After a report yesterday said junior running back Chase Abbington had left the team, Barry Odom told us after practice that Abbington had "quit football." As previously mentioned, this leaves the Tigers with only three practicing running backs for the spring - Ish Witter, Trevon Walters and Ryan Williams. Marquise Doherty has been practicing with Mizzou baseball.
Odom also said that senior lineman Malik Cuellar had decided to quit football today. Cuellar was a JUCO transfer and would have been a senior this fall. Glen Elarbee had mentioned him briefly last week as having moved inside to help out. In our Spring Previews I had Cuellar as has having fallen behind junior JUCO transfer Tyler Howell at left tackle so it may have been about him getting passed on the depth chart but Odom wouldn't go into any further details.
Junior lineman Clay Rhodes was not at practice last Thursday and was absent again today. Odom said he'd spoken to Clay on Sunday night and that he was still working on some personal issues but wouldn't comment further.
As to Missouri's depth issues at on the offensive line, Odom mentioned they were "always recruiting," and it sounded like there might be some consideration toward bringing in some immediate help before the fall.
Missouri only has 9 scholarship lineman practicing right now not counting Clay Rhodes. Former defensive tackle Tyrell Jacobs has been practicing with the offensive line group but only since last week and Elarbee has made it sound like the move is more of a long term project as he's still learning the fundamentals.
Walter Brady and Harold Brantley were both absent from practice today. Odom explained that there had been a birth in Brady's family that he needed to attend, while Brantley was working on some academic projects.
The latest injury updates, per Mizzou:
Terry Beckner Jr. remains out due to right ACL. Tavon Ross remains out due to left ACL.
"Day to Day":
Junior Nate Crawford was held out of practice again today due to a lower back strain. Crawford had back surgery last summer, and it sounded like he was being held out to give his back a rest. Barry Odom said last week, "I’m not concerned about it. Nate’s had a lot of reps. We’ll get him back when he’s ready."
A new injury today was that of junior defensive tackle A.J. Logan, who came out with a left knee sprain. Receiver Ray Wingo remained out due to a left hamstring strain.
Chris Black was wearing a red pullover during practice after a "mild" right ankle sprain. This was the same ankle that he had surgery on, which caused him to miss time at Alabama.
Receiver and return specialist Johnathan Johnson was back at practice returning kicks while wearing a red pullover.
Spring practice injury updates pic.twitter.com/54pUN2yvF6— Oscar Gambler (@oscargambler) March 22, 2016
Check out the latest about Josh Heupel coaching up the QBs:
Thursday's practice is closed to the media. The next open practice will be after Spring Break on April 5.