Ten Thoughts for Monday Morning
1) Well, 2020 doesn't have the monopoly on weird weeks in the sports world. Missouri's game on Saturday night was postponed and the Tigers' game tomorrow night is already off. I spoke to someone who feels good about the chances of the Tigers getting back on the court at Texas A&M Saturday and missing only two games. If that's the case, the schedule becomes pretty simple. You play those two games the week before the SEC Tournament and you're whole again, which is why it is important that the SEC was nimble enough to have LSU and Vanderbilt play other teams on the days these games were eventually scheduled. The problem, of course, becomes what happens if more games Missouri is involved in (whether it's the Tigers' fault or not) are postponed. Then you start getting into having an uneven number of games across the league.
It is important to point out, though, that no league has handled this better and adapted more quickly than the SEC. They got 69 of 71 football games in and they've switched things on the fly multiple times in hoops already. I don't know if Mizzou is going to get all 18 in...but they're in a conference that has shown it's going to do everything in its power to try.
2) As far as the actual team, the only thing that has happened since the last time I wrote this feature is a complete and utter collapse at Mississippi State (insert your joke about how the team caught COVID at halftime here and join the other 150 people who have done so who thought they were being original). Last night during the Browns/Steelers game, Cris Collinsworth said something that stuck with me and that is applicable to Mizzou hoops: "I don't know how to explain momentum, but you can feel it." And it's not just something felt by fans. Players feel it too. When things start going poorly (or well), it spreads throughout the team. Players on both sides start to believe things are going to happen. Then they happen. Often times, it only takes one play to switch momentum. But it's definitely a real thing.
For Mizzou in that game, the disappointing part is that I thought the momentum made Mizzou panic. They fell behind by three and then Dru Smith committed an awful foul and then I thought Missouri started acting like it had to make up a six point deficit in a single possession. It didn't happen. And the reason that's concerning is that the strength of this team, what is supposed to set it apart, is the experience and the fact that it's full of veterans. It didn't help in Starkville. Missouri played like a team that didn't know how to react to being punched in the face.
3) That said, I don't want to put TOO much on that loss.
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