In terms of population, Missouri is the 18th largest state in the U.S. Of the states listed ahead of it, all but Massachusetts and New Jersey have more than one FBS football program. Missouri is also home to two of the top 30 largest metropolitan areas in the nation.
I’ve been waiting for years to watch the Missouri Tigers take advantage of those statistics and build a perennial powerhouse in college football. The Tigers were able to step up and have respectable seasons in the past, but they have not been able to sustain any sort of success — especially given the resources in terms of in-state recruits and location.
Something was holding them back. Year after year, Oklahoma, Texas, Nebraska as well as several SEC and PAC 10/12 schools would raid the state of Missouri, plucking top flight recruits out of the state and out of the grasp of the home state Tigers. For the most part, Missouri was powerless to recruit against these teams. Location was all that the Tigers had to offer.