Published: Wed, December 11, 2019
Sport | By Kayla Schwartz

Mizzou hiring Appalachian State's Eli Drinkwitz

Mizzou hiring Appalachian State's Eli Drinkwitz

Less than half of Memorial Stadium was full at the 2009 Missouri spring game, but it turns out that the Tigers' newest head coach was in attendance.

Drinkwitz, 36, earns $750,000 annually in his first season at 20th-ranked Appalachian State, according to a USA Today database on coach salaries. Drinkwitz is now the sixth-youngest head coach in the FBS.

When Gus Malzahn left Auburn to become head coach at Arkansas State in 2012, Drinkwitz came along with him as running backs coach.

He will replace Barry Odom. Odom got Missouri bowl eligible in three of his four seasons, but was sacked by athletic director Jim Sterk immediately after this season. The Mountaineers won road games over Power-5 conference opponents, North Carolina and SC. But I'm not in any hurry to leave. It appears that Eli Drinkwitz will have to prove himself in the Show-Me State.

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"I don't have a lot of answers for you right now", he said. "We are never going to fear failure".

Appalachian State's previous head coach, Scott Satterfield, was hired at Louisville last offseason.

Drinkwitz, widely considered a creative offensive mind, should stoke some passion from a Missouri fanbase that has grown exhausted of mediocrity to the point that attendance started to plummet this past season.

Under Drinkwitz, the Mountaineers set a Sun Belt record with 11 regular-season victories. He appeared to be on the right track, too, taking the Tigers to a couple of bowl games. In addition to the conference championship, Drinkwitz's Mountaineers won road games over two Power 5 teams, North Carolina and SC, the latter of which plays Missouri every year.

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