Homecoming is finally about to be upon us. For many organizations around campus, the fruits of their labor are finally about to be on display this weekend during the Homecoming Parade. Floats will be driven, and accompanied by the members of the organizations that helped to build them over the course of the semester. It is an exciting time to be on campus, as many alumni come back to witness the festivities and go to the big game. But this year, the game is not so big. In fact, it is rather quite small.
This year for Homecoming, Mizzou plays the Middle Tennessee Blue Raiders. Middle Tennessee plays in the C-USA Conference, which is a middling FBS conference. Not exactly what you may have been expecting, huh? Compare Middle Tennessee to the opponents in previous years, such as Florida, Vanderbilt, or South Carolina and there is a clear difference. So why is this year’s game against a middling team in a middling conference, when in previous years Mizzou had played SEC teams?
To me, the answer is simple. It is easy to see that Mizzou is much worse than in years past, and last years disaster of a Homecoming game against Florida proved that especially. That was the start of a three game streak where the offense could not score a single touchdown, a true feat of awe-inspiring incapability. Since Homecoming is noted especially for the amount of alumni that return to their alma matter, the decision on who to schedule was already made. Schedule the easier opponent, pick up a win, make everybody happy.
There are so many things going wrong with the football team right now that it is sad. The offense has become anemic again, managing just three touchdowns in the last two games. Two of those touchdowns came in garbage time, so really the offense has managed to score one touchdown in meaningful game time. That is just a sad, sad reality for a team that was so dynamic just two years ago. But Drew Lock has struggled greatly, and Marvin Zanders looked much better at the end of the Florida game than Lock ever did. While that came during garbage time as well, the 99 yard drive Zanders led was impressive, and I believe Barry Odom should experiment using him more. At this point, it can not get much worse for a program that once helped prop up a weak SEC East.