No. 1's The Underdog

By Adam Caparell - November 27, 2007


Coming off the biggest win in program history, Missouri was your new No. 1 team in the country and new No. 1 team in the BCS standings Sunday. Yet, as the Tigers get ready for the biggest game in history, they're the underdog in Saturday's Big 12 Championship game. And while that may not irk the Tigers as a group, it certainly irks Chase Daniel.

"It's just a lack of respect," the Missouri quarterback said. "We're the No. 1 team in the nation and I think any No. 1 in the nation should be favored in any game that they play for the simple reason that they're No. 1."

The Tigers enter Saturday's showdown at the Alamodome in San Antonio as three point underdogs, despite the fact they were crowned the nation's top team for the first time since 1960 Sunday. But Daniel isn't naive. He knows why Vegas has the Sooners installed as three point favorites.

"Everyone's doubting us," Daniel said. "We relish the role of underdog. We have a tough game and we understand why Oklahoma is favored. Look at the overall series. We haven't won against Oklahoma very much."

The Tigers have beaten the Sooners just twice in the past 24 years. Missouri's last win over Oklahoma came in 1998, the year before Bob Stoops arrived. And you have to go all the way back to 1983 to find their next win in the series that Oklahoma has dominated. The Sooners have a 64-23-5 edge in the all-time series and have won five in a row.

Of course, that isn't the only reason Oklahoma is the favorite. The Sooners beat the Tigers in their regular season matchup, winning in Norman by 10, and are accustomed to playing for a championship. Oklahoma will be going for its 41st conference title in school history while Missouri, on the other end of the spectrum, hasn't won a conference title since 1969.

Posted by Adam Caparell at 03:50 PM on November 27, 2007
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