Ever wondered what a Mizzou team that was comprised of only Missouri kids would look like? Or wonder how good an only-Texan Mizzou squad would do? Well, you’re in luck! This offseason, the Rock M Masthead is assembling the best team of Mizzou players by state that they graduated high school from. We compiled a list of the significant starters on every team from the year 2000 on and voted on the best players at their position group in order to create three “All-State” Mizzou squads: Team Missouri, Team Texas, and Team USA. Over the next nine weeks you’ll read about these Mizzou Greats that hailed from the respective regions and, hopefully, come away impressed with just how good these fictional teams could actually be.
Missouri’s claims of being “Tight-End U” are on full display as we vote for some of the best to play the position over the past twenty years.
Quick! Come up with the entire list of Missouri pass-catchers selected earlier in the NFL Draft than Michael Egnew over the last 20 years.
It shouldn’t take you very long. There’s only one name on the list: Jeremy Maclin.
Egnew, for my money, is one of the more underrated Mizzou players of the Gary Pinkel era. He led all tight ends nationally with 90 receptions in 2010. His season was so impressive he became one of six Mizzou players to be named a consensus All-American over the last 20 years. He finished his career ninth in Mizzou history with 147 career receptions. His only real “fault” was timing as he followed Martin Rucker and Chase Coffman in the Tigers’ tight end lineage.
He was a 6-foot-5, 250 pound man who ran a 4.5 40. I gotta be honest, I’m not sure I would have guessed he ran that fast given the way he was utilized at Mizzou.
He was a true possession receiver. Pinkel’s Tigers were on the forefront of utilizing tight ends as slot weapons. He would line Rucker, Coffman or Egnew in the slot, take advantage of the mismatch and run it back over and over and over again.
That’s not to suggest Egnew didn’t have big games. Of course he did. He put up 13 catches for more than 140 yards against San Diego State (you probably remember that game for something else, though). He had 10 for 60 in the Tigers’ comeback season-opener victory against Illinois in 2010, and he finished with seven receptions for... eight yards (???) in Mizzou’s Homecoming win against Oklahoma. I... don’t remember how that happened.
I say all of that to say this: Egnew was a model of consistency. He was Mr. Reliable for Blaine Gabbert in 2010. It’s hard to live up to the expectations set by Coffman and Rucker, but Egnew came pretty darn close.