Five topics from columnist Ben Frederickson that St. Louis sports fans should be discussing:
1. Can the Tigers win seven?
Mizzou football opened fall camp this week with a projected win total of 6.5. That’s the opinion of Las Vegas, which is too pessimistic for the Tigers, and too optimistic for the SEC media, who have convinced themselves second-year coach Barry Odom is as good as gone.
I think Vegas picked the perfect number.
I know it because trying to decide if the Tigers will be north or south of 6.5 leads to healthy debate.
The offense has too much potential. These guys now know Odom’s system.
On the other hand, a once-proud defense dissolved last year. Key positions on that side of the ball still lack proven leaders.
Something that has not appeared in this discussion often enough? The schedule. It’s arguably the easiest in the SEC. And it’s a significant reason Odom needs to hit the over and go bowling this year. Because if he can’t do it with this slate, when can he?
Missouri State went 4-7 and 2-6 in the Missouri Valley Football Conference last season. Purdue finished 3-9 and 1-8 in the Big Ten, and will be operating under a new coach in Jeff Brohm. Connecticut went 3-9 and 1-7 in the American Athletic, and also welcomes a new coach in Randy Edsall, though he coached there before.
Idaho appears to be the toughest non-conference opponent. Let that sentence sink in. The Vandals finished 9-4 and 6-2 in the Sun Belt, and beat Colorado State in the Famous Idaho Potato Bowl. Fifth-year coach Paul Petrino is coming off his best campaign…
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