2014 Missouri spring football: Spring game links

Dak Dillon-USA TODAY Sports

Consider this your Easter Sunday live thread. For those who celebrate, have a great day. (And for those who don't, have a great day.)

We'll have position-by-position breakdowns and links in the coming days. For now, here are some videos and more general links.

MUtigers.com: Late TD Lifts Reserves Over Starters in Black & Gold Game

On Mizzou One's opening drive, Maty Mauk set the tone with 38-yard seam pass to Darius White. Tailback Marcus Murphy caught a pass out of the backfield and knifed his way into the red zone, but the starters were forced to settle for an Andrew Baggett 30-yard field goal to make it 14-3.

The starting defensive unit got a quick stop on the following possession as Shane Ray picked up a sack. Then Mauk cashed in again, driving down the field to set up another field goal. After a 12-yard screen pass to Bud Sasser, Mauk lofted a pass up to Jimmie Hunt, who spun out of a tackle and bullied his way to the three-yard line. Baggett's 21-yard field goal pulled Mizzou One closer, 14-6.

MUtigers.com: Postgame Quotes - Black & Gold Spring Scrimmage

Head Coach Gary Pinkel

On Redshirt Sophomore QB Maty Mauk's play during spring...

"He is a lot better of a player than he was before, and he was pretty good last year. I think for quarterbacks things slow down the more experience you get because you see more. Being a redshirt and still very, very young, he just knows the offense better and reads defenses better which is typical after playing a third of a season. He is a great competitor, he has a lot of confidence and is a great leader. We are very fortunate to have a young player of his caliber."

On Freshman OL Mike Fairchild...

"He is a very good athlete, moves very well, he's very physical, a very good run blocker...typically for young players it's about pass protection and going against (Redshirt Junior Defensive Lineman) Shane Ray and (Senior Defensive Lineman) Markus Golden, you learn real quick. There is an example of a guy who has done very well in the spring and if he keeps getting stronger he very well might have a chance to be there."

On Junior DB Kenya Dennis...

"He has done a very good job. He came in here as a very good athlete and he really adjusted to being here very quickly. Sometimes it takes a little longer for some players, but he really did a good job."

On Sophomore TE Sean Culkin...

"His blocking has improved tremendously and he has really great hands. He has a block on one of his hands because he has a cast on because he broke it. He is catching the ball pretty well with a cast on. The good news is that cast is going to come off and he is still doing a lot of good things."

On the offensive line...

"We are coming around a little bit, it takes some time and we lost some pretty good players. We also moved some people around and I really think that we are doing well."

On Senior DL Markus Golden...

"Great progress, he has great strength. He and Shane Ray are both high level guys."

On the new stadium construction...

"The program is building, we are in the SEC and it shows when you see the cranes. That's the way it should be. Things have dramatically changed since I got here 14 years ago and this is just another phase of it."

The Missourian: Missouri football looks forward after closing spring practice with Black and Gold Game

The diamonds of Pinkel's brand new Southeastern Conference Eastern Division Champions ring were hard to ignore.

Pinkel only breaks out the jewelry in specific circumstances. He was the first to receive the freshly designed championship ring on Friday. He showed it off to his friends, and on Saturday was showing it off to recruits. After wearing it for a few days, Pinkel will put the ring back in its box and never touch it again.

"I want another one," he said.

PowerMizzou: PHOTOS: Black & Gold Gallery
PowerMizzou: PMTV-HD: Spring Game Highlights
Fox Sports MW: Mizzou's Black and Gold football game was a welcome relief from a 'rough semester'

"It's been a rough semester," Bohem sighed. "For sure.

"And it sucks. And it's not fun. But you know, you go through adversity and you count on the team and you show how tough of a team you are when you bounce back from that adversity, and I think we did a great job of that."

So, for a few hours, it was about football again, and the usual sports-section fodder of how coach Gary Pinkel figures to replace 27 of last fall's 31 touchdown receptions; the SEC Defensive Player of the Year on one end of his d-line (Michael Sam); a sure-fire first-round NFL draft pick on the other end (Kony Ealy); a veteran, physical cornerback (E.J. Gaines); a folk hero at tailback (Henry Josey); and his quarterback (James Franklin).

If Saturday was any indication -- and with spring games, who really knows -- the latter figures to be the easiest.

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