September 22, 2007

Tiger Notebook: Ready for the Big Red

Less than half an hour after Missouri dispatched of Illinois State 38-17, Chase Daniel had moved on.

"All that's on my mind is Nebraska," Daniel said.

Him and every Tiger fan across the country. With the non-conference season now in the rearview mirror in a 4-and-0 fashion, Missouri has two weeks to prepare for the showdown with the Cornhuskers that has been circled on every fan's schedule for months…but it has been nowhere to be found on the Tigers' schedules.

"Coach took every game off the schedule and just put up one game a week every week," Sean Weatherspoon said. "I think we did a pretty good job of just taking it one game at a time. Definitely looking forward to playing Nebraska though."

"We've been talking about Nebraska in the locker room the whole time," Tony Temple said. "We can't wait."

The Tigers will have to wait another 14 days before the Huskers come calling.

"I'd rather play this week," Daniel said.

Not all Tigers felt that way, particularly the one whose opinion counts the most. While happy to be 4-and-0, Gary Pinkel will have no shortage of concerns to address over the next two weeks of practice.

"The consistency of play has got to get a heck of a lot better," Pinkel said. "I don't think we've come close to playing our best game yet."

Despite the Huskers' 41-40 scare against Ball State on Saturday, Missouri knows they will have to be on their game come October 6th.

"I just heard the score in the locker room," Jeremy Maclin said. "You can't take nobody for granted. Ball State, they're probably not as talented as Nebraska, but they were hungry. But I'm glad Nebraska won."

While Pinkel refused to acknowledge the game as any more important than any other he has coached, he did allow that it should bring a big-game atmosphere to Columbia.

"This place will be rocking," Pinkel said. "So it will be fun."

Kickoff time for the game against the Cornhuskers should be announced by the Big 12 on Monday.

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