blue chippers coming to NU to experience the Kearney Arch FIRSTHAND!!
(Dripping with sarcasm, btw).
Best of luck in Lincoln this year, you'll never lose in a nicer place! Heck, if the score gets really shameful (even though I think it will be VEEEEEERY close), I bet almost any Husker fan would buy you a beer to console you on your loss! See you in Lincoln!
Posted: 7:39 PM   by Huskers95
One last teesy-weensy comment to VY:
You won by two points last year, on a last second, game winning field goal.
It was a hell of a game where both NU and Texas got some really lucky breaks that could have gone either way.
Don't you remember Mack Brown's comment at the end of the game?
"Best team in the North, bar none. I expect to see them again in Kansas City."
Don't you remember the PLAYER'S Comments after the game?
Aaron Ross to Bo Ruud: "We'll see ya'll in KC"
There is plenty of mutual respect between Texas and NU. We've each beaten one another for a Big 12 title. We've each won a National Title as a Big 12 team. I would hope you would show the same respect that your Coach and your Team shows for the Huskers, but maybe thats too much to ask. Yes, you do have us overwhelmingly beat in wins since the Big 12 started (you've won 6 out of 7 meetings, much like Oklahoma dominated NU in the late 70's), but I would point out that only two of those games were total demolishings, one by NU in the '99 Big 12 title game, and one by Vince Young and UT in 2003. Other than that, pretty much every game has been decided by 4 points or less. I respect UT...judging by the record, you should respect NU.
Posted: 9:29 PM   by Chris
Lol, what has the BIG12 done in the last 15 years. Has a team from the Big East won a MNC in the last 20 years?

What a tool.
Posted: 1:35 AM   by Jack
It's funny that the "Big 12" media, several premags and others pick differently than Mandel and it's THEM that has to explain there choices.

If your the lone dissenter Mandel, maybe YOU should explain your choice.
Posted: 8:36 AM   by JustWin28
Sounds like Texas every year Mandel. Each year you guys pick them and what do they have? 1 conference title under Mack Brown. OU is obviously the better TEAM, but you still pick Texas? To say Mack Brown is the better coach than Stoops right now is comical and ignorant. Nebraska or Mizzou? It doesn't matter who the sacrificial lamb is for Oklahoma.
I for one am glad to see that the Huskers are not the favorite to win the north and even more so that Mizzou is, we have been trounced the last 2 trips to Columbia and maybe this will put the fire in BIG RED's belly to go out and dominate them this year. NU has a fairly difficult schedule: USC at Wake Forrest (defending ACC champs) and any team can win a game in the Big 12.

Posted: 5:50 PM   by Steven
I'm an Okie State alum/fan. I love the big 12. We all know its folly to debate who is going to win until the season gets going. I watched OSU beat NU last year, and sat close enough to coach Blake to let him know we wish he still coached in Norman. OSU chokes as much as MU does. If anyone besides NU wins the big 12 north, they'll still get beat down by whoever wins the south.

how can u say OU is obviously better than Texas? OU has a new QB, which of whom nobody knows anything about. he could be a huge bust. QB carries the team man. of course nobody is gonna pick OU when comparing Texas' Colt McCoy to OU's nobody in the most important position.
Posted: 10:39 PM   by Ben
Missouri will NOT win the north and Nebraska will LOSE to the winner of the Red River Shootout in the championship. Missouri will never achieve ANYTHING with their loser coach calling the shots. Nebraska should be pretty good but I don't see them returning to powerhouse status anytime soon.
Posted: 12:23 AM   by Ted

As an OU fan, I totally agree with you. Although McCoy looked average against OU last year(108 yds passing), he looked very good for most of the season. Hopefully OU will be less turnover prone this year, but it's part of the game and the best team will end up on top. Unless the new QB, whoever it's going to be, is a total bust, OU should be no worse than last year.
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