Mizzou Links, 8-11-08

 The Missourian takes a look back at Fan Day...as does the Post-Dispatch...

 We start with this fantastic story from the Trib.  With Mizzou yet again appearing to have found a complete and total sleeper star in WR Jerrell Jackson, Dave Matter looks at some of the other total sleepers the coaches have unearthed.  We would be NOWHERE without the staff's ability to mine the diamonds in the rough...

 The KC Star put up two stories over the weekend...first, talking about Mizzou's stout overall defense, and second, talking about Mizzou's cornerbacks...

When Moore moves up, he and Gettis and Bridges make sure they catch each other’s eyes.

It’s an unspoken exchange of assurance from the cornerbacks to one of the biggest impact defenders in the Big 12 Conference.

“We try to communicate with Will right before each play starts,” Bridges said, “so he’ll be able to cheat to that side. He doesn’t have to worry about anybody getting over the top of him.”

 The Trib checks in on punter Jake Harry.  I harken back to when I saw him warming up before the OU game last year...I still say the lefty knuckler action on his serve will cause a fumble or two this year...his ball has some weird action to it...

 Ever wonder how a play goes from Dave Christensen's head to Chase Daniel's hands?  PowerMizzou look at the anatomy of a play.

 Dave Matter empties the notebook from the weekend practices...gotta love these quotes...

“It must come from our Marine coach. It’s really just the mentality we have in the program. The older guys have developed it over the years that we just have a no excuses policy. It just kind of rubs off on everybody to get back quickly as possible.” — linebacker Van Alexander on his position group’s resiliency

“He’s the best of the best. He must drink some certain water back there because he’s pretty good.” — director of football operations Barry Odom on team trainer Rex Sharp

 Gotta love how giddy Gary Pinkel gets at the thought of having a good long snapper...

 The P-D checks in on Blaine Gabbert's progress...

Gabbert has been working with the third team in practice. Like any newcomer, he has had his share of fumbled exchanges and errant throws. But he has shown flashes of his promise with sharp completions and a commanding presence in the pocket.

Quarterbacks coach David Yost has been impressed with the manner in which Gabbert has grasped the system.

"He's been able to step right into our no-huddle offense and been able to run it and execute it and not be out there with his head spinning, which happens to a lot of freshmen, especially at the quarterback position," Yost said.

Layers of knowledge are incorporated into the no-huddle attack. Gabbert can interpret coaches' hand signals, Yost said. Knowing terminology, he doesn't have to ask what a dropback concept like "smash" means. More complicated challenges remain. He needs to learn, for example, how to react to various defensive looks.

"Once he learns the game and figures out where to go with the football," Daniel said, "then he'll start relaxing, and then he'll actually start being a player."

Then Gabbert can apply the intangibles he has taken from Daniel. "You've always got to be vocal and encouraging your teammates," Gabbert said, "keeping them up all the time and just really being a positive enforcer."

 Finally...Sheldon Richardson, he of recent "I'm visiting Miami!" fame, enjoyed his latest unofficial visit to Columbia this weekend.  He said he'd be visiting Mizzou for every home game in the fall, which is nice to hear...I figure the only way we don't get him is if we have a few letdowns during the season and Miami goes 10-2 or something...

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