The Associated Press ranked the Top 100 NCAA football programs of all time, and Missouri ranked 35th.
The AP released their rankings the Top 100 NCAA football programs of all time this week, and in what had to be at least a little bit of a surprise for fans who have been following the program for the past 30-40 years, the Missouri Tigers came in at 35th. That’s not to say the Tigers haven’t had some great seasons over the years, but considering that they went 13 straight years without a bowl appearance from 1984-96, failed to appear in a BCS bowl during the entire BCS era, and have yet to win a conference championship game, it was somewhat unexpected to see them ranked as one of the best 40 college football programs in the history of the sport. The AP’s justification of their ranking system is as follows:
"“To determine the all-time Top 25, the AP formula counted poll appearances (one point) to mark consistency, No. 1 rankings (two points) to acknowledge elite programs and gave a bonus for AP championships (10 points).”"
In what’s probably a more accurate reading of how the AP views Mizzou compared to its modern-day counterparts, the Tigers were ranked 10th among the 14 SEC programs (ranking ahead of only Mississippi State, South Carolina, Kentucky, and Vanderbilt.
The Tigers ranked just behind West Virginia and BYU, and slightly ahead of Purdue and Minnesota. When you break it all down, those are also programs that seem to be ranked in the back end of the Top 25 on an almost-annual basis, just like Mizzou, but rarely if ever ascend to a championship level of play. With that thought in mind, maybe the AP’s ranking of Mizzou is just right.