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What contingency plans exist among Mizzou’s pass-catchers?

Here are today’s Mizzou Links.

Scroll down and you’ll notice a variation of that question pops up in a number of pieces pecked out by scribes patrolling the practice fields in Columbia.

And even if fall camp is a time where (guarded) optimism usually pervades coverage, it’s a topic well worth exploring.

Nagging injuries dogged Emmanuel Hall throughout his career in Columbia, robbing him of four games last season. Meanwhile, Albert Okwuegbunam, who lost four games to a shoulder injury in 2018, frayed nerves when he went down with a knee sprain in practice last week. Had the junior tight end been sidelined for an extended period of time, quarterback Kelly Bryant’s list of proven targets would have been murky.

On paper, coach Barry Odom brings back roughly two-thirds of production at wide receiver and tight end, while the average yards per catch among that group (12.17) is equivalent to last season. In theory, Okwuegbunam’s decision to return and Johnathon Johnson’s presence assured a modicum of stability at both positions.

But what if both are hobbled? The Tigers’ next leading receiver is Jalen Knox (27 catches, 419 yards and 3 TDs), followed by fellow sophomore Dominic Gicinto, who hauled in 15 catches for 171 yards. Put another way, catastrophic injury luck quickly saps half of that returning output and could leave Odom and offensive coordinator Derek Dooley casting about for alternatives.

Knox, Jonathan Nance, and Kam Scott are the likeliest contenders on the outside, but will a clear pecking order emerge? And where does Oregon transfer Alex Ofodile end up when all the sorting is done?

In the end, I doubt many MU fans want to see a stress test play out in the particular region of the depth chart.

Yesterday at Rock M

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