1984 Tigers
(Authentic Reproduction)



Once again the Mizzou helmet underwent a slight alteration. Long time fans would have preferred a return to the official school color of old gold but instead they were greeted with the black helmet with Green Bay gold one-inch center stripe, one-half-inch black gap, one-half-inch white flanking stripes and the block “M” with unequal width to the legs, still in Green Bay gold but now with a black outline to go with the white border that was unveiled in ’83. Any complaints about the helmet color paled in comparison to the criticism that Powers couldn’t win enough important games, couldn’t win when it counted, and couldn’t win enough to earn Missouri entry to the elite bowl games. This came to haunt him after the bottom fell out in a 3-7-1 season in ’84. Beating up a poor 1-10 Colorado team was the highlight with no victories over quality opponents and the Tigers did this with the best offense in the Big Eight! Powers alternated QB’s Marlon Adler and versatile Warren Seitz who filled in at various positions when needed, a quality that earned him a shot as both a tight end and wide receiver with the Steelers and Giants in 1986 and ’87 and both QB’s were productive. Soph TB Jon Redd was the team’s leading rusher with 668 yards and All Conference. Both WR George Shorthose who would make the Chiefs’ squad in ’85 and massive OT John Clay were also All Big Eight, with Clay destined to grow into the Raiders number-one pick in 1987. Soph DT Michael Scott led the defense that gave up thirty points or more in seven of their eleven games and though the ink was still a bit damp on Powers’ new contract extension, he was ushered out at the end of the year. Other than a one-year stint in the early 2000’s as the head coach of a St. Louis-based indoor football league team, Powers was through with coaching when he departed the Columbia campus. He became a successful businessman and watched as former Missouri linebacker and Pittsburgh Steelers’ defensive coordinator Woody Widenhofer was hired in his place.


As a former Devine player, Widenhofer was a popular choice and had the pedigree of having followed his stint with the Steelers as the head coach of the USFL Oklahoma Outlaws. He wanted to change the Missouri uniforms to more closely mimic the appearance of the Pittsburgh Steelers but equipment manager Bob Stanley reminded him that his intentions were admirable, but that it should have been obvious that the Tigers “were not as good as the Steelers!” Still it was hoped that the usually talented Tigers could finally break through and become a team that could compete annually for a top ten spot on the national charts. It didn’t happen as Widenhofer lasted but four seasons and went a disastrous 1-10 in ’85, and then followed with 3-8, 5-6, and 3-7-1 seasons. To the relief of many long-time fans, Widenhofer returned the uniform and helmet colors to the more traditional look. The black helmet again sported the old gold one-inch center stripe with the one-half-inch black gap, and white one-half-inch flanking stripes and the Missouri “M” on each side was the previously used white block style with the legs of uneven width. After Widenhofer’s four seasons, Bob Stull was hired and averaged three wins per year in his five years in the top post. It wasn’t until 1994 that significant changes were seen. Veteran coach Larry Smith had a rocky start but by 1997 had produced winning teams, returning the Mizzou program to the bowl scene. In 2001, Gary Pinkel, a former Washington assistant who had established Toledo as a solid MAC power took the helm and has kept the Tigers competitive and primed for upsets every season. The 2007 season was extremely exciting as the Missouri Tigers competed for the national championship and gave fans a thrill every week.

If interested in any of these Mizzou helmets please click on the photos below.