Q&A with Missouri beat writer Matter 

June, 26, 2012
Each week at TideNation we will speak with a writer who covers one of Alabama's 2012 opponents. Today we spoke with Dave Matter, who covers all things Missouri for the Columbia Daily Tribune. He's the co-author of The Mizzou Fan's Survival Guide to the SEC.

Question: It's the place everyone starts and I'll be no different: How do you see Missouri's transition to the SEC going in Year 1?

[+] EnlargeJames Franklin
Mark J. Rebilas/US PresswireIf Missouri QB James Franklin gets fully healthy, SEC defenses will be challenged.
Matter: Missouri has the roster to compete in 2012, especially in the Eastern Division. Having a returning starting quarterback is crucial assuming James Franklin will be fully recovered from shoulder surgery he underwent in March. The Tigers return enough first-team talent and experience on both sides of the ball to compete with the best teams in the SEC East, —but I'’m not convinced they have the depth to win the division while going through the grind of the SEC schedule. There will be some adjustments against the typical style of offense in the league, but Missouri has historically played better against physical, run-first, pro-style offenses, on the rare occasion it faced that kind of attack in the Big 12. Texas would be the best example of late, and MU had its best defensive game of the year last season against Texas.
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