Back in June, I listed what I felt were Missouri’s five most important players heading into 2017. No. 4 was Marcell Frazier, the Tigers’ only known quantity at defensive end. By all accounts, he’s taking on increased leadership quite well.
A great connection with first-year defensive line coach Brick Haley has allowed Frazier to take the next step and get after the quarterback, something he did very well over the final three games last season, registering 6.5 sacks and 7.5 tackles for loss during that span. For Frazier, he wants to continue the tradition of great play from Mizzou's D-Line while using his leadership to help a young group buy into what #DLineZOU is all about.
"Off the field, it's more about being a family, taking care of your brother and being a great teammate and if you are, how do you show that you are a great teammate?" Frazier said. "You set your goals and that's what you want, but when it actually happens, it's surreal. Like when Charles is standing at the podium like this guy is next, it puts a responsibility automatically on you from a national standpoint."
With Nate Howard’s status still uncertain and Frazier a mostly known quantity, you could have made a pretty good case for including a different end on the list. I would have probably selected Tre Williams simply because of recruiting rankings and whatnot, but another end is having a really nice camp so far.
Franklin Agbasimere is catching Odom’s attention. Agbasimere, a sophomore, converted from linebacker to defensive end in the spring. He missed the second half of the spring with a foot injury.
“If we played tomorrow, he’d play a lot,” Odom said. “He’s up to 250, 255 pounds. He’s got a tremendous first step. Initially, going into fall camp, I was thinking of designing some third-down packages for him. But now, after seven or eight days, he’s going to be a good first- and second-down player, too.”
Smash was maybe my favorite signee in the 2015 class because of his extreme diamond-in-the-rough nature, but as one might have expected, it’s taken him a couple of years to put a little bit of polish on his game. If he adapts well to his new position, he could provide a nice lift to the defensive line.
Meanwhile, a 2016 signee could be threatening to make waves up front on offense, be it Tre’Vour Simms or new center Trystan Castillo.
“It’s the same thing that Coach (Glen) Elarbee preached to me when he recruited me,” redshirt freshman Trystan Castillo said. “He doesn’t care who played the year before. He didn’t care who started last week, he didn’t care who started the day before. He’s going to take the five guys that compete and are playing the hardest.”
Castillo and Tre’Vour Simms, along with 2017 signee Yasir Durant, could all push some of the incumbents for playing time. [...]
Castillo spent much of his redshirt year at guard, but switched full-time to center in the spring. He could provide a strong push to current starter Jonah Dubinsky.
Competition, competition, competition.
Will fall camp in full swing, the player profiles are coming in hot and heavy. Today’s batch comes mostly from the receiving corps.
- The Post-Dispatch on Johnathon Johnson.
- The KC Star on Dimetrios Mason.
- The Missourian on Mason.
- The Post-Dispatch on Johnson and Mason.
- The Trib on Kendall Blanton.
- The KC Star on another player with a good case for going on the Most Important list: kicker Tucker McCann.
- Booches as the No. 14 college town meal in America? So says Andy Staples.
- Okay, this was funny.
We made a cheat sheet for all the students who haven't set foot into Mizzou Arena the past three seasons but want to fit in this year. pic.twitter.com/SVOOwUTlcw— The Antlers (@The_Antlers) August 10, 2017
- One of Mizzou’s greatest fans passed away on Tuesday.
- Former Mizzou guard Kim English was promoted from Tulsa assistant to Colorado assistant recently. He’s moving up in the coaching ranks pretty quickly.
- Mizzou Volleyball, your preseason No. 19 team according to the AVCA, will be on national television seven times this fall, while Mizzou Soccer will be on three times.