The man who calls Missouri Tiger football games expected a good year, but admits he didn’t expect the year the Tigers are having.
Mike Kelly is in his 17 th year as the voice of the Tigers. He says as he assessed this year, he figured the Tigers would win 9, perhaps 10 games. He admits he never envisioned the year they are having.
Missouri goes into the Big 12 Conference championship game against Oklahoma 11-and-1 on the year, ranked number one in the nation. The Sooners go into the game 10-and-2, ranked 9 th . If it hadn’t been for a loss to Texas Tech, Oklahoma would be in the title hunt. Kelly says the Sooners come into the game playing at a very high level and will prove to be a difficult opponent for the Tigers.
Kelly says the Tigers had enough of their offense returning to feel confident they could put up big numbers this year. He says the team didn’t return as many starters on defense, but had enough players with game experience to believe it could become stronger on defense.
Kelly says he has been pleasantly surprised by how the Tigers’ success has galvanized the state. He says that was never more evident than last week. As he drove to Kansas City for the Missouri-Kansas showdown at Arrowhead, Kelly noticed the Missouri Department of Transportation electronic message boards had their usual traffic information for drivers with one significant addition; at the end of each message, the board proclaimed, “Go MU, beat KU”.