Missouri: Tigers expect ‘electric atmosphere’ for Georgia in ‘The Zoo’

HOOVER, Ala. — Missouri coach Gary Pinkel’s message at SEC Football Media Days was pretty similar to the one delivered by Texas A&M coach Kevin Sumlin a couple of hours earlier. That is, the Tigers aren’t intimidated about now having to play eight SEC opponents versus Big 12 opponents.

“I’d be real disappointed if we were intimidated,” said Pinkel, who has coached Missouri for the past 11 seasons. “We played in a pretty good league ourselves. We understand how it works. Everybody’s wondering how Missouri is going to do in the SEC. Everybody’s going to be analyzing us. That’s going to be the case every week we play. …

“We’re new. We have to prove ourselves and earn respect, and that’s what we’re going to work hard to do.”

The Tigers have proven they can succeed on a high level. They’ve won double-digit games three times under Pinkel, including a 12-2 mark in 2007 when they were in the BCS discussion until late in the season.

Missouri is used to going up against Texas, Texas A&M and Oklahoma the other Big 12 heavyweights. That has prepared the Tigers well for taking on the likes of Georgia, against which they’ll open their SEC slate on Sept. 8 in Columbia. They play Southeastern Louisiana in Week 1.

“It’s big,” Pinkel said of facing the Bulldogs early. “Normally you never talk about any game but your first game, ever. But understand historically for the University of Missouri it’s going to be a big game, the first SEC game the first SEC home game.”

Franklin said the Bullodogs are going to encounter an “electric atmosphere.”

“We call our place [Memorial Stadium] ‘The Zou,” Pinkel said. “It’s a great place to play college football. . . . I think the Georgai game will bring a whole new dimension to that. To say our fans are excited about being in the SEC, that’d be an understatement. They’re fanatical about it.”

One question facing the Tigers heading into the season is the health of their talented quarterback James Franklin. Franklin, who had 3,846 yards of total offense this past season, had to have shoulder surgery on his right, throwing shoulder after spring practice.

“James Franklin is doing well,” Pinkel said. “Without question, we expect him to be 100 percent. The trainer told us that two weeks ago. It will be interesting to see in August how he’s throwing accuracy wise as he’s throwing over and over.”

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30 comments Add your comment

italian_29

July 17th, 2012
6:29 pm

First SEC LOSS for Miss

italian_29

July 17th, 2012
6:29 pm

Across the wide Missouri

July 17th, 2012
6:32 pm

Missouri 37, Georgia 17

Bucky Badger

July 17th, 2012
6:42 pm

Mizzou at the “Zou”! Missouri 31. Georgia 27

AlathamaDawg

July 17th, 2012
6:48 pm

Go Mizzou! The beginning of the end for that unproductive staff currently in Athens.

True ATL Fan

July 17th, 2012
6:48 pm

This game eerily reminds me of the Boise State game last year and the Hawaii game of 07-08. The entire state was so hungry to play in that game…only to allow the emotions of the atmosphere to overcome the boys. Georgia will walk into the Missouri game expecting to win. Those lumps they took at the beginning of last year will serve as a reminder for UGA and a lesson for the “Zou” (lol). Missouri – you’re growing up, but you’re not grown. Worry about that gimp QB of yours because SacManJones will eat up all night.

AlathamaDawg

July 17th, 2012
6:49 pm

Really, Georgia is no different than playing Kansas State.

Spell Check

July 17th, 2012
6:51 pm

“We call our place [Memorial Stadium] ‘The Zou,” Pinkel said. “It’s a great place to play college football. . . . I think the Georgai game will bring a whole new dimension to that.

Great proofreading skills Chip. I’ll let “the Zou” pass because they’re also called mizZOU, but Georgai? come on man, you’re better than that.

AlathamaDawg

July 17th, 2012
6:51 pm

Remember, the last two Big 12 teams UGA played on the road? Colorado (Big 12 at the time) and OK State. Lost them both.

Mark Richt

July 17th, 2012
7:01 pm

i will show all u alabama punks…. i will call the game and send Bobo for popcorn! I dissmiss crowell so u guys could rehab him… go dawgs

Mark Richt

July 17th, 2012
7:09 pm

I really cant help it… Cant stop all my boyz from parting and smokin spliff…. I try to run it clean.. They just keep on disappointing me… doesnt Alabama teach all there new players how to Roll the green tide.. lol… Athens has 15 cops per 2 athletes here… Alabama has 1 cop for all the city… It just isnt fair… Spurrier what do u say about that.. Keep complaining .. I suspend them twice and their gone.. How many times u suspend Garcia and played him???? Nick Saban has the 1 cop on pay roll… lol

glacialspeed

July 17th, 2012
7:11 pm

“Texas, Texas A&M and Oklahoma the other Big 12 heavyweights”

What other ones?

I dropped my fried Twinkie

July 17th, 2012
7:14 pm

Should be an interesting game. Usually the Dawgs lose these types of games the last 5 or so years.

Spurrier

July 17th, 2012
7:22 pm

Can ur boys cross the Ga state line Mark…. Probation officers let em… lolo

AlathamaDawg

July 17th, 2012
7:44 pm

Georgia certainly isn’t a heavyweight.

SEC BOYZ

July 17th, 2012
8:24 pm

Really.. The zou !! U haven’t played a defense like ours so pump your brakes!!
UGA won’t embarrass u yet but we will win .. Our defense is y we win
Do your research

Dawg Haus

July 17th, 2012
8:52 pm

The Zou? Really?

ATLER (Ramblin Wreck)

July 17th, 2012
10:12 pm

Ugag puppies off to running their mouths as usual…….. What else is new???!!!!

damngoodawg

July 17th, 2012
10:38 pm

Hey Ramblin Wreck, aka ALTER, I just wanted you techies to know how proud we locals are that West Georgia Technical College is getting a football program too. I think it’s great when the technical colleges can get a little football program going. Maybe they will play a high school offense like you guys…but with better success. Wish um luck!

RED DOG 77

July 18th, 2012
12:21 am

The question is: whom is “Vouing” who?, ………………I suppose…………RED

Dirty Dawg

July 18th, 2012
7:06 am

I really hope that the Dawgs wear their jet suits. They are so cute flying around hitting the opposing players after they are already down. Sexy beasts. Got their unis from The Boy Next Door at Piedmont Park.

Lee Corso

July 18th, 2012
7:46 am

Not so fast!….I’m thinking “the Mizz” is a little “intimidated” otherwise they wouldn’t have to keep reminding everyone how “loud” and “crazy” their stadium is going to be….Come on guys this is the SEC and it’s not UGA’s first rodeo. Sure UGA has fallen flat the last few times but something tells me their is something different about the leadership on this team and Mizz better watch out cause I keep hearing how great Franklin is and how our secondary will be thin but Swann and Mitchell are straight studs and with Jones, Jenkins, Washington, Drew, Bailey, A. Jones, and Geathers taking turns with him…he might just quit before halftime!

Top Row Dawg

July 18th, 2012
7:58 am

Looking forward to the Casino’s on the Missouri River. There won’t be any goal post taken to Harpo’s though.

Zoli

July 18th, 2012
10:31 am

Columbia, MO hasn’t a clue what is going to hit them. It’s going to be a sea of red and black, and a defense that will dominate! We only need 21 points to win this. UGA 21 Mizzou 17. Trip is booked!

Bulldawg Charlie

July 18th, 2012
11:06 am

Everyone from Corso to Herbstreit to the Swami will pick a Mizzou win because of the “Zou”, suspensions, blah blah blah.

Georgia is the superior team on paper and should win. If we don’t win we don’t really belong in any conversation about the top SEC programs and we should just shut up. Georgia 27, Mizzou 17.

kevin

July 18th, 2012
11:17 am

To fans of every team who might be reading this article/comments: Every, and that means EVERY, college football team has fans that run their mouths about their teams. It’s not just Georgia fans. You’re on a Georgia/Missouri article. What do you expect?
Personally, I can’t stand trash-talking fans. They have zero to do with the outcome of the game, but talk as if they’re somehow involved. JUST LOVE YOUR TEAM, AND SUPPORT THEM WIN OR LOSE.

kevin

July 18th, 2012
11:22 am

Bulldawg Charlie, We should just shut up period about being a top SEC program. Talk is just that. If Georgia is really a top SEC program, we won’t have to try to convince anyone of it. The fastest kid doesn’t have to try to convince everyone in his school that he’s the fastest. Everybody knows it. And the prettiest girl doesn’t have to try to convince everyone in her school that she’s the prettiest. Everybody knows it.
Strive to be the best. When you actually are, everybody knows it. End of story.

Bo Pelini

July 18th, 2012
1:00 pm

The whole Zou vs Zoo spelling controversy here is like the struggle in Lincoln with ensuring all understand that the ‘N’ in our stadium stands for Nowledge.

I wish both UGA and MIZ were on our schedule so you could experience true power football and the vaunted black shirt defense that will rule supreme! GBR

wsewell525

July 18th, 2012
1:49 pm

If we lose to Miss or win, it really doesn’t matter. It doesn’t disqualify us from the top of the SEC. We already are and everybody knows it. We fell off the past few years, but that’s because Stafford and Morneo left, we really haven’t had a QB or RB. We had Joe Cox who did the best he could, and celeb King and Washedup Ealey. This is the first year our team has actually been together for a while, even though Crowell is off the team, but really he sat out a lot of games last year anyways. Murray just needs to calm down back there, and hit his open guy. Our defense will take care of it!!

Dave

July 20th, 2012
12:55 pm

To clarify for those of you who have never been to Memorial Stadium in Columbia, MO, the side of the stadium reads “Welcome To The Zou.”