FAYETTEVILLE — Barry Odom was head coach at the University of Missouri for four years and never lost to Arkansas, but on Friday he got to feel what it’s like to win on the other side.
Odom is Arkansas’ defensive coordinator and was on the losing side last year in Columbia. But on Friday, No. 25 Arkansas defeated Missouri 34-17. Sam Pittman talked about Odom following the game and cleared up who was having a birthday on Friday after a message at the stadium thought it was Pittmans.
“I also want to say I’m very happy for coach Odom,” Pittman said. “It is his birthday today, mine’s not until Sunday. I don’t really want to talk about the situation, but I am very, very happy for him and our football team.”
Pittman made sure his defensive captains presented Odom with the game ball when asked if he was presented one?
“Actually I didn’t,” Pittman said. “I had the game ball and gave it to Grant Morgan and Joe Foucha and I asked them to give it to Barry and they stood up and talked about what Coach Odom means to them. And certainly we did give him the game ball. He deserved it.”
Missouri had to settle for three field goals until 1:25 remained in the game scoring a meaningless touchdown. Henry finished the game with 10 tackles, seven solo, one for loss, a pass breakup and two quarterback hurries. He talked about giving the ball to Odom.
“I’m very happy for Coach Odom,” Henry said. “I said in media this week that’s he’s a stone cold killer and he’s the spear of our team – the tip of the spear. The guy is just a legend and he brings it every day. I couldn’t be happier for him. I mean, it’s his birthday today and we went out and beat his … you know the history there – went out and beat Missouri. We got that win for him. I was happy that he got the game ball. I was happy to see him excited about that.”
Bumper Pool led the Hogs with 13 tackles including five solo. He also talked about Odom.
“Coach Odom, he prepares harder than anybody you could possibly imagine, and he put it in us this week to go out there and get it done,” Pool said. “I’m just so happy we could go out there and get it done for him, because what he’s meant for the University of Arkansas should never go unnoticed because he completely turned around a team and a defense, and we’re forever in his debt.”
Arkansas held Missouri to 316 yards of total offense with the majority of that, 251, coming on the ground. By comparison, Arkansas had 425 yards of total offense including 262 through the air.
Arkansas (8-4. 4-4) will now await word from the bowl game they will attend. Much speculation has been on the Gator Bowl and Outback Bowl, both in Florida.