Missouri Athletics Director Jim Sterk held a late afternoon press conference on Saturday to explain how Barry Odom’s firing unfolded and what’s next for the Tigers’ program.

Sterk said the decision came in the last 24 to 48 hours, and was supported by Chancellor Alexander Cartwright and UM System President Mun Choi. Sterk said he met with Odom Saturday morning to let him know they were making a change in the leadership of Mizzou football.

“This decision was not an easy one, but necessary,” Sterk said.

Sterk noted Odom’s long history with the program, and added, “It’s never easy to make a change, and (Odom has) poured a lot of blood, sweat and tears into this.”

Sterk said Mizzou hopes to make a hire in the next couple of weeks as Brick Haley is in charge on an interim basis. The program is aware of the transfer portal and early signing period. Sterk said Mizzou wouldn’t prefer an offensive-minded or defensive-minded coach, necessarily. Head-coaching experience is not required, but would be helpful.

“It depends on the candidate,” he said, and then added, “People get excited about scoring a lot of points.”

One key factor Sterk admitted was Missouri is about $5-6 million short of football ticket revenue to get back to 2014 levels.

Sterk was asked what happened to the team from 5 straight wins to 5 straight losses, and responded, “It’s still an unknown as I talk to coaches.”

Sterk said he expected assistant coaches would be hired elsewhere and therefore the buyout responsibility for Mizzou would diminish.