Monday, June 19, 2006

Missouri: The Show Me How to Lose State

One of college football's great mysteries is the inability of Missouri to field a consistent winner. With talent-rich Kansas City and St. Louis in the neighborhood, big boosters and a showcase conference in the Big 12, the Tigers would appear to be can't-miss material. And if you take into account some of the coaching talent to pass through Mizzou, then you really begin to wonder. Dave Matter of the Columbia Daily Tribune has a terrific piece on the Tigers of Bob Stull, who was Missouri's coach from 1989-93. Stull came from Texas El Paso, which was described by former assistant Dirk Koetter as "the armpit of college football." Stull, with the help of Koetter, now the coach at Arizona State, and a young offensive line coach by the name of Andy Reid, now the coach of the Philadelphia Eagles, had resuscitated the Miners' program, so why couldn't they do the same at Missouri? But the Tigers under Stull were spectacular losers, suffering defeats by 40 points or more 10 times, including a 73-0 collapse in 1993 at Texas A&M. The turning point — if there is such a thing during Stull's 15-38-2 tenure — came in 1990. The Tigers were 2-2 and high-flying Colorado came to Faurot Field. In what is known at the "Fifth Down" game, the Buffaloes were given an extra down to score the winning touchdown. Colorado went on to win the national championship; Missouri finished 4-7. "That game took a lot out of us," Koetter said. "We never really got it back on track." Stull, pictured above, eventually recovered. He's now the athletic director at Texas El Paso.

1 comment:

SEC I2esource said...

I agree with all that you are saying. I too have been waiting for that program to take off with the descent talent they always have.