COLUMBIA — Missouri head football coach Gary Pinkel said during Monday's teleconference that he had no knowledge about where his team might be headed when bowl season arrives and that he wasn't sure how much leaving the Big 12 Conference will have an effect on the team's bowl selection.
"I would like to think that they're going to do what's right," Pinkel said of the Big 12. "I don't know how it's going to come down. I'll find out more information this week as (Missouri Athletics Director) Mike Alden gets discussions with the Big 12 and so on."
Team spokesman Chad Moller confirmed that Alden told the Tiger Quarterback Club this afternoon that the Meineke Car Care Bowl of Texas, the New Era Pinstripe Bowl or other non-Big 12 bowls were the options right now for Missouri, and that the Big 12 athletics directors will have a conference call to talk about bowls Tuesday.
It's possible that the Tigers could fall out of one of the Big 12's guaranteed bowls, because there are eight bowl-eligible teams from the league and only seven slots.
An announcement revealing what bowl the Tigers will play in this season is expected Sunday afternoon.
Deep in the heart of … Florida?
Pinkel said the team has already started changing its recruiting plan, speaking about changes to the program's recruiting for the first time since the announcement was made that the Tigers were joining the Southeastern Conference.
"We've made a couple of adjustments," Pinkel said. "We're going to put one of our coaches into Atlanta, and we're going to put two into Florida, so that's adjustments we've already made in the last few weeks."
Pinkel said Missouri had not pulled any of its coaches out of Texas yet, but that the transition to recruiting in the SEC was still a work in progress.
"We still have the same coaches in Texas, but we're also giving them different areas," Pinkel said. "After this recruiting area is over, then we're going to kind of make permanent adjustments based on the information we have at that time."
Attacking new areas is nothing different for Missouri. When Pinkel and his staff first arrived in Columbia, it was Texas they turned their eyes toward. Now, in the SEC, it will be Florida and Georgia.
"You're just going into territories that you haven't been to, and you've got to develop relationships, and there's a transition process, there's no question about it," Pinkel said. "But how we do things, and what we do, that's why we win and why we have success here, so we'll continue to do those things … The foundation of who we are isn't going to change at all."
Kansas' head football coach out after two years
Turner Gill was fired Sunday afternoon after going 5-19 in his two seasons in Lawrence, Kan. Gill won just one Big 12 game over that period.
The Jayhawks' coach expressed confidence that he would be retained during both last week's regular press briefing Tuesday in Lawrence and in his postgame comments Saturday in Kansas City.
"I expect to be here for a long time," Gill said Tuesday.
Gill went on to compare his first two years at Kansas to Iowa coach Kirk Ferentz's first two seasons with the Hawkeyes. Ferentz went 4-19 in the 1999 and 2000 seasons but has posted just one losing season in the 11 seasons since.
But Gill's Jayhawks were getting blown out. Kansas lost six times by 40-plus points, while Ferentz's Hawkeyes did that just once. In addition, Ferentz won two of the final three games in his second year, while Gill and Kansas lost their final 10 this season.
Pinkel was empathetic toward Gill's plight, saying that two years is a short time period for a football coach to make improvements.
"There's no way in the world that you could start a program, building your program that has been down, and just flip it that quick," Pinkel said. "I think it's really disappointing."