Missouri coach Gary Pinkel is one victory from matching Don Faurot, whose name is on the field at Memorial Stadium, for the most career coaching wins with the Tigers.
Pinkel hit victory No. 100 when the Tigers won 24-10 on Saturday at Mississippi.
“He hit the century mark tonight,” sophomore center Evan Boehm said. “In the locker room, I stole a ball from the sideline. He gave (junior running back) Henry (Josey) a game ball his first game back and, last home game, he gave his daughter’s father-in-law a game ball. I think coach Pinkel deserved a game ball for this win. That’s 100 wins, and that’s huge.”
Pinkel is 100-62 during his 13 seasons with the Tigers, while Faurot went 101-79-10 in 19 seasons between 1935 and 1956.
Obviously, it’s a different era, but the fact that Pinkel, who passed Dan Devine on Missouri’s all-time wins list earlier in the season, is passing coaching legends on that list speaks volumes.
“It doesn’t surprise me,” senior cornerback E.J. Gaines said. “Coach Pinkel, if you ask me, is one of the greatest college coaches that there is. Playing for a guy like that, it’s unbelievable to hear a stat like that.”
Of course, Pinkel brushed off talk about inching closer to Faurot’s record during Monday’s media availability.
“I never did this to break records,” Pinkel said. “I did this, because I have a responsibility to the University of Missouri to build a great program that’s respected.”
Missouri, 10-1 overall and 6-1 in the SEC, is ranked fifth in The Associated Press and BCS rankings.
The Tigers have clinched at least a share of the SEC East Division championship, the fourth conference division crown (or share of one) in the last seven seasons.
“It’s real important to me that people in the SEC, in this league, have great respect for the University of Missouri football,” Pinkel said. “And it’s very important to me personally that national people respect — when you say Mizzou football, they have great respect for Mizzou football. That’s my goal. That’s what I do this for. That’s why I came here. And that’s ongoing.”Henson up for award
Missouri offensive coordinator Josh Henson is one of 40 nominees for the Broyles Award, which is given to the top assistant coach in college football. The winner will be announced Dec. 10.