This was a year of failure and regression. So, you ask, what of the spoiler role? When teams are in situations such as Mizzou’s, the spoiler role is something important to relish. It is a display of pride as well as a glimpse at what might have been. Spoilers can settle old scores and embrace a little Schadenfreude. I say, hail to the spoiler. And what a week to get spoiling!
Missouri heads to Neyland Stadium this weekend to face the Tennessee Volunteers. Followers of the Mizzodcast will be no strangers to the animosity we have for this team. We have been screaming from the rooftops for two years about how this Tennessee squad has given no indication that they are a title-contending team, yet the media continued to pronounce them the reincarnated 1972 Dolphins.
We’ve pulled our hair out as the media has embraced this flawed team with a flawed coach and a flawed alien quarterback, while our Tigers are repeatedly ignored as afterthoughts. This righteous indignation was tempered somewhat by us living up to those afterthought expectations, but I digress.
Missouri has a chance to accomplish a couple of big goals. If we can somehow, some way pull of an upset on Saturday, we will jam it in the eye of arrogant SEC prognosticators who have fawned over Tennessee for two years. We will jam it in the eye of those same talking heads that view our team as some kind of FCS directional school dog. Most importantly, if we win on Saturday, we will crush Butch Jones and his bloated head and his anachronistic flat-top haircut.
It will be a thing of glory, and it gives me reason to hope. This is also a chance to develop our young guns. As this turd sandwich of a season has progressed, a page has been turned on personnel. While we have a pretty veteran defensive crew, nearly every skill position on offense is filled with a freshman or sophomore… and a good one! This is led the way by newly-minted team star, Damarea Crockett, and the talented but puzzling Drew Lock.
We also have the opportunity to see what the re-booted old/new scheme on defense can do. We set the dogs loose the last two weeks and it’s working. While the defense still gives up big yards, they are now also making big plays. Tennessee has shown an affinity for blowing opportunities as well.
Look, Missouri is a 15-point underdog in this game. The Tigers will very likely lose. But the fact remains, that we’re not facing the 1972 Dolphins. We’re facing a garbage team with a garbage coach with garbage arrogant fans. They know how to choke, and if we oblige them in that tendency, oh how glorious it will be. The grapes will be soooo sour. IF this somehow happens, be ready for a two-hour special show that is just us drinking the salty tears of clueless Vol fans. Go Tigers!