One of the larger areas of concern for Missouri heading into 2017 was the situation at cornerback, where the Tigers had to replace both starters (Aarion Penton and John Gibson) and returned only one player (Logan Cheadle) with significant experience.
Back in June, I named two sophomore corners (DeMarkus Acy and Christian Holmes) among Missouri’s most important players. It is now just Acy. Head coach Barry Odom revealed that Holmes recently suffered a shoulder injury and will miss much or all of the 2017 season after undergoing surgery on it.
Odom says it's not certain CB Christian Holmes will miss the season but he'll be out extensively after having shoulder surgery.— Dave Matter (@Dave_Matter) August 22, 2017
Odom said it's not necessarily season-ending, but Holmes would have to be a quick healer.— Tod Palmer (@todpalmer) August 22, 2017
This technically has no impact on the starting lineup; by most indications, Cheadle had an excellent fall camp and was appearing likely to start opposite Acy. But Holmes was an obvious No. 3 on the list and was likely to see significant playing time. It is a serious blow to depth at the position.
Missouri also had junior Finis Stribling IV and redshirt freshman Jerod Alton at the position, along with true freshmen Terry Petry and Adam Sparks. Both Petry and Sparks are listed under 175 pounds (Sparks is 172, Petry 160) and might need to add strength before becoming regulars in the SEC.
It’s also possible that 6’1, 190-pound senior Anthony Hines could move back from safety to corner. Sophomore T.J. Warren might be another candidate, though he has bulked up (he’s listed at 5’11, 210) and moved to the nickel linebacker position.
Holmes is a true sophomore, so he will take a redshirt and will have three years of eligibility remaining. His future is still bright, but now all eyes are on other youngsters to see who can step up.
In other injury news, junior slot receiver Richaud Floyd remains in concussion protocol, senior tailback Ish Witter has a mild hamstring injury, junior Nate Strong is recovering from a knee injury, and freshman tight end Logan Christopherson has an ankle injury, which means a likely redshirt for him.