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Mizzou got shucked

Put simply, Missouri did not have a good game last week. I produced the 6 sports, and I was pleased with how it went. Gervino went live from the 6th floor of the press box with a live interview during the sports block, and then a Cardinals gm. 2 NLDS highlight. We scrambled to get it in on time but I was happy with it overall. Chris did a great job of doing the highlights without a monitor. After we wrapped up the show, I headed off to Faurot Field, where after lugging all the gear in the driving rain to the media shuttle, I got my credential from Kyle Stokes, who was running the live truck. Upon arrival though, I discovered the power outage situation (more on that later) resulting in limited elevator service, so I had to climb 4 flights of stairs with all the gear while dodging rich old geezers clutching their wine and cheese within the club level. Of course, the rain and overall weather was terrible – cold, driving rain and a somewhat strong wind. So, once within the press box, I finagled a garbage bag to cover the camera and went down to the field. I immediately discovered it’d be really difficult to shoot like I usually would, so I had to literally create a photo booth-like setup by putting the garbage bag over my head and using it like a cape with my only view through the LCD screen. While it was tough to see long passes and ball trajectory, it did a great job of keeping the camera dry. And with a complete lack of big plays in the 1st half, I didn’t miss much. I was right behind the end zone where Gabbert scored on the QB sneak, but unfortunately on the complete opposite side of the field for the safety earlier in the game. So, I departed the field with Missouri holding on to a 9-0 lead.

About that power problem – I’m guessing the extreme rain caused some sort of fuse to break in the campus power plant, shutting off all the power to the stadium. I was told the lights and all power shut off to the stadium for about 10 minutes. After backup generators fired up, the main scoreboard and PA system remained off – creating an eerie silence and dampened (literally) atmosphere for the entire game. On one hand, it was really cool because the whole crowd stood for most of the game and really paid attention to what was going on. They didn’t need much prodding to make noise on defensive 3rd downs or for the Mizzou touchdown. But, I think people began to lose energy as the game went along, and understandably so – the cold and rain began to affect people midway through the 3rd quarter. That loss of energy, coupled with the silent PA system and no Randy Wright “THIRRRRRRRRRRRDDD DOWN AND _____ “or “FIRST DOWN, M-I-Z!!” almost created a sense of foreboding collapse, even with a seeming impregnable 12-0 lead late in the 3rd quarter.

So I enjoyed the 2nd half in the warmth and dryness of the press box with my good friend Will Maetzold – whose trusty old camera succumbed to the elements, and he was forced to sit out the 2nd half. We viewed the collapse. That’s all I’ll say about that – but perhaps the most irritating part of it all was seeing the Nebraska fans going crazy from high above. I understand they travel well, but good lord, they made a lot of noise and hearing “There is No Place like Nebraska” blaring from the Marching Huskers was very annoying.

After the game ended, we went down to the media room to wait for Pinkel and co. His presser was uneventful – he didn’t say anything that surprised me or anyone else. We then talked to Andrew Gachkar (quite honest and a good interview), Sean Weatherspoon (as always a good interview), Jaron Baston, and Blaine Gabbert (after 45 minutes waiting for him). Gabbert was in a terrible mood (understandably so) but he was uncharacteristically short and terse in his answers. He’s usually pretty approachable and courteous, but on that night with the pain he endured physically and emotionally throwing 2 INTs, I can understand.

After taking off, I put together a PKG on Sunday for the sports show about Nebraska’s resurgent 4th quarter. Watching them put up 27 points seemed like I was watching a sleeping giant of a program emerge from its hibernation to swat and destroy a pest – in this case, Missouri. I may not have pleased some diehard Missouri fans, but that’s what it seemed to me. I wanted to put some of my personality and commentary into the story, and the story hit me while sitting in the press box watching them come back.

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