Jacquies Smith's TD turned the tide against K-State and now has fans looking forward to bigger and better things. (Photo by Parker Eshelman, Columbia Tribune.)

Seconds after Jacquies Smith’s 53-yard scoop-and-score Saturday, there seemed to be a collective sigh from Missouri Tiger fans.  The Smith touchdown marked the turning point in the K-State game and Tiger fans began to breath easier.  “We’re back,” we said.

A quarter and a half later, Mizzou had officially improved to 8-2.  The losing streak, if you can call two games a streak, was over.  With only Iowa State and kU remaining on Missouri’s schedule, many fans have gone ahead and penciled in our Tigers as 10-2.

These fans wonder aloud and on message boards things like, “What bowl possibilities are there for us when we’re 10-2 and 6-2 in the Big 12?  Cotton Bowl?  Surely we wouldn’t fall to the Insight Bowl.  Even so, at least we won 10 games this year.”

All of these things are good conversation starters except for one thing: Missouri isn’t 10-2 yet.  Mizzou is 8-2. Potentially, it could finish 2010 with the same disappointing record it finished 2009: 8-5.  Granted, if I were a betting man, I would bet Missouri beats Iowa State and kU.  In fact, I’d bet Mizzou beats both those teams handily.  Yet, I also would have bet the Tigers would beat Texas Tech.  I would have bet Texas would be better than 4-6.  I would have bet that Oklahoma State wouldn’t start the season 9-1.

Jack Trice stadium hasn’t exactly been the host of a lot of good memories for Tiger fans.  Missouri is only 2-3 in Ames since 2000 and one of those wins came in overtime.  Meanwhile who knows what can happen against the beakers? Granted, those losers are playing football that’s as ugly as their ’09 border showdown uni’s, but still, anything can happen.  I don’t need to remind people of 2008.

Jeez, those were ugly.

Two weeks from now, Missouri should be sitting at 10-2 and preparing for what we all hope will be a pretty legitimate bowl game.  However, before they’re 10-2, the Tigers have two games to play.  Should they be 10-2?  Absolutely.  The only thing is, Mizzou isn’t there quite yet.