Mizzou Mess by Bob Ryan

“The times…they are a changing”….they sure are! Mizzou’s sports leadership team has been rocked …again…by the unexpected, sudden departure of Mack Rhoades. Let’s take a look at this deal….

 

…Rhoades….it appeared… was a terrific fundraiser. He seems to have the ability to “touch” the big…really big donors. He was good with words, promised transparency… seemed to have a “vision”, young, had perfected the PC language…claimed to have a long range plan which usually means it involved adding new facilities.. so what happened in these 15 months?

 

What we’ve seen of Rhoades is an entirely different picture. It shows us a leader who had just 2 press conferences…saw the two men that hired him lose their jobs…sided gently with Pinkel’s protest but left himself an “out” by his phrasing so that he could take the other side when it came to pushing out Pinkel. That protest..supported by Mack the Knife… has already caused rippling effects on enrollment, image of the school, recruiting that may last for some time. Rhoades then created a position for Pinkel so as to make it appear that they still valued Gary Pinkel. He flip-flopped on Head Baseball Coach Tim Jamieson as he gave him an extension…only to push him out of his baseball job less than a year later and create a new administrative job for him. Instead of listening to the softball players about small grievances and working it out with the highly successful Coach, Earlywine…he handed it off to others and the issue grew way out of proportion. Then the softball team wanted to throw away the problem…which they no longer could do. The hiring of Barry Odum made sense but as you note….other SEC schools hire very experienced, veteran coaches to take over their programs (Kirby Smart @ Georgia, Will Muschamp @ Florida). Maybe Odum will be good, very good but his short tenure @ Memphis doesn’t exactly seem like he’s the best shining knight coming to the rescue of a program in turmoil. But.. maybe he will…let’s hope so. The Pinkel athletic building extension on campus has been shelved.

 

I think Rhoades was NOT a good intra-personal person….yes he could talk to raise money but he couldn’t talk with his coaches, administrative team (17 full-time people work in the Mizzou AD dept..wow!). He seemed to put his thumb up in the air to see which way the wind was blowing when making his decisions as he flip-flopped on key decisions. He’s not a problem solver…he’s a PR guy. Apparently, he’d been “looking around” the country for other openings the past few months. He had NO intentions of staying long-term @ Mizzou. He’s one of these guys who always sees real green grass elsewhere. His disingenuous departing statement about leaving for a school with a Christian attitude is almost laughable. Baylor.. Baylor…the Poster Boy of college abuse of undisciplined football players raping girls causing…. justifiably…the firing of Head Football Coach Art Briles . If you haven’t figured it out…the Head Football Coach is now the most important man on campus…forget about the President of the School…he’s there for graduation ceremonies. Good riddance to the Mack Rhoades tenure..time to move forward with a true leader.

 

I think Mizzou will be better off without down-the-Rhoades. Surely there has to be one person on that extended Mizzou athletic staff that is trained, familiar with short term and long time attitudes @ Mizzou and really loves Mizzou. A person who is willing to talk to people without cameras being there as slick sounding statements are spouted. This doesn’t mean that we have given up our goals of winning teams. It means that Mizzou will do it the ol’-fashioned way….hard work, diligence, stability, honesty, and have a leader at the top…not a great PR guy who’s looking to get outta Dodge for the next “great” place.

 

TRENDING UP….

….Aledmys Diaz play in the last 3 weeks has the Card fans smiling….after a rugged start, he’s hitting for average & power, fielding better, hustling on the bases..the last time we hyped a young SS this much was Gary Templeton….boy….hope that Diaz doesn’t go down that trail.. maybe he hasn’t learned some of those raunchy American gestures yetJ

…Georgia Bulldogs are hoping that their new coach lives up to his last name…they hired Kirby Smart ….he was the top ast coach@ Bama the last couple years

….Josh Donaldson has been red-hot in the last 30 days…hitting .411, OBP .526, SLG .776 and 1,302 for OPS….he’s the “main man” for the Bluejays potent offense

…newest names in the race for the HR crown are Adam Duvall(Cin)-23, Trevor Story(Col)-21, Jake Lamb (AZ)-20…overall MLB leader is Mark Trumbo(Balt)-28

….In the miracle of Philly…maybe it’s all their fan love… Peter Bourjas is hitting .274 after banging out a .409 average in the last 30 days? Is this an imposter?

…Carlos Martinez has clearly been the ace of the 1st half for the Birds…plus he throws a mean cup of water ..good velocity & accuracy…on each Cardinal HR

…in the “if u can’t beat them, join em” Kevin Durant bolts OKC for Golden State. The Warriors already had the “splash brothers”—Stephen Curry and Draymond Green…they are hoping now to have the inside presence to deal with LeBron

…Ichiro Suzuki needs only 10 more hits to achieve the 3000 mark….really amazing when you consider that he was 27 years old before his 1st MLB At Bat ! He’s 42 years old now and still hitting .335…not bad, heh?..that’s my hockey accent

…big time College Football coaches just keep seeing their salary rise…this year there are two coaches receiving over $7mil—Nick Saban & Jim Harbaugh..of course Bama is rated #4 in expected income for this year @ 153.2mil while Michigan is #3 @ 157.9mi ..who’s #2 & #1 in expected income–#2 is Texas @ 161mil and #1 is Oregon 196mil with a whopping 124mil in donations…mostly from Nike and founder Phil Knight

…Jeff Gyorko has been much better than expected….his bat has been productive.. and his field has been adequate…but boy..the other day he made a diving catch of a throw @ 1B…it reminded me of my whale watching cruise last year in Alaska…I’m just saying

 

NOT TRENDING….JUST TREADING WATER…

…no “expert” wanted to do it because it doesn’t grab any headlines…but they can’t pick any one else to win the SEC other than Alabama in football

…noble Kim Anderson, a fine coach and an even better man, waits as he mounts the steps towards the guillotine …only a miracle …or .500 season…can save him

…Matt Adams doesn’t seem to gain any traction…always in a day/two then “resting”…come on he has all winter to rest…let him play vs right & left handers

 

TRENDING DOWN….

….since his return Jhonny Peralta is hitting .205….some have speculated that his thumb ..that was re-injured…is really hurting his swing…and batting production

…ya know…ya can’t steal 1B…Billy Hamilton’s .162 average in last 30 days makes it tough for him to steal any bases…about all he can “steal” are the quick trips to the water cooler J

…Steven Jackson’s release from Atlanta probably spells the end of his career

…Looks like Carlos Martinez’s barber went to sleep half way through the cut J

…some in Boston are already questioning the Bruins signing of David Backus…where does he fit into the Boston plans, schemes and salary schedule has some scratching their helmets

…national forecasters…not me….are predicting Mizzou football for a 4 or 5 win season…I have to see a game or two prior to making up my mind

…”Whiff”le-ball kings of 1st half….Chris Davis (Balt)-122, Mike Napoli (Clev)-119, Trevor Story (Col)-114…man that’s a lotta whiffs for half a season…that’s almost as often as I struck out in our whiffle ball gamesJ …I remember StL fans clamoring for Davis last winter….for some reason….I don’t hear those calls anymore ?

…Byung Ho Park was expected to provide punch & power for the Twins when they signed him last winter….not so much…he was sent to AAA with a .191 avg last week..he does have a good 29% of his hits are HR…but he only has 41 hits…thus 12 HR…

…Sheldon Richardson just continues to end up in problems with the law…he better stay very good on the field because as soon as he becomes mediocre…he’s out the door

…Ryan Howard @ .154…come on….release him…save him any more agony of having to come to the park …he is 36 years of age…he’s had his day….but …it’s gone…and so should he be

…Trevor Rosenthal is really struggling…ya can’t send a 3 year vet back to the minors…let’s hope that he finds the strike zone soon before he becomes the Seth Maness of the staff.

….trending down has now hit rock bottom…the end

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