Monday, January 31, 2011

John Kadlec Retires From MU Football Broadcast Booth



Columbia, Mo. – The radio career of
John Kadlec spanned 16 seasons in all in the Tiger Radio Network booth, and today, the man known affectionately as “Mr. Mizzou” has decided to hang up the microphone.

Kadlec, who has been associated with Mizzou Athletics for the majority of the last 60-plus years, will no longer call Tiger Football games alongside The Voice of the Tigers Mike Kelly, but he’ll still remain a vital member of Mizzou Athletics in his other role as Special Assistant to the Athletic Director.

Kadlec said that enjoyed his time in the booth.

“Oh, I had a lot of fun doing the games,” he said. “For a guy with no background in it, things sure worked out well. I always tried to be well-prepared and I certainly feel like I know football, so I think I added something to the broadcast. I know I really enjoyed working with Mike Kelly and Chris Gervino and all the people behind the scenes who helped out so much, that’s for sure,” he said.

Kelly said that he’ll miss having the coach around in the booth.

“It has been an absolute joy and pleasure to spend the last 16 seasons working with John Kadlec,” Kelly said.

“I can’t imagine any other student-athlete that’s ever attended the University of Missouri who has been more passionately committed to his University and his athletic department and the football program than Coach Kadlec. The passion and the love that he has for the institution is so evident any time that you’re around him. He’s taught me so much about football, but more importantly he’s been such a great friend, and I’m going to miss having him with me,” he said.

Kelly recounted a couple of special moments that stood out in the booth – a Tiger win at Colorado in 1997 which guaranteed MU’s first bowl game since 1983, and Mizzou’s dominating win over Arkansas in the 2008 Cotton Bowl to cap one of the best seasons in school history.

“After the game on both of those occasions, I looked over and saw a tear in the eye of John Kadlec because he was so proud of his football program. That just epitomizes to me what Mizzou means to him,” Kelly said.

“We’re certainly sad to see Coach Kadlec step away from the microphone, but we’re excited that he’s still going to be a big part of our team overall,” said Director of Athletics Mike Alden. “He’s so important to Mizzou Athletics, I can’t go anywhere in our state without someone asking about him. I think his genuine love for Mizzou really helped him connect with our fans over the years, and his great knowledge of football helped give him a unique perspective that will be missed on the broadcasts,” Alden said.

Kadlec said he has a lot of people to thank for his 16-year run.

“There’s too many people to list, but of course I want to thank Joe Castiglione for getting me into it, or maybe I should blame him maybe,” he joked. “Certainly Mike Alden has been so supportive and that’s meant a lot to me, as has the support I’ve gotten over the years with our coaching staffs of Gary Pinkel and Larry Smith. I also really enjoyed working for Jeff Shoultz of Mizzou Sports Properties and Laird Veatch (formerly of MSP), as well as Learfield Communications and Clyde Lear, I’ve always thought it was a great outfit to work for,” he said.

“You can bet your bottom dollar that I’m going to be upstairs watching the game in the press box,” he said. “I’ll be seeing a lot of people and a lot of friends in the suites and in the Tiger Lounge, and I plan on being able to enjoy myself walking around in the tailgating lots and just having a good time,” he said.

“And who knows, maybe I might sneak into the booth now and then to give everyone a hard time,” he said.

Kadlec has been a Mizzou icon for well over a half century. He first came to Mizzou from his native St. Louis, Mo. to play football for Hall of Fame Coach Don Faurot in 1947. After earning his degree from MU, he stayed on as a graduate assistant coach for Faurot, and he coached the freshman team until 1954 when he moved up to varsity, where he served through 1959. After a stint at Kansas State from 1960-66, Kadlec returned to Mizzou to serve on the staffs of Dan Devine and Al Onofrio, coaching from 1966-77 on the Tiger sideline.

After his coaching days ended, Kadlec returned to Kansas State as Director of Development, before returning to Mizzou in 1986 as Director of the Tiger Scholarship Fund, and he’s been a fixture in Columbia ever since. He was a 1996 inductee into the MU Athletics Hall of Fame, and in 2005, the grass practice fields behind the Mizzou Athletic Training Complex were named in his honor.

Kadlec will continue his active role in the philanthropic efforts with the John and Dolly Kadlec Society, a newly created society in honor of Coach and his wife of 60 years that promotes planned and estate giving back to Mizzou Athletics. For more information the Kadlec Society, please call the Tiger Scholarship Fund at 573-882-0704
.

Friday, January 28, 2011

Coming Soon to Mizzou...


The Mizzou Athletic Training Center is constantly improving. Coming soon, the lobby of the facility will have an interactive video wall, including this tiger who will greet you as you walk in.
Look for more video updates in the next few weeks!

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

USA Today Recognizes Brad Smith on All-Joe Team



By Nate Davis, USA TODAY

The All-Joe team was born in 1992 as a tribute to Joe Phillips, a 14-year defensive lineman who did yeoman's work for the Kansas City Chiefs that season. His work in the trenches didn't lead to much glory … unless you point to the 29 combined sacks of Derrick Thomas and Neil Smith, Kansas City's fifth-ranked defense or the team's wild-card run. USA TODAY has honored the unsung Joes of the NFL ever since.

KR: Brad Smith, Jets —His 28.6-yard average on kickoffs ranked second in NFL but only begins to illustrate versatility. Made 14 special teams tackles.



USA Today also recognized Smith as the Jets MVP:

Who were the NFL's prime performers from the 2010 season? USA TODAY's Nate Davis reviews the team MVPs for all 32 clubs (based on regular-season performance only):

New York Jets: Returner Brad Smith. The latest in a long line of stellar Jets special-teamers, Smith's 28.6-yard kickoff return average paced the league among players with at least 25 returns. He scored on runbacks vs. the Cincinnati Bengals and Pittsburgh Steelers, keying both New York victories. The versatile Smith, who played quarterback at Missouri, also completed two passes while running the Jets' version of the Wildcat. And he was third on the team with 299 rushing yards, caught four passes for 44 yards and contributed 14 special-teams tackles.


Click here to read more...

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Mizzou Makes Use of Its Recruiting Classes


Missouri has the second highest achievement rating for recruiting. The Tigers have done a lot with their high-ranked recruiting classes.

Read more...

Monday, January 24, 2011

Former Tiger Heads to Super Bowl XLV



PITTSBURGH, PA - JANUARY 23: Ziggy Hood(notes) #96 of the Pittsburgh Steelers is introduced prior to their 2011 AFC Championship game against the New York Jets at Heinz Field on January 23, 2011 in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. (Photo by Ronald Martinez/Getty Images)

Thursday, January 20, 2011

ESPN Draft Analysts Pick Gabbert and Smith to go in First Round



ESPN.com Insider Draft Analysts Mel Kiper Jr. and Todd McShay have Blaine Gabbert as the first QB to go in a mock 2011 NFL Draft. Kiper Jr. has Gabbert going 5th overall, while McShay has Gabbert going 3rd overall.

Here are Kiper Jr.'s explanations on why both Gabbert and Aldon Smith will go in the first round:

 Buffalo Bills

Record: 4-12

 

Blaine Gabbert, QB, Missouri

The Bills are in need of a franchise quarterback, and with Luck not on the board, Gabbert is the best available signal-caller. He has the physical tools and football smarts to become a very good NFL QB once he makes the full transition to a pro-style offense.

 Kansas City

Record: 10-6



Aldon Smith, DE, Missouri

Kansas City needs a pass-rusher opposite Tamba Hali and Smith is one of the more underrated players in this draft. He's a little undersized for a 4-3 end but is a perfect fit at outside linebacker in the Chiefs' 3-4 defense.

Be sure to click on the video playlist to see both McShay and Kiper Jr. talk about Gabbert going as the first QB in the 2011 NFL Draft.

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Mizzou's Gabbert, Smith cram for NFL exams

BY VAHE GREGORIAN

PHOENIX  •  In a span of days, Parkway West graduate Blaine Gabbert went from Mizzou junior quarterback to a probable first-round prospect for the 2011 NFL draft to potentially becoming the No. 1 quarterback taken after Stanford's Andrew Luck decided to stay in school.

"We believe that he has a chance to fight to be the No. 1 quarterback taken in the 2011 draft," said Ben Dogra, one of Gabbert's representatives at Clayton-based CAA Football. "And if history repeats itself, if you're the first quarterback taken, you have a legitimate chance to be a top 10 pick."

The dynamics at play will be fluid, even volatile, through the April 28-30 draft. Every player has a draft range, Dogra said, by way of example suggesting a top 15 scenario for a player may mean he goes anywhere from fifth to 20th depending on numerous variables.

read more about Blaine and Aldon's preparation...

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Ziggy Hood Makes Game-Winning Sack





Former Mizzou DL Ziggy Hood from Amarillo, TX makes a huge sack to help seal a playoff victory for the Pittsburgh Steelers. For two years in a row, Missouri will have a former Tiger in the Super Bowl.

Last year former Mizzou QB Chase Daniel was with the defending champion Saints, and this year either former Mizzou QB Brad Smith will go with the Jets or Hood will go with the Steelers.

Monday, January 17, 2011

Saturday, January 15, 2011

Mizzou is Home to 3rd Smartest College Sports Teams



The Daily Beast calculated the University of Missouri-Columbia as the third smartest college for sports.

Men’s Basketball APR: 1000

Football APR: 977

Women’s Basketball APR: 1000

Average APR: 992.3

Average Multiyear APR: 979.0

Friday, January 7, 2011

Mizzou’s Aldon Smith to Declare for NFL Draft



Columbia, Mo. – University of Missouri sophomore defensive end Aldon Smith (Raytown, Mo.) has decided to make himself available for the 2011 NFL Draft.  Smith will bypass his final two seasons of eligibility at Mizzou, following his three years on campus which saw him develop into one of the most talented defensive ends in the nation.

After redshirting in 2008, Smith burst onto the national scene as a redshirt freshman in 2009, when he won 1st-Team Freshman All-American honors, as well as Big 12 Conference Defensive Freshman and Newcomer of the Year, while amassing an MU single-season record 11.5 quarterback sacks.  His 2010 season was hampered by a leg injury which kept him out of three games in the first half of the year, but he returned in time to grab a key interception in his first game back against #1-ranked Oklahoma which helped Mizzou post a 36-27 win over the Sooners in Columbia.

In 10 games in 2010, Smith had 48 total tackles, including 10 tackles for loss and 5.5 quarterback sacks.  He opened his sophomore season with an impressive outing in a 23-13 win over Illinois, when he notched 10 tackles, including three tackles for loss and two quarterback sacks.  Smith was named 1st-Team All-Big 12 by league coaches for his play in 2010, and his 17 career sacks ties him for sixth-best on the MU charts.

“I’d like to thank everyone at Mizzou for supporting me,” said Smith.  “The coaches, our fans and alumni, everyone has been great, and they’ve definitely helped me get to this point.  It’s been my dream for as long as I can remember to play in the NFL, so this is something I’m really excited for,” he said.

Mizzou Head Coach Gary Pinkel said that he is supportive of Smith’s decision.

“There’s no question that Aldon is one of the most gifted athletes in the country at his position,” Pinkel said.  “We’d love to have the chance to coach him longer, but we’re 100 percent behind him and supportive with this decision.  Aldon gave us three outstanding years, and it’s going to be exciting to watch him in the pros, because his best football is ahead of him,” he said.

Fifteen Tigers overall have been drafted in the last six NFL Drafts (2005-10), including six in 2009.  This year’s draft is scheduled for April 28-30, in New York City.

Here’s a look at the career stats for Smith during his 23-game Mizzou career:

ALDON SMITH CAREER STATS

Year          G-GS   Solo-Asst.    Total      TFL-Yds           Yds    PBU      Rec.          Forced

2009        13-11           46-18         64       19-126    11.5-99          5            1          1

2010        10-10           34-14         48         10-47      5.5-29          2            0          1

Monday, January 3, 2011

Mizzou’s Blaine Gabbert to Declare for NFL Draft



Columbia, Mo. – University of Missouri junior quarterback Blaine Gabbert (Ballwin, Mo.) has decided to forego his final year of collegiate eligibility, and make himself available for the 2011 NFL Draft.  Gabbert made the choice following an outstanding 2010 season, which was capped by a standout performance in the 2010 Insight Bowl, when he completed 41-of-57 passes for 434 yards and a touchdown.

Gabbert won 18 games in his two years as the starting quarterback for Mizzou, including 10 wins in 2010, which represented only the fourth 10-win season in 120 years of MU football history.  Gabbert threw for 3,186 yards and 16 touchdowns in 2010, while running for 232 yards and five more scores.  In 31 career games at Mizzou, Gabbert threw for 6,822 yards, which is fourth-most in MU annals, while his 40 career touchdown passes ranks as third-best in school history.  His career pass efficiency rating of 132.59 is also the second-highest in Mizzou history.

“This is definitely a bittersweet day for me, I was really looking forward to having a chance to do some special things next season with my teammates, but in the end, this is the right decision to make for myself and my family,” said Gabbert.  “These last three years have been an unbelievable experience for me, and I’ll miss being at Mizzou, but I’m definitely looking forward to this next stage of my life.  I’m so grateful to have been part of such a great program and all of the people who have helped me get to this point, and now I have to take what I’ve learned, and build on that for the next level.  I’ll always be a Tiger, and I look forward to watching the guys do big things in the future,” he said.

Mizzou Head Coach
Gary Pinkel said that the time is right for Gabbert to try his wares in the professional ranks.

“We’re very proud of Blaine, and how hard he’s worked to put himself in position for this opportunity,” said Pinkel.  “He’s been an outstanding leader for our team, it’s been a privilege to coach him and have him as part of our program.  Blaine is excited to take on a new set of challenges at the next level, and I’m confident he’ll be a great representative of Mizzou Football going forward,” Pinkel said.

Mizzou has had three of its standouts become first-round selections over the last two NFL Drafts, including LB Sean Weatherspoon (#19 overall to Atlanta in 2010), WR Jeremy Maclin (#19 to Philadelphia in 2009) and DT Ziggy Hood (#32 to Pittsburgh in 2009).  Fifteen Tigers overall have been drafted in the last six NFL Drafts (2005-10), including six in 2009.

Here’s a look at the career stats for Gabbert during his 31-game Mizzou career:

BLAINE GABBERT CAREER STATS

Year          G-GS        Passing         Pct.        Yds.     TD     INT      Rating

2008           5-0              5-13    38.5%           43        0          0       66.25

2009          13-13       262-445    58.9%     3,593     24          9     140.45

2010          13-13       301-475    63.4%     3,186     16          9     127.04