So far, the Missouri Tigers are projected to win their first two games of the 2018 football season. In 2017, Mizzou’s first quarter began with a bang, but fizzled out in the next two games.
Rightfully, fans were expecting a little more from the Tigers, even if those hopes were tempered with the reality of a head coach with little experience, and on the outset of the season, with seemingly little direction.
After the Tigers’ fifth consecutive loss of the season, head coach Barry Odom lit a fire – literally – and the team subsequently found itself. This year, hopefully, such dramatics won’t be required to fuel the team’s desire to win.
After a successful first quarter, the Tigers begin conference play. This year, the conference is just as strong, but Missouri may benefit from a few teams learning new systems under new coaches. Nonetheless, even those teams can’t be considered “out.”
Missouri Tigers Football
September 22, 2018, vs. Georgia
In 2017, the Tigers played inspired football during the first half against the Georgia Bulldogs. After halftime, Mizzou’s inspiration fizzled, but not before making one more touchdown.
This year’s contest with Georgia has the potential to be a little closer, if the defense plays a complete game, and if newly-minted offensive coordinator Derek Dooley finds the right combination to go against the ‘Dawgs D.
Last year, we really had no idea who was calling the offensive set at any given time, but for the most part, it seemed the calls were coming from Odom. Hopefully this year, Odom will feel more confident in giving his offensive coordinator more control over play-calling.
Despite the promises of a much improved offense, a third-year signal caller in senior quarterback Drew Lock, I don’t think this will be the year that Missouri outplays Georgia. I think the game will be closer than last year, but only by a touchdown or two.
October 6, 2018, at South Carolina
The Tigers struggled mightily against the Gamecocks in 2017. Once South Carolina found the Tigers’ many weaknesses, it was “game on” for Carolina.
This year, Missouri looks a little more stable, and as long as the dust has settled on the sideline, and the Tigers are better prepared to execute on both sides of the ball, this should be a fun game to watch this time around.
There aren’t many bright spots for the Tigers in the second quarter of their season, but with some determination, and a little spit and grit, Mizzou can compete with South Carolina and pull off a win.
October 13, 2018, at Alabama
I mean – it’s Alabama. The runners-up for the National Championship in 2017, and the odds-on favorite to win the “‘Natty” in 2018, there are few teams that can compete with the Crimson Tide. Missouri is not one of them.
The schedule did Mizzou no favors by putting ‘Bama on the calendar. Really, it doesn’t matter where these two teams play. There’s no “fun” place or way to lose, but on the road seems to sting more, because at least for the team, the loss sits and stings the entire trip back.
I’d love to see the Tigers pull off an upset, but I don’t even think my wildest dreams could conjure up such imagery.
Missouri will finish its first half of the season on a 3-3 split, admittedly better than its 1-5 stinker to start 2017.