The day began with such promise. University of Missouri football coaches sat at the folding table inside Alabama’s Bibb County High School next to a prospect they believed they’d literally stolen from underneath Nick Saban’s nose. By 9am, they sat embarrassed and struggling to explain how they had almost given onetime Mizzou star quarterback Maty Mauk another scholarship.
Coach Barry Odom, who had flown in to accompany the surprise announcement, said, “It was a bad read on our part. We should have known when we met him in the school hallway and he said, ‘How do you do, fellow kids?'”
College football’s early signing day began this morning, offering prospects across the nation an opportunity to put forward their letters of intent for the coming year. Mizzou’s program had projected optimism throughout the late autumn recruiting period. All along, they were privately scheming to hide their prize recruit lest Saban swoop in at the last moment. Little did they know, the secret belonged to their prospect.
Maty Mauk, now 24 years old, had schemed with Bibb County locals to appear as a sleeper quarterback recruit named Richie Mock. Armed with a staged sizzle reel and two fake recruiting websites, Mauk had set out to stage his D1 comeback. He approached every school on Playboy‘s Top Party Schools list for the past ten years.
“Honestly, I threw in Mizzou as a joke,” Mauk admitted afterward. “I neglected to consider the Tigers’ recent struggles with reading quarterbacks.”
Every school but one ignored Mauk’s fake offerings, but internal memos acquired via the Missouri Freedom of Information Act show the Mizzou athletics officials were hot to snap up the prospect. One memo alluded to the fact that Missouri recruiters had already identified one potential issue.
“This kid fits our style perfectly. He’ll slide right in when Lock leaves this spring. He already looks like a Tiger. We’ll fix the coke problem when he gets here. Do whatever it takes to get him. –JS”
Athletic Director Jim Sterk, reached at Michael Porter Jr.’s apartment where he is personally heating the hot stones Porter uses for his therapy, said ,”That JS could literally be anybody. You guys are always looking for a scandal. How do you work this (expletive) microwave?”
The shame doubled when Mizzou was forced to admit that it had hired Bibb County High School’s JV football coach, Jerry B. McLemore, as part of the agreement to get the QB. That contract was already signed before Mizzou realized Mock was actually Mauk.
McLemore said he’d never coached above the JV level, but he had some great ideas for the Tigers.
“Don’t let these pierced nipples fool you,” McLemore said. “I’m really excited to get to Columbia. I can coach up some boys fast.”
Upon learning of the hoax, Coach Odom took the Letter of Intent, set it on fire, raised two middle fingers in the air over his head, and screamed “(Expletive) everything. Seriously, just (expletive) it all!” He refused further comment as he left the Bibb County High School gym.
Told he could face legal action for the hoax, Mauk smiled, unlocked his iPhone and slid it across the table.
“Just hit the top contact in my favorites.”
The phone rang through to Springfield, Missouri’s Minnow and Gerode Law Firm, where a receptionist answered, “What now, Maty?”
Back in Columbia, Sterk said, “This never would have happened if I’d let Cuonzo do the football recruiting, too.”