It's not too big a deal that Missouri defensive end Brad Madison injured himself in practice last Friday, since his broken middle finger won't keep him out of the lineup when the Tigers take on Iowa in the Insight Bowl Dec. 28.
But it certainly won't help the Tigers for their leader in sacks to play with a plate in his dominant hand, and the injury must sting Mizzou fans even worse when they read how it happened :
Madison broke the middle finger on his right hand in a practice scuffle ... Madison and senior defensive tackle Bart Coslet exchanged punches on two occasions during the practice and ultimately, after the second fracas, three teammates restrained Coslet from continuing the confrontation.If it seems a little late in the year for the kind of overheated practice-field brawlin' that typically takes place during fall two-a-days, consider that head coach Gary Pinkel wasn't on hand to view Madison's and Coslet's shenanigans, having flown to New York to take part in the day's opening ceremony at NASDAQ.
The odds that either Madison's injury or one less-than-focused practice has any substantial impact on the Insight outcome are negligible. But it's also not the best statement about the seriousness of the Tigers' attitude towards their bowl game that the mice start playing games with each other's health the moment the cat steps away.