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Eli Drinkwitz


Sep 1, 2022; Columbia, Missouri, USA; Missouri Tigers head coach Eliah Drinkwitz watches warmups prior to a game against the Louisiana Tech Bulldogs at Faurot Field at Memorial Stadium. Credit: Jay Biggerstaff-USA TODAY Sports

Eli Drinkwitz was hired as the Missouri Tigers’ head coach prior to the 2020 season. Through 3 seasons, the Tigers have qualified for bowl games all 3 years.

However, the former Appalachian State head coach and long-time offensive coordinator has yet to earn his first bowl win in Columbia. In the pandemic-shortened 2020 season, the Tigers qualified for the Music City Bowl, but the game was not played due to COVID-19 concerns.

In 2021, the Tigers lost the Armed Forces Bowl and, in 2022, they fell in the Gasparilla Bowl.

Drinkwitz has finished each of his seasons at Mizzou with a record of exactly .500 in the regular season. The Tigers went 5-5 during the pandemic-shortened 2020 campaign. In 2021 and 2022, they posted identical 6-6 regular-season records before losing in bowl games.

Drinkwitz’s best season came in his 1 year at Appalachian State prior to heading to Columbia, where he led the Mountaineers to a 12-1 record in 2019, winning the Sun Belt Conference title that year. He left the program to take the head coaching job at Mizzou prior to the Mountaineers’ appearance in the New Orleans Bowl.

Drinkwitz has done some of his best work at Missouri on the recruiting trails. He has landed some top talent from the St. Louis area, including 5-star 2022 wide receiver (and East St. Louis native) Luther Burden, who was the second-highest-rated recruit ever to sign with the Tigers, per the 247Sports composite rankings. The only recruit rated higher than Burden in Mizzou history was fellow WR Dorial Green-Beckham.

Drinkwitz’s 2022 recruiting class finished No. 15 in the 247Sports composite rankings and was the best recruiting class in Mizzou history. That Mizzou recruiting class was led by Burden, but also featured 8 signees who were rated as 4-star recruits by the 247Sports composite rankings.

Whether or not Drinkwitz can develop that talent and start finishing with records above .500 will define his tenure in Columbia. Mizzou fans would also like to see their energetic and witty coach win a couple of bowl games in the near future.

Drinkwitz got his coaching start at the high-school level, working at a pair of high schools in Arkansas. At the SEC level, he has close connections to former Auburn head coaches Gus Malzahn and Bryan Harsin. In 2010 and 2011, Drinkwitz served on Gene Chizik’s Auburn staffs as a quality control coach. Malzahn was the offensive coordinator for those teams, and the Tigers won the national title in 2010.

He then served on Malzahn’s staff as the running backs coach at Arkansas State in 2012 before Malzahn left in 2013 to take the Auburn head coaching job. Harsin took over at Arkansas State in 2013 before leaving for Boise State in 2014. Drinkwitz worked with Harsin from 2013-15 at both schools.

After 3 years at NC State as Dave Doeren’s offensive coordinator, Drinkwitz made the jump to the head coaching ranks.

Eli Drinkwitz’s Coaching Experience

Head Coaching Record

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