Logan Cheadle (5'10, 180, So.)
2014: 0.5 tackles
Fullback U: It takes something special to play as a true freshman corner, and War Machine, er, Logan Cheadle, obviously displayed it. He's both mentally and physically mature enough to play; that makes him a huge asset for Cornell Ford and Barry Odom and sets him up very well to perhaps take over a starting role next year. He’s small(ish) and fast in a way that draws favorable comparisons to another Mizzou corner from the Kansas City area. I bet he’ll see even more playing time this year as the season goes on, possibly in a battle with John Gibson for the third corner spot.
AlaTiger: Cheadle has a lot of promise. In his second year in the program, I think we will see more of that promise come to fruition.
dcrockett17: He looks increasingly like a guy who is not gonna be denied. At minimum, you’d like to see him in the mix on special teams.
The Beef: Even before the departure of David Johnson, Logan had made his way to backing up Aarion Penton on one side (with Gibson, then Johnson behind Kenya Dennis on the other side). I fully expect Cheadle to get lots of time on special teams but also some considerable snaps in live play. Does he challenge Gibson next year for Dennis’ spot? Perhaps, though it would take a decent leap to get there. Having him be the Gibson of next year is not a bad place to be, though.
jaeger: Mr. Cheadle looks like a sophomore who’s ready to make an impact. The way he moved up the depth chart and stayed there -- especially before Johnson's departure -- is a very good thing. This is another guy who’d probably have been a starter on a lot of Pinkel’s previous teams.
Bill C.: Typically when Mizzou plays you as a true freshman, that either means the Tigers need immediate help, or they will the next season. We've seen the understudy-to-starter transition many times. But it speaks to Mizzou's corner depth that the coaching staff felt the need to play him last year, and he's still only the No. 4 corner. We've seen enough of John Gibson III to know that he's a solid option; if Cheadle were to pass him, too, that would say far more about him than Gibson.
By the way, a note to Don Cheadle: you're welcome to our tailgate any time you want to come to Columbia to watch your cousin play. You can have some of my beer.
Finis Stribling IV (5'11, 175, RSFr.)
Bill C.: Stribling was a we-do-what-we-do recruit. He committed to Mizzou in May 2013, nine months before signing day; he had no other major offers to report, but he checked all of Missouri's boxes in terms of athleticism and physical potential. He wasn't even given the charity third star that a lot of Mizzou commits receive from Rivals and others later in the recruiting process. But lo and behold, it turns out he is indeed a ridiculous athlete, and he seems to be catching on when it comes to actually playing football.
Barring injury, Mizzou probably won't ask much of Stribling in 2015, not with three upperclassmen and Cheadle ahead of him on the depth chart. But ... well, there are three upperclassmen ahead of him. Dennis will leave after 2015, and Penton and Gibson will leave after 2016 (unless Penton explodes in 2015 and leaves early, I guess). By the time it's his turn, Stribling could be polished and ready.
AlaTiger: Finis may contribute on special teams.
The Beef: EXPLOSIVE is the first word I can think of to describe the finest named player on the team. Special teams could be a good launching point (pun intended) for him as he starts to see the field
jaeger: All-Name Team 2015 for sure, and he’s got all sorts of athleticism. He’ll probably be a guy who plays some on special teams and gets brought along a bit more slowly so he can step up after some of the guys ahead of him depart.
Fullback U: Still a year away from being a contributor, Finis (pronounced Fine-is) Stribling IV has definite upside, proving to be a classic example of Gary Pinkel’s "diamond in the rough" style athletes.