Kicking Off with Barry Odom

A Q&A with new Mizzou football coach and CAFNR alum

The University of Missouri’s new head football coach, Barry Odom, received a BS in Ag in 1999 and an MS Ed in 2004 from Mizzou. Recently he answered a few questions for our alumni about his time in CAFNR and at Mizzou as a student and what it means to him to be back leading the football team here.

Barry Odom with his wife, Tia, and children. Photo courtesy Mizzou Football.Barry Odom with his wife, Tia, and children. Tia is a 1999 graduate of the University of Missouri in family and consumer sciences education. Photo courtesy Mizzou Football.

Question: What are some of your favorite memories or takeaways of your time at CAFNR?

Answer: I really enjoyed my classes. It seemed like a very close community built around the atmosphere created by the advisors, professors and teaching assistants to provide each student with a platform to succeed. The people (students and faculty) make CAFNR a special department!

Q: How has your CAFNR experience influenced your life and/or career?

A: I realized early on in college that every class I had would at some point have an impact on my working career. Dr. Jim Spain provided me with a challenging schedule that allowed me to grow and realize the different career paths I could pursue through CAFNR.

Q: How do you like to stay involved with CAFNR and/or Mizzou as an alum?

A: I was fortunate enough to attend the Ag Unlimited event this year. It was a great experience and representation of what CAFNR is about. The relationships that I formed as a student at Mizzou are one of the most valued components of my college experience. The people at Mizzou/CAFNR are what set it apart!

Q: What does it mean to you to be back as head football coach at your alma mater?

A: It is an honor and a privilege to have the opportunity to be the head coach at my alma mater. I understand what this institution and our football program means to our students, alumni, fans and the people of Missouri. I take the responsibility of leading this program very seriously and want to do everything I can to represent Mizzou with class.

Q: What can your fellow alumni expect from Mizzou football this fall?

A: Our goal is to put a team on the field that reflects the culture and values of the people of Missouri and will make them proud. Our advantage will be in outworking our opponents. We are going to preach toughness every day to our guys and we are going to compete with integrity and class.

Q: How important are alumni/fans to the football team’s success?

A: The support of our alumni and fans is a critical component to our success. This program has accomplished a lot over the last 10 years, but I believe there’s an even higher level of success we can reach. In order to do that, it’s going to take all of us. We’re competing and recruiting against some of the top programs in the country in the SEC and it’s really important that our fans take ownership in serving as ambassadors for our program and supporting our student-athletes. We certainly appreciate everything they have done and continue to do to make Mizzou great!