The projected starting five, from left to right, goes Tyler Howell, Kevin Pendleton, Samson Bailey, Alec Abeln and Paul Adams. That’s the same starting lineup from the spring game.
"I’m excited about it. We’re having a really good camp so far," Abeln said. "The front five guys – Tyler, Kevin, Sam, myself and Paul – are really gelling well together. It’s been fun so far." [...]
While Howell, a junior college transfer, and Bailey are preparing to take their first Division I snaps as offensive linemen, sophomores Pendleton and Adams began seeing snaps as backups toward the end of last season.
"That was valuable, so valuable," Pendleton said, "and we really appreciated the opportunity, and we’re looking forward to building on it this year."
hose on the front five and their cast of reserve underclassmen understand they’re the team’s most unproven position group — and perhaps the entire season’s fulcrum. A sturdy line could revive a running game, which ranked among the nation’s worst last year, and protect the pocket to allow a functional passing game. A porous line will trigger flashbacks to 2015.
No pressure, right?
"They’ve developed a lot more physical presence, which is something we’ve been on them (about) since we got here in January," offensive coordinator Josh Heupel said. "They’re starting to play more confident as well."
"He’s been a blessing to the room because he’s our only senior and he’s seen so many different things," redshirt sophomore offensive lineman Kevin Pendleton said. "He’s played in a very tough league, he’s played against some good guys at a good school and I can’t wait to see him push some guys and compete with us."
For Stannard, coming to Missouri meant coming home, which he said "is amazing." In 2011, Stannard graduated from Rock Bridge High School after playing for former coach A.J. Ofodile — who’s now Missouri’s recruiting coordinator — and his only offer coming out of high school was from Memphis. Who was their primary recruiter? Former Memphis defensive coordinator and current Missouri coach Barry Odom.
More from camp
On St. Louis recruits spurning Mizzou
PowerMizzou's Gabe Dearmond looked into the numbers regarding Mizzou's success with St. Louis-area recruits as compared to Kansas City-area guys and other Missouri prospects. Spoiler: It's good when great talent emerges from small towns.
Mizzou Hoops heads home
You obviously can't take much from the results of this trip (as Sam has been so rudely reminding us on Twitter, ahem), but it seemed to go as well as you could hope. Young guys got experience, everybody bonded, nobody got hurt (as far as I can tell) ... that's kind of the reason you take these trips.