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2014 Missouri fall camp: Day 8 practice reports and scrimmage prep

Mizzou's first fall scrimmage begins this morning. The minor injuries are piling up, but ... knock on wood ... no major ones just yet. Eighteen days to South Dakota State.

Post-Dispatch: Mizzou Camp Monday Report

"We look at a lot of different things when we evaluate. We don’t just look at stats for a running back or quarterback. We look at the teams they’re going against. If you’re going against the first and second defense the whole time, it’s a lot different than going against the third and fourth defense the whole time. That grade might be really great, but there’s a lot of scenarios we look at in all those evaluations. That’s what I’ll do in the team meeting tonight. I’ll talk to the team, like I do before every first scrimmage, (and explain) what we’re trying to get out of what we’re looking at. We’re looking for the top five offensive linemen and the next five and the next two. The top 12 we’re going to work with. We do that for every position. They know what’s going on out there. I think educating them on how we analyze is really important. A guy won’t run in and say, ‘I got a 90-percent grade, so why am I not starting ahead of that guy there?’ Well, you went against the threes and fours and he went against the ones the the whole time."


The Trib (Behind the Stripes): Position-by-Position: What to Watch For in Missouri's 1st Scrimmage

BerkPrintzstresser: With their powers combined, they are Missouri's backup quarterback situation. We don't yet know whether Corbin Berkstresser or Eddie Printz will start the season as Maty Mauk's backup and -- to hear Berkstresser, Printz, offensive coordinator Josh Henson and Coach Gary Pinkel tell it -- the team doesn't either. Printz has the more precise arm, the more prototypical pocket-passer body and can get out of the pocket with his long strides when he needs to. Berkstresser might have a little more gunpowder in his cannon, can get yards between the tackles and has game experience as a starter in 2012. The three scrimmages will be crucial in which one gets the next call after Mauk. And, if the last two years are any indication, the winner could very well see the field at some point this year for meaningful snaps.

MUTIGERS.COM: Football Training Camp Report - Day Eight

QB Corbin Berkstresser made a couple of nice completions in two-minute work guiding the #2 offense against the #2 defense, as he hit WR Wesley Leftwich on a quick toss, and followed with a well-thrown deep in to WR Gavin Otte for a gain of around 20 yards, despite good coverage by DB Kenya Dennis.  LB Clarence Green also had a highlight in the series, as he recorded a pass break up when he dropped back in coverage...

Running backs

The Trib: Tigers banged up heading into first scrimmage

The running back depth could be especially thin tomorrow, as Pinkel said he thinks tailback Marcus Murphy will play at wide receiver for most of the scrimmage.

Senior wideout Darius White was also limited in practice today after tweaking his ankle, but he’s expected to play in the scrimmage.

Pinkel said the staff is looking to get 45 plays each for the first, second and third teams.

"The most important thing is getting young players ready to play," Pinkel said. "Get backup players ready to play." Injuries are "inevitable. It’s going to happen."

Receiving corps

Post-Dispatch: Mizzou Scrimmage Primer: 5 to watch

I found this Pinkel comment especially interesting: "You also have to project if you have a younger player against an older player in there, if that younger player, if he gets all this work, will he pass this guy up in four or five weeks? We have to project that. We do that a lot."

It’s been obvious at times that MU’s coaches will sometimes favor a young player over an older player at the same position before the younger player has necessarily stood out in practice — but I can’t recall Pinkel ever spelling out that decision process so candidly. In other words, take any one of the promising freshmen, from wideouts Nate Brown or Lawrence Lee or cornerback Cheadle or tight end Kendall Blanton. They don’t have to put up big numbers in the scrimmages or make highlight plays to surpass older veterans on the depth chart. If the coaches see a glimmer and expect those underclassmen to gradually outplay a veteran, they might see a promotion sooner than later.

Offensive line

The Trib (Behind the Stripes): Missouri Fall Camp Notes: The "Better Now than Later?" edition

At right tackle, junior Taylor Chappell has been taking McGovern's place.

Chappell is no stranger to injury -- having torn his ACL before the 2012 season -- but he's stayed healthy this camp.

"This is probably the healthiest he's been in three years," Pinkel said. "It allows us to look at game situations. You always have to have a third guard, a third tackle and a third center. You do that at every position. Who are the guys in the third team that you're going to move up into that slot if there is an injury, or you're getting ready in case there is one. It's all personnel stuff, evaluation stuff that we do."

Defensive line


PowerMizzou: Five Scrimmage Questions

Who is the future at linebacker? We wrote about all the candidates for a few spots earlier this week. With Donavin Newsom now questionable for the scrimmage due to an injury (an issue that has been all too common the last couple of years), there are now even more questions. Can Darvin Ruise or Clarence Green step forth and provide some veteran presence alongside Kentrell Brothers? Is it a younger guy like Eric Beisel? Definitely a position to keep an eye on during the scrimmage.


The Missourian: Several Missouri football players will miss first scrimmage

Team captain and senior starting safety Braylon Webb is still working through a shoulder injury as is fellow junior safety Cortland Browning. Sophomore tailback Morgan Steward is still bothered by a hip injury, and junior right tackle Connor McGovern continues to rehab his pectoral. The Missouri Athletics Department said these players will also be withheld from the scrimmage.

Of the eight injured Tigers, four are listed as starters coming out of spring practice.

Special teams


PowerMizzou: Monday Practice Photos
PowerMizzou: Sights & Sounds: Day 8

Mizzou Network: FALL CAMP: Pinkel Post-Practice Comments 8.11.14