PowerMizzou - Blowin' Smoke Presented by Weston Tobacco
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Blowin' Smoke Presented by Weston Tobacco


What's more fun than us giving you a chance to mock us every single week? In our new feature, Blowin' Smoke presented by Weston Tobacco, we will do that each and every Thursday. Gabe DeArmond and Mitchell Forde will make five predictions almost sure to go wrong every week in this space. These will range from big games to big picture predictions with a bit of the comedic and absurd mixed in most weeks as well.

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1) A third of the way through, give me your revised top four teams in the SEC at the end of the season.

Mitchell: Alabama, Tennessee, LSU, Missouri. I feel very good about the first two, decent about LSU and would legitimately consider four different teams aside from the three I mentioned already for the fourth spot right now. But I do think Missouri has done enough to show us that the Tennessee and Mississippi State losses were much more the exception than the rule for this team, so they get the edge.

Gabe: Alabama, LSU and Tennessee I agree with. The fourth spot is between Florida and Mizzou for me. Given that the game between those two is in Gainesville, I'll go with Florida on a tiebreaker over the Tigers with the two teams playing in the SEC quarterfinals.

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2) Weekly check in: What's your predicted NCAA Tournament seed for Mizzou?

Gabe: I had them as a six a week ago. I actually think they can play themselves into a five and maybe even a four. I'll stick with five for now.

Mitchell: I'll bump them up one line from the last time we discussed this and go with a six seed.

3) Who ends the season as Missouri's leading scorer?

Mitchell: I know he's been brutal in the past two games, but I'm going to stick with Xavier Pinson. He still leads the team at the moment at 12.9 points per game and his scoring ceiling is the highest on the team without a doubt. He could very well have a 30-point game or two down the stretch, and I think he's the only player on Missouri's roster who is capable of that. I wouldn't be at all surprised if it winds up being Jeremiah Tilmon, though I still think he's due for a couple games at some point where he gets into early foul trouble and disappears.

Gabe: Pinson is probably the safe pick. But I think more and more teams are going to surround Tilmon every time he touches the ball and open up some looks from outside. The most capable guy of hitting those shots is Mark Smith. Smith is only 1.3 points per game behind Pinson for the team lead right now. If he can average 14 or 15 the rest of the way, I think he ends up as the leading scorer. And he's capable of 25 on a few nights too.

4) Will Jeremiah Tilmon make the all-SEC first team?

Mitchell: Man, this is a tough one. First of all, I assume we're talking about the media's all-SEC team, because for some reason the coaches pick like eight players onto each team, which makes no sense for me because you can't play basketball with eight guys at a time. The media picks five for each team, as it should be. And if that's the case, no, I'm not ready to put Tilmon there yet, although I think he's close. Tilmon is currently fifth in the SEC in rebounding, second in field goal percentage ... but just 20th in scoring. That's always going to be the first stat most voters look at. Now, he'd be far higher if you just look at conference-only numbers, and he certainly has a chance to rise if he continues to play like he has lately, which I hope he does. But as of right now, I'd put Cameron Thomas, Scottie Pippen Jr., Sharife Cooper, Herb Jones and Trendon Watford on the first team.

Gabe: Assuming he continues to play anywhere near the way he's been playing, I think he's an easy pick for first team. The actual question to me is whether he could be the SEC player of the Year. Alabama definitely has something to say about that and Yves Pons or Cameron Thomas or Trendon Watford from LSU could have something to say about that. But I think Tilmon makes the first team.

5) This weekend's NFL playoff picks with no hedging on if Mahomes plays or not. That can factor into the prediction, but no changing the prediction based on if he plays.

Gabe: Tampa Bay (+3.5) at Green Bay: The Packers look borderline unstoppable. As a fan of another team still alive, I wish Green Bay wouldn't have pissed off Aaron Rodgers by drafting a quarterback because when he has something to prove, look out. And he has something to prove against Tampa. Pack wins by two scores.

Buffalo (+2.5) at Kansas City: I think Mahomes is playing. And I think he is winning. Buffalo was helpless defensively against the Chiefs in the regular season. That game should have been more lopsided than it was. I don't think it's a blowout, but I think the Chiefs win.

Mitchell: Tampa Bay (+3.5) at Green Bay: Green Bay has really looked impressive the past few times I've watched them. And while what Tom Brady is doing at his age is ridiculous, the best quarterback the Bucs have faced during their first two playoff games has been Taylor Heinicke (sorry Drew Brees, you had an awesome career, but Sunday night was tough to watch). Now they get the MVP. Aaron Rodgers knows he needs to finish off this season with a Super Bowl appearance for his legacy. He and the Pack get it done by six.

Buffalo (+2.5) at Kansas City: First off, no way Mahomes misses this game. The question in my mind is whether he's limited by the foot/ankle/toe deal that had him limping around on Sunday. Because his legs have actually been a big weapon in playoff games. Either way, I think this is going to be a really good game, but I just trust Mahomes a bit more than I trust Josh Allen right now to make the winning plays down the stretch. Chiefs by a field goal.

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