After letting Missouri’s Texas Bowl announcement sink in for a couple of days, I’m not quite as upset as I thought I would be. When news started to leak that the Insight Bowl was considering Iowa State, I was definitely among the many cursing the Big 12’s bowl procedure (Iowa freakin’ State?!?!?). Then I started to think about it, and I’m not sure the Texas Bowl isn’t a better landing spot for this year’s Tiger team. Consider the following:
- It’s in Texas (duh…), in the heart of Big 12 country, where Mizzou has recently gained a foothold in recruiting. Now, they’ll never be able to seriously battle UT or even A&M/Tech for the real blue-chippers, but even the unheralded recruits have talent (see: Weatherspoon, Sean; Alexander, Danario; Daniel, Chase- the list goes on and on) and there’s no reason Gary Pinkel can’t get a piece of the pie. Bowl practices are open to local recruits, so this is a great opportunity to show the program off to Houston’s finest.
- Mizzou has 33 players on their current roster from the state of Texas, including seven from Houston. Going home is always fun. Sure, a trip to Arizona would have been fun, but the players should get a chance to see their friends, play in front of their families, and hopefully be in such a good mood that they wipe the floor with Navy.
- Raise your hand if you have the NFL Network. OK, now raise your hand if you actually care… Anyone? Bueller? The more ‘high-profile’ Insight Bowl will be watched by exactly 12 people on the NFL Network, while the Texas Bowl is on ESPN. Which I hear is a pretty good.
- I was about as excited to watch a 6-6 Minnesota team as I was to give Mark Mangino a sponge bath. Navy went 8-4, beat Notre Dame (yes, they also lost to Temple, but we’re going to ignore that for now), run a cool offense and are fairly well known across the country. And excuse me for not wanting to subject myself to watching Big 10 football.
- Finally, this is the third year in a row Mizzou has been ‘snubbed’ in the bowl process, which leads to lots of moaning and groaning from Tiger fans. And there’s nothing we like more than moaning. And groaning.
And if all that doesn’t make you feel any better, take heart in knowing that kU fans don’t even get to have this conversation. Because they’re rubbish.