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What Mizzou players had to say: Friday, August 11th edition

Words from Harrison Mevis, Kris Abrams-Draine, Mookie Cooper, and Xavier Delgado,

NCAA Football: New Mexico State at Missouri Denny Medley-USA TODAY Sports

Kickoff between Mizzou and South Dakota is 20 days away. For the Tigers they are in the dog days of summer, going through a tough grind in the Missouri heat in fall camp.

“You gotta keep pushing through, this is kind of our edge week, our grit week, so we gotta keep pushing through. They were talking about our core values, emotional cosistency, detail, grit and execution we just gotta keep grinding,” — Graduate Student offensive lineman Xavier Delgado.

More from Xavier Delgado

On the offensive line depth: “We talk about iron sharpens iron, there’s always gonna be competition at the end of the day. You gotta establish that starting five and who’s gonna be the best five we can put out on Saturday so its always good to have competition and it pushes each other.”

The difference so between this offensive line compared to last year: “Just kind of playing as one, just kind of the cohesion, the camaraderie in our group is a lot better than it was last year and kind of what I said before is that mentality, just having a better mentality coming into practice and all that and just working as one.”

On Connor Tollison’s progression: (He’s) just kinda taken more of a leadership role at center. Centers are kind of our quarterback and he’s definitely taken that and elevated his game. I think he’s definitely gotten stronger and just has a better mentality for sure and that’s great to see from him.”

And what about 6-foot-6, 369-pound freshman Logan Reichert: “That’s probably the biggest human being I’ve ever seen on the football field besides maybe Jordan Davis. He’s a big dude but he’s a great dude. He’s gonna get good, he’s just gotta take time to really understand the playbook and stuff like that and just get confidence in his play.”

How is it playing with offensive line coach Brandon Jones?: “He’s a great teacher; I’m really enjoying my time with Coach Jones so far… He breaks everything down for us, he’s a really good coach and I’m having a really good time working with him.”

Kris Abrams-Draine

What wide receivers have stood out: “Theo Wease, I’ve been guarding him, but a young guy, Marquis (Johnson) he’s got good speed, he’s got good hands, he’s been standing out to me.”

The positives of facing Theo Wease every day: “Everybody at receiver in the SEC is Theo Wease basically. Everybody got that speed, they got that size.”

Advice to the younger guys: “Take it day-by-day because it flies by. I remember when I was a freshman and now I’m a senior so just take it day by day and enjoy it.”

Speaking of younger guys how has freshman Shamar McNeil been doing: “I’ve been seeing him growing day-by-day. He ask me stuff and it just be the little things that you can do and just turn your head around a little bit earlier and you’ll make the play but he’s got good size, good speed. I think he’s gonna be a good cornerback for Mizzou.

The importance of continuity in the secondary: “I feel like we when we see a play call, we all gonna be on the same page, even if we get the wrong play call, we all gonna be on the same page at the end of the day. J.C (Carlies) he’s like a field general, he’s gonna get everybody lined up.”

Mookie Cooper

On the quarterback battle: “I let the coaches handle it. I’m just trying to get the best balls out there so we might give a little comment on who did give us some good balls, but that’s up to the coaches.”

Cooper’s thoughts on the receiver room and depth: “I’ve felt like this is the most loaded room we’ve had since I’ve been here.”

How he’s approached being a leader for the young guys: “It’s been cool. I’m probably the goofy leader so I don’t really try to be too serious with them. I try to be what I can in a playful way and just try to be me and not like that guy who switch it up for the coaches.”

What he’s done to improve his game this offseason: “I just wanted to be more in shape this year. I know for myself last year, I got tired, my body language showed sometimes...that’s probably my biggest thing is just trying to do as much work now whenever I can to stay in shape.”

Harrison Mevis

What he’s keyed in on mechanically to improve his game: “Technically, really focused on kickoffs this year. Kickoffs, just being smooth and really part of its ball contact needs to be where it needs to be...if you guys see it flying then we’re in business.”

Comments on his new placeholder: “We’re having a little competition with holding. I think competition is good, Brady’s really progressed and he’s done a really good job and (Luke) Bauer as well.”

With kicker being an important position, who does Mevis study from the professional ranks?: “There’s a little bit from everyone. I like to watch guys like Harrison Butker, who’s super explosive, Justin Tucker is just super consistent and you kinda go back a couple years, Stebastian Janikowsi right? a big guy, big frame and stuff that I can take from him, and even mentality wise like Evan McPherson.”