Show Me: Missouri’s Improbable Ride to the Top of the SEC East
Missouri is known as the “show me” state and the Tigers are certainly living up to that billing. Riding an unprecedented wave of success, the Columbia Cats have clawed their way to the top of the SEC East food chain. Running out to an undefeated streak early in the season, the Tigers were expected to limp out of Georgia a couple weeks ago like scared kitty cats. Missouri did something very few teams have done and spanked the injury-riddled dogs in their own pound.
Still, very few pundits, including this one, gave the Tigers a fighting chance to continue their charge. Florida was to travel to Columbia and once and for all show the former Big-12 school that has been mired in mediocrity for untold years what the SEC elite were truly about.
Whether Florida is not very good or Missouri played lights-out is still up for debate. What wasn’t a debate was the domination of a Tigers team that riddled the vaunted Gator defense with a backup freshman quarterback and an absolute destruction of Gator nation on the plains last week.
Missouri has served notice and can essentially lock up the SEC East with a victory over the Old Ball Coach Steve Spurrier and his fighting roosters of South Carolina at home on Saturday. The Tigers have earned respect the old-fashioned way and have won their way into the BCS discussion and the nation’s elite.
I don’t see South Carolina slowing down this tank of Tigers and it may be December before a thundering pack of Elephants and Alabama before this group of Tigers hits a wall. For Gary Pinkel and the Missouri Tigers, they are certainly showing they belong amongst the SEC and thus the nation’s elite this season. How far they will go is anyone’s guess. I, for one, have stopped betting against the Tigers — at least for now.
Terry Waldrop was a long-time college basketball coach and AD. He also is a writer for RantSports.com and sports radio host on www.espn977.com. Follow him on Twitter @terrywaldrop, “Like” him on Facebook or add him to your network on Google for one of a kind