Missouri's Barry Odom on Facing Florida, QB Drew Lock's Progress

Missouri football coach Barry Odom spoke with reporters on Wednesday morning.

Missouri coach Barry Odom spoke about his team, the challenges of facing the Florida Gators, sophomore quarterback Drew Lock and more on the Southeastern Conference teleconference on Wednesday morning.

Here’s what the Tigers coach said during his time with reporters.

Odom’s opening statement…

“We’re coming off of a bye week and utilized the opportunity to get some guys healed up and also have a number of days to get some extra work in on our upcoming opponent. It proved to be a really good week for us. Also had the opportunity to get on the road and do some evaluations recruiting-wise, which will help us tremendously moving forward. I have got a lot of respect for Florida and the staff that they have there has done a tremendous job on  preparing their team. They always play at a high level. They are well coached.” 

On potential changes to the defense being tweaks or something more drastic…

“No. Just within the scheme and within the structure of things that we’re doing to try to get our guys in position to play as good as they can play. There’s always, as we go into a week, you try to build the defense or build the offense to what you think will give you a chance schematically and that’s some different things that we’ve had time to work on with having a few extra days here. You always have an opportunity to build some other things into what you’re doing into your base packages. Our guys have practiced well, worked hard in trying to become a better football team and I think we are compared to where we were a few days ago.”

http://www.scout.com/college/missouri/story/1716502-florida-s-mcelwain-o...

On the challenge of facing Florida’s secondary after struggling against LSU…

“Absolutely they are very talented. They have athletes all over the field and they do a great job of coaching them. We have to do a tremendous job coaching, we have to do a great job on giving ourselves a chance schematically on our route concepts of what we’re asking our kids to do and then at the end of the day we have to go execute and we’ve got to go out and have the confidence to go make a play. There will be times that we make plays. There will be times that they make plays. That usually happens. You have to withstand the times that you’re not successful and don’t let that play affect the next one and line up and go play as good as you can the next snap. That’s where our focus is on every play, just trying to play our best that snap and then put that one behind you and go get the next one. If you can do that and have success over the course of a game and do it consistently then you put yourself in a position to be successful on the day.”

On what has impressed him about Lock’s season…

“I think he’s continuing to develop. I think the thing that stands out most to me is the leadership qualities that I knew he had, I knew he possessed those from being involved when we were recruiting him. All the things that he did coming out of high school. Just a tremendous athlete in basketball and football. Then you saw him inner beliefs on the way that he carried himself and the way he was able to lead his teams no matter what he was playing. That’s shown up a little bit more to me since January when we got rolling with this deal. I still think absolutely he can get a lot better and he’s going to. I think things are continuing to slow down a little bit for him on the field. He’s preparing the right way, he’s working the right way, throughout the week with the things we’re throwing at him in practice. He’s starting to get the team around him offensively wanting to play at a really high level. So some of those things come with maturing. They also come with having confidence in yourself to be able to lead a little bit and he’s got that. I still think where we are today from where we started I think he’s still got that much more growth to go in a positive way.”

On offensive coordinator Josh Heupel’s impact on the offense and why Odom wanted Heupel in that role…

“I’ve had a lot of respect for Coach Heupel for a number of years and it goes back to when we played against each other and then coached against each other and recruited against each other. He’s always a guy that I respected on being a great leader of young men. He has a tremendous football I.Q. and is always going to try to find an advantage on where to put our kids to have success. When I knew I had the opportunity to go target who I wanted in that spot, we were able to sit down and talk and you never know when those things happen if the timing will ever work and fortunate that they have because he’s set a standard on that side of the ball on No. 1 the way the quarterbacks are supposed to prepare and what our expectations are for our football team offensively.”

You can follow Nate Latsch on Twitter at @NateLatsch or email him at natelatsch@gmail.com.

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