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Missouri Basketball: Why Mike Anderson Leaving Is Good for the Program

COLUMBIA, MO - JANUARY 17:  Laurence Bowers #21 of the Missouri Tigers dunks during the game against the Kansas State Wildcats on January 17, 2011 at Mizzou Arena in Columbia, Missouri.  (Photo by Jamie Squire/Getty Images)
Jamie Squire/Getty Images
Koala BearContributor IMarch 24, 2011

Yesterday, like most Missouri fans I just felt sick after I heard all the news about Coach Mike Anderson leaving to go to Arkansas. Everything that he has worked for the past five years are now only going to be kept in record books and in the rafters of Mizzou Arena. 

Watching the Mizzou press conference last night, you could see the anger and frustration on the faces of Bowers, Denmon and English. They were not going to say how they really felt about the situation, but Kimmie English unloaded some awesome quotes while they were on the podium, "I looked at my teammates and said we will make it through this, we will be OK." Then he said my personal favorite as he was getting up to leave, "We will reconcile it by winning."

That one simple phrase says it all, this group of seniors is going to be determined to prove something. They are not going to dwell on the past and they will not allow this to keep them down. The common theme during the presser was that they play for Missouri, not Mike Anderson. 

Now starts the process of finding a new coach for the University of Missouri basketball program. In my opinion the program needs to stay as far away from gimmicky junk basketball as they can. For the team to be able to compete with the powers of the Big XII and the nation, they need to run a traditional offence. The "fastest 40 minutes in basketball" looked awesome against weaker competition, but when they played good teams it looked more like "40 minutes of mild inconvenience." This is not a good look for this team.

The new coach, whoever it may be, is going to be in really good shape. He will start out with a very strong senior class, and then a bunch of scholarships to play around with the next year. This is important because that will help him mold this team into his style of players. This could also bring very quick success to the new coach, and who wouldn't want that?

To be very clear, I am not taking anything away from what Mike Anderson did for the program. He took it from the shambles of Quin Snyder to three straight NCAA appearances. That is no easy thing to accomplish, but he did it in less than six years. Although, I personally don't think he was going to take this team to the next level because good teams can stop his style from being effective; it takes good players to beat good teams.

I wish the best of luck to Coach Anderson in the future, but that is it. Missouri needs to move on and get ready for the next era in Mizzou Basketball. The future is bright in Columbia.

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