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2014 Missouri Fall Camp: Line shifts, big plays, and OMG so much weight

Missouri's offensive linemen keep trading positions, the wide receivers aren't worried about the deep ball, Josh Augusta is primed for a breakout year, and HOLY CRAP OUR PLAYERS ARE STRONG.

New jerseys! (not really)
New jerseys! (not really)
Jack Peglow

SOURCES: It's still hot at practice.

Offensive Line

Missouri's offensive line rotation has been a big chinese fire drill all camp, and it doesn't look like that will be changing any time soon.

Dave Morrison @ The Tribune: Camp Update

Junior Taylor Chappell, after moving to right tackle to right guard last week, is back at right tackle, backing up Connor McGovern and leaving Mitch Hall alone atop of the right guard depth.

"Hall's a lot more comfortable inside there, where Chappell I think is going to be the third tackle there fighting for one of those tackle spots," offensive line coach A.J. Ricker said. "I think he's more of an outside guy, to be honest with you. The more you can do, the longer you stick around, somebody once told me. You've got to be able to play them all. He's kind of a utility guy right now."

Redshirt freshman Nate Crawford has played himself into the mix at left tackle. Crawford, who moved over from defensive line in the summer, started camp at guard but has worked up to second-string behind Morse, supplanting true freshman Mike Fairchild.

Ricker said Crawford is more physically advanced at this point, while Fairchild is further along mentally.

Wide Receivers

I see I wasn't the only one to notice the lack of explosive passing plays from Maty Mauk.

David Morrison @ The Tribune: Missouri Fall Camp Notes: The "Grab Bag" edition

Senior Darius White said the lack of successful long balls in the first two scrimmages is not too worrisome to the Tigers' receiving corps: "The deep shots are going to come. You know Maty is going to put it out there. And sometimes when they're not coming, we're going against our defense. I feel like our defense is one of the number one defenses in the country. You've got 11 guys running to the ball that are powerful and explosive. Every play is not going to be there for us.

White said Mauk has been able to build up that trust factor in teammates in different ways than James Franklin last year: "Don't get me wrong. James was a great dude, a great leader. But Maty's more with everyone. He tries to get to know everyone, hangs out with everyone, tries to make everyone better on the field. James is more secretive, live a private guy. Everyone's different."

Thats... not surprising at all.

Dave Matter @ STLToday: Mizzou looks for spark in passing game

With Thursday's scrimmage the final chance this preseason for backup players to audition for expanded roles, MU still needs to sort out its receiver rotation. J'Mon Moore, a redshirt freshman, has been Sasser's top backup but has been quiet in the scrimmages, catching five passes for 37 yards. Wesley Leftwich, a junior, has caught three passes for 63 yards and a touchdown as White's backup. Missouri coach Gary Pinkel has said a few of the team's four freshman receivers could play this year. Nate Brown, a backup at the Z position, has sic scrimmage catches for 47 yards.

Mizzou has other ways to jolt the passing game without relying on the outside targets. Tight ends Seas Culkin and Jason Reese have been used more as downfield threats since the start of preseason camp. tailback Marcus Murphy has spent time at the slot receiver position to add another playmaker to the group.

Anyway, Jimmie Hunt's hamstring injury doesn't seem like it's serious.


David Morrison @ The Tribune: Missouri Fall Camp Notes: The "Grab Bag" edition

Junir Ian Simon is moving back to safety after starting at nickelback last season. Senior Braylon Webb said the transition is going well: "He's a smart guy. He's kind of like a Matt White. He knows where to be and when to be there. He brings that element to the game. He just knows how to be in the right place at the right time. And he's passionate about the game, too. He has a lot of energy. He's a fiery guy.

Defensive Line

Defensive line coach Craig Kuligowski has big plans for BIG BEAR AKA Josh Augusta.

David Morrison @ The Tribune: Missouri Fall Camp Notes: The "Grab Bag" edition

"I can't wait until we get to a game situation and watch him run real fast and blow up that pile," Kuligowski said. "Watch them move like bowling pins."

Kuligowski said Augusta is up in weight this season but is in the best shape of his life and has increased his bench press by more than 100 pounds.

Whooooooooooooo, nelly. Speaking of benching...

Holy Crap

David Morrison @ The Tribune: Missouri Fall Camp Notes: The "Grab Bag" edition

Morse said he bench-pressed 485 pounds after Connor McGovern strained his pec going for 495 and wanted to shoot for Jack Meiners' record of 505, but Pat Ivey put a stop to it: "I'm watching it the whole time thinking, 'Oh, damn.' So I said, 'Drop 10 pounds.' I got super gyped up for it. It went up really easily. I thought I was going to do the school record, but it's just not worth it. Connor's a strong dude so you know that, if he can't get up a weight, there's something wrong. I dropped it 10 pounds, I raised it and the whole place went insane. Coach Ivey said, 'No more.' Everybody was like, 'Put them up!' And I said, 'Yeah, let's go!' And they were just like, 'Nope.'"