While this blog primarily focuses on Tulsa basketball teams, I am a St. Louisian and therefore am somewhat sympathetic to the plights of SLU and Mizzou basketball. Well, maybe not the latter. It is extremely difficult to root for a major basketball program, especially one as corrupt and mean-spirited as the Missouri Tigers. Whether it's allowing players out of jail to ride an ATV at the university's president's house or naming its basketball arena after a Paris Hilton-esque heiress or chastising beat reporters for having the audacity to call its egomanical coahc by his first name, there is a lot not to like about Mizzou. And don't get me started on their football program. But despite all the negative aspects surrounding the chronically underachieving Tigers, I still follow them as they are my Dad's favorite team. He deserves better as do the tens of thousands of fans and students who pay an arm and a leg just to be disappointed again and again.
Well, tonight Mizzou kicks off its exhibition season by playing that perennial favorite Bemidji St. When the NCAA announced that D1 teams would have to play other NCAA teams from lower divisions instead AAU teams just so happen to be coached by fathers or coaches of hearlded recruits, I thought it was a great idea mainly because I thought it would be neat to see the big boys play the D2 teams that often wind up in their shadows. SLU is living up to this by playing fellow locals UMSL and Maryville while ORU and TU both filled up their 2 exhibition slots with fellow Okie schools. While Mizzou is playing Missouri Southern next week, they are starting off with Bemidji St., who are obviously from Bemidji St. Why Mizzou couldn't schedule Central Missouri St., Truman St., Northwest Missouri St., Missouri-Rolla, or a host of other state schools, I'll never know. Could it be that Mizzou could perhaps lose to one or more of the preceding schools? Of course not. Not a Mizzou team that has lost recent home contests to such powerhouses as Belmont and Davidson.
Why Quin Snyder still is the coach of Mizzou, I'll never know. While 2 straight NIT appearances would guarantee the job of Bemidji State's coach, I don't see how a program which used to have such high expectations now has settled for incredible mediocrity.
I'll whine more about this later
-I picked up my free student ticket to TU's exhibition game Saturday against Southeast Oklahoma State. I wasn't shocked when I was told by a guy in the TU ticket office that I was the first student to pick up a ticket. Even during my Freshman year when we were a top 25 team, exhibition games were never well attended. Now that Tu's fanbase is at its worse in a decade, there's no reason for TU students to pick up their tickets ahead of time. I picked mine up early (even though I probably won't be able to go) because I'm weird.
You'll probably be able to count the number of students who attend the game Saturday which is sad. I remember 3 years ago, when there were flyers that stated that TU basketball tickets were only guaranteed to students a week before tip-off and TU students could pick them up as early as 3 weeks ahead of time. Now a student requesting a ticket to the opener against Stephen F. Austin in 17 days would likely be given a quizzical look by the gentleman working the ticket office.
There was a letter to the editor by 2 students who announced that they are in the process of reviving the Reynolds Rowdies. They seem to be somewhat well-organized and will probably have a lot of students wearing matching tie-dyed shirts against OU but until the same group of people shows up to cheer at a meaningless late Feb. matchup against SMU, I'll remain unconvinced. Until TU is consistently successful and its atheltic department starts giving a damn about its fans, TU's fair-weather students won't show up on a consistent basis. But I hope I'm wrong.