Throughout the remainder of the offseason, I’ll be putting a spotlight on one returning player and one newcomer at each position who’s generally intriguing for the 2022 season. There are plenty of avenues of thought when it comes to who you may think is most interesting, so feel free to voice your opinion down below in the comments!
Returning: QB Tyler Macon
The crown jewel of Drinkwitz’s first signing class, Macon sat most of the year behind Brady Cook and Connor Bazelak. It was obvious that as a true freshman, he just wasn’t quite ready to take the reigns of the offense just yet. He didn’t nail down the playbook as well as Drinkwitz wanted, and what began as a three horse race in the eyes of fans in the middle part of the year became a two horse race between Bazelak and Cook.
At the end of the day though, he’s was still learning. Contrary to what some may think, most freshman quarterbacks, even the highly rated ones, just aren’t ready to play in the SEC as a true freshman. Even then though, in year one... He still showed flashes of game breaking athleticism that hasn’t been seen from a Missouri QB since when? Maybe Brad Smith?
In year two though, with Bazelak gone, Cook the presumptive frontrunner and another highly touted freshman on the way to CoMo, this is a great opportunity for Macon to catch people by surprise in this upcoming QB competition. A winter camp where he puts on some more muscle, tweaks his mechanics, and gets more time in the film room to grasp a better hold over the offense is exactly what Macon needs to take the next step.
I’m excited for his outlook, and the element he can provide to the offense. He’s got a high ceiling, and I’m hoping that this offseason is the springboard he needs to get to that next level.
Newcomers: QB Sam Horn
I mean, was there any other choice?
He’s the only newcomer in the QB room to this point, but he’s got the highest pedigree of any of the other guys in the room. Horn, the high four star commit, has a lot of different tools in his bag. He’s kind of a gunslinger, but you can see why because he makes almost every throw. He’s got a beautiful deep ball, and seems to hit the short and intermediate throws at a pretty efficient rate. At 6’4, he has a big frame and room to add to it as well. On top of all of this, the kid can scoot around too. He’s not a run-first guy, but moves around well enough to extend plays and will scramble when needed too.
Here’s where I caution folks, though:
He, like the highly touted QB mentioned earlier, is still a true freshman and one who is enrolling in the summer. He’s going to be adjusting from having these wide open windows, playing high school football, and always having the best player on the field (Jackson State commit, Travis Hunter) to being lower on the totem pole in the SEC at Missouri. Things are going to change for him, and that may mean that he doesn’t make a very big impact in 2022.
I’ll caution you in advance: That’s perfectly fine, and normal.
Anything from Sam Horn in his true freshman season should be considered a bonus, and if he somehow overcomes Macon AND Cook to become the starter, it’ll be because he earned it and is really a special player.