RB Derrick Washington
9-5-09 vs. Illinois
9-19-09 FURMAN
9-25-09 at Nevada (Fri.)
10-8-09 NEBRASKA (Thur.)
10-17-09 at Oklahoma State
10-24-09 TEXAS
10-31-09 at Colorado
11-7-09 BAYLOR
11-14-09 at Kansas State
11-21-09 IOWA STATE
11-28-09 at Kansas
Coach: Gary Pinkel
59-41, 8 years

2008 Statistics

2008 RESULTS: 10-4
vs. Illinois WON 52-42
at Nebraska WON 52-17
at Texas LOST 31-56
at Baylor WON 31-28
at Iowa State WON 52-20
vs. Kansas LOST 37-40
vs. Oklahoma LOST 21-62
Northwestern WON 30-23 (OTv)

2008 Final Rankings
AP-19, Coaches-16, BCS-21


2009 Outlook

Most people are going to wonder how a team that had top 10 expectations just a year ago can fail to find any recognition in most of the current preseason polls. The obvious answer is the player turnover. With only nine starters returning overall, questions abound, none looming larger than who will replace Daniel at QB. The top three receivers are history. Coaches are not even sure who will fill the gaps on the defensive line, play cornerback, or place kick. The nation's third worst pass defense has to start from scratch with three new starters. That does not mean Missouri is going to fall to the bottom of the extremely competitive Big 12 North; they actually have the potential, moreover, to catch foes napping.

A major youth movement is taking place at many of the emptied positions. But make no mistake - Coach Pinkel has hauled in some real gems in his recent recruiting efforts. One name carrying such lofty expectations will be QB Blaine Gabbert, an in-state product who chose to stay close to home. This signal caller owns a long list of high school accolades including being named as the nations top pro-style QB by many recruiting services. On paper, he has every physical tool imaginable: a strong arm, size, deadly accuracy, scrambling ability and leadership qualities. The sophomore has a grand future staring him in the face. Despite his promising outlook, the scramble to replace Chase Daniel also includes last year's Missouri Player of The Year Blaine Dalton, who enrolled early this spring in an attempt to get a leg up in the QB race. Needless to say this position continues to be in good hands. The extremely young incumbents may still be a year of seasoning away from being fully capable Big 12 passers.

Spread offenses, like Mizzou’s, have become famous in this conference; receivers and QBs rack up big numbers. With the WR and QB replacements here likely to go through the learning curve, the top weapon becomes returning 1,000-yard rusher Derrick Washington. His backup, De'Vion Moore, is just as qualified. While Mizzou will continue to run the same spread formations, expect the action between the tackles to be the difference. Some quality names are back in the OL fold, three of them having earned one form or another of All-Conference honors last year.

Injuries have hampered progress this spring especially at receiver. Top threats, Perry and Alexander, have seen limited reps recovering from off-season surgeries. They are all expected back at full health come fall, but it did not help the QB development watching younger WRs with little experience learn on the job.

Defensively, the front line and the secondary are actually the biggest concerns. If coaches can’t fix what was one of the nation's worst secondaries, the won/loss results are going to suffer hard. The best player on either side of the football is LB Sean Weatherspoon. Seriously, 'Spoon' is good enough to cover the entire field and compensate for sure-to-be-seen youthful mistakes. The NationalChamps.net First Team All-American is a front-runner to win the Butkus Award. When watching a Mizzou game this year as the defense takes the field, don't follow the ball. Take our advice and watch Weatherspoon. He is an amazing specimen.

For eight years the coaching names have rarely changed. But three new faces will enter the coaching fold in ‘09. Not only is the offense breaking in new bodies at key skill positions, the offensive coordinator / quarterbacks coach is newly hired David Yost. When Dave Christensen accepted the head coaching position at Wyoming, Yost was hired to replace him from within after he spent the past 13 seasons serving a variety of capacities on this staff. His development as a play caller will be just as crucial as the progress of whoever will be taking the snaps.

Outside of their newest scheduling tradition, the St. Louis opener against Illinois, the September slate does not appear to overwhelming. For a team that’s rebuilding, this is good news considering how Big 12 powers Nebraska, Oklahoma State and Texas immediately follow the soft opening. The bottom line is that nobody knows how to measure this team just yet with all the new faces. As stated already, a ton of those unproven names on the depth chart have (more than) enough potential. The Tigers are going to benefit immensely from not having the weight of lofty expectations stacked on their shoulders. At the same time, getting another 10-win season does not look to be in the cards right now.

The choice of who replaces Chase Daniel is in very good hands. Blaine Gabbert is going to be another Chase Daniel, just not this year. The long-term future here looks much brighter than any guarantees for 2009.

Projected 2009 record: 6-6
NT Jaron Baston
QB - 4 DL - 3
RB - 4.5 LB - 4
WR - 3 DB - 2
OL - 3.5 ..
2008 Statistical Rankings
Total Off:
Sacks Allow:
Total Def:

Passing: Blaine Gabbert, 5-13-0, 43 yds., 0 TD

Rushing: Derrick Washington, 177 att., 1036 yds., 17 TD

Receiving: Jared Perry, 41 rec., 567 yds., 4 TD

Scoring: Derrick Washington, 19 TD, 114 pts.

Punting: Jake Harry, 26 punts, 40.7 avg.

Kicking: None

Tackles: Sean Weatherspoon, 155 tot., 76 solo

Sacks: Sean Weatherspoon, 5 sacks

Interceptions: Sean Weatherspoon, 3 for 100 yds., 2 TD

Kickoff Returns: Jon Gissinger, 3 ret., 8.7 avg., 0 TD

Punt Returns: Will Ebner, 2 ret., 3.0 avg., 0 TD


LB Josh Tatum – Spent a redshirt year at Southern California beside touted LBs Keith Rivers, Brian Cushing and Rey Maualuga before transferring to San Francisco City College. Emerged as one of the best JUCO level players prior to becoming a Tiger.
CB Munir Prince – Unhappy at Notre Dame, where played tailback and cornerback, he sat out last year under NCAA transfer rules. With CB being a huge need he is sure to get plenty of opportunities to display his 4.3 forty speed, the team's fasted clocked time.
DT George White – The Flint, MI native was one of the best prep linebackers to come out of the state in 2007. Although currently undersized for a tackle at 250 pounds, his explosion and speed as he picks up the new position is a huge plus as the race to fill the shoes of Ziggy Hood is wide open.
2009 College Football Preview
OFFENSE: Chase Daniel-QB, Jimmy Jackson-TB, Tommy Saunders-WR, Chase Coffman-TE, Ryan Madison-OG, Colin Brown-OT, Jeff Wolfert-K/P, Jeremy Maclin-WR (NFL)
DEFENSE: Tommy Chavis-DE, Ziggy Hood-DT, Stryker Sulak-DE, Brock Christopher-MLB, Castine Bridges-CB, Justin Garrett-SS, William Moore-FS

The million-dollar question is who replaces the winningest starting quarterback in Mizzou history? Chase Daniel has finally moved on. The answer is going to come from an open competition that includes four different candidates. The safest bet – it will likely be a Blaine…of course, since both of the frontrunners share that same first name. Through the spring, Blaine Gabbert is taking a narrow lead, and some feel it is a big enough lead to avoid controversy this summer. Gabbert was one of the most highly sought-after quarterback prospects in the nation. He chose to go with his in-state school, bringing all of his prep accolades accordingly, to be hailed arguably as the nation's top pro-style QB prospect. Gabbert has the height (6'5) to match his arm, which has impressed as many as he has with his legs. Just your typical Missouri quarterback, so to speak, so get used to hearing his name. Gabbert keeps plays alive, doesn't take many sacks, possesses deadly accuracy and has already started to show his leadership in the locker room. The backup looks to be a true freshman that was the 2008 Missouri Player of The Year. Blaine Dalton chose to graduate early from high school and enroll this spring, as did Ashton Glaser from Arkansas, who earned a reputation as one of the top dual-threat prep QBs in the nation. Does one redshirt, and which? Also in the mix is former walk-on Jimmy Costello. He passed on Division II offers to fulfill a dream of playing here. While he has the most experience, he is clearly the underdog in this race. When the competition is all said and done, Gabbert will be the guy.

Derrick Washington showed what he was capable of during his true freshman season of 2007. Last year, he kicked in the door with an outstanding performance that earned him Second Team All-Big 12 honors (17 TDs). He is also a dangerous receiving threat. While penciled in as the sure starter, De’Vion Moore is not far off in terms of ability and is still pushing for his share of duty. Moore is becoming skilled at hiding behind his blockers and then darting out when he sees a hole. He's not the biggest guy but a nice change of pace from Washington, giving coaches a devastating one-two punch out of the backfield. With Jimmy Jackson graduating and Drew Temple opting to leave the team, the depth is thin behind these two, forcing former safety Gilbert Moye into action here. Moye was one of the most athletic QBs in the Class of 2007 but made the switch to defense as Chase Daniel locked down the spot behind center. While the Big 12 has recently become known for it's wide open offenses and big time quarterbacks, now may be the time for this group to become one of the best between the tackles. They certainly have the horses to run on any track.

Two of the three starters at receiver are gone. The top receiving threats now become Jared Perry and Danario Alexander. Unfortunately, both Perry (knee) and Alexander (shoulder) were limited this spring due to off-season surgeries. They both are expected to be at full strength when the season begins. Perry made an immediate splash as a true freshman in 2006 where he earned a spot on the Big 12 All-Freshman team. Since, he has been a steady contributor but has not hit his stride, instead watching guys like Maclin dominate. This is the senior’s time to emerge, as is classmate’s Alexander, which is good news since everyone else trying to break into the rotation is a freshman of sophomore. The youth movement starts with Jerrell Jackson, a skilled two-way player out of the Houston area. Others making a push will be Wes Kemp, who saw spot duty as a true frosh last season, and Rolandis Woodland. The difference between this corps being good and great rests with the young ones. This area’s development may one of the most important offensively. The All-American tradition at tight end is in good hands with Andre Jones (No. 2 player overall in the state according to Scout.com.) He was impressive as a freshman filling in for Coffman and caught 20 passes. Mizzou’s snarling future continues to look good.

Ranking in the top 10 in four major offensive categories (2008) proved that this offense has to have a solid set of blockers to succeed. Three of those members, who received (some form or another of) All-Big 12 recognition last season, are returning to the lineup. Senior guard Kurtis Gregory is going to garner the most national honors. How can you not like this kid? Aside from starting 28 consecutive games, Gregory is an outstanding student that has already earned his degree and is now working on his master's (Vice President and Treasurer on the Student-Athlete Advisory Council, he has given much of his personal time to help promote The Children's Hospital and Central Missouri Food Bank charities among others). He is an impressive physical specimen with a degree of quickness that will likely take him to the next level. Center Tim Barnes is growing into a dominating center. Spring drills made him an absolute monster. RS frosh T Elvin Fisher began the ’08 season as a backup and became a pleasant surprise, starting 14 games and later getting named a First Team Freshman All-American. Sophomore Dan Hoch played as a true freshman in 2008 – a rare feat for a first-year player out of high school at this level. The pass protection was solid last year (16th nationally in sacks allowed) and the run game produced an All-Conference back. There is reason to believe this year's line can continue the recent offensive success(es).


OG Kurtis Gregory


Returning Starters/
Key Players
QB Blaine Gabbert-So (6-5, 235) Blaine Dalton-Fr (6-1, 190)
Jimmy Costello-So (6-3, 225)
TB Derrick Washington-Jr (5-11, 225) De'Vion Moore-So (5-9, 200)
WR Jared Perry-Sr (6-1, 180) Brandon Gerau-So (6-0, 175)
WR Jerrell Jackson-So (6-1, 190) Rolandis Woodland-RFr (6-3, 195)
WR Danario Alexander-Sr (6-5, 210) Wes Kemp-So (6-4, 225)
TE Andrew Jones-So (6-5, 245) Michael Egnew-So (6-6, 215)
OT Elvis Fisher-So (6-5, 300) Mike Prince-Jr (6-3, 300)
OG Austin Wuebbels-So (6-4, 300) Jayson Palmgren-So (6-2, 305)
C Tim Barnes-Jr (6-4, 305) J.T. Beasley-So (6-4, 295)
OG Kurtis Gregory-Sr (6-5, 305) Travis Ruth-RFr (6-3, 305)
OT Dan Hoch-So (6-7, 315) Daniel Jenkins-RFr (6-4, 305)
K Tanner Mills-Sr (6-2, 200) Grant Ressel-So (6-1, 190)
Trey Barrow-So (6-1, 185)



With only one starter returning, there is much work to be done. That lone starter is nose tackle Jaron Baston, clearly the leader of this group. He is a solid run-stuffer with a 300-pound athletic presence. Replacing NFL-bound Ziggy Hood inside is still one big question mark. The two players attempting to fill his spot are Terrell Resonno and Dominique Hamilton, both sophomores that saw reserve action in every game last season. Redshirt freshman George White, a former 250-pound linebacker who has been making waves with his speed and explosiveness, will emerge as an important cog. When talking about the youth movement currently engulfing this year's team, end is one position that needs totally restocking. Missouri’s DEs have a total of one start amongst them. Brian Coulter is the veteran but has played just one season of college football. Initially signed with Florida State out of junior college, Coulter ended up a Tiger after a numbers game left him out of the picture at FSU. The tandem of Aldon and Jacquies Smith (no relation) has been getting tons of praise in practice for hoe well they pass rush. Serious raw talent abounds here, but their best Saturdays will likely a year or two away. Expect one of the younger ends to take off and build a solid foundation of promise. But make no mistake - this front line is extremely young.

The Butkus Award voters this season will hopefully 'Spoon' it out…a play on the nickname given to weakside linebacker Sean Weatherspoon. Wow, this guy can cover the entire field. If his 155 tackles of a year ago don’t raise a few eyebrows, maybe the fact that he is the team's returning sack (five) and interception (three) leader will. Want more? To quote the head coach...“Sean Weatherspoon (right now) is running faster than he’s ever run, he’s stronger than he’s ever been," Pinkel said. Scary thoughts. Luke Lambert will slide over to his more natural spot in the middle with full-timer Brock Christopher departing. Lambert is underrated as he quietly but assuredly makes the needed play. His versatility is evident as he is currently the team's two-time Special Teams Player of The Year. Backups Will Ebner, one of the hardest hitting players on the team, and JUCO transfer Josh Tatum are going to see some time. Keep an eye on the highly coveted Tatum, already enrolled and expected to make an impact. On the strong side, Andrew Gachkar sits atop the list after coming all the way back from a 2008 surgery (rib removed). His relentless push to come back also exemplifies his efforts as a tackler. This unit appears to be the deepest/most experienced from a defensive standpoint, although that would not take much. With Weatherspoon being the leader while getting double and triple looks from blockers, expect the others to be that much better.

Why did Missouri fail to meet last year's lofty expectations? Well, simply put, only three schools at the FBS level were statistically worse at defending the pass, and that is not a good formula in the Big 12. This is a place where big time quarterbacks have a way of making even the better coverage units look silly, so something has to give in this secondary if the team wants to get to the top level(s) seen in 2007. With All-Big 12 safety William Moore and two other starters leaving town, it's time to go back to the drawing board. And that is exactly what coaches will do. No position on the team will be more wide open than at cornerback. The only returning starter, Carl Gettis is not even sure he will be lining up at his same spot. Gettis becomes a prime candidate to take over where Moore left off at the safety/linebacker nickel role. At least there is no shortage of bodies. Hobson and Rutland both have seen their share of playing time. The trio of Prince, Steeples and Edwards has yet to play defensive back at the college level. Munir Prince has consistently shown solid cover skills this spring, but it may not be enough to earn a starting role…yet. Kevin Rutland is one of the fastest players on the team and has long been considered one of the better athletes, which makes him a good candidate to lock down one of those corners. At safety Kenji Jackson is proving to be a punishing hitter, while Hardy Ricks uses his smarts (grasp of the system) to earn a starting role. Who ends up being a part of the first team group for the opener is anyone's guess. Just naming a leader sometimes gets perplexing. The biggest concern for the upcoming campaign easily resides with this backfield and with good reason. If this unit cannot slow down the loaded offenses in this league, Mizzou’s offense likely won’t have the expertise to consistently out score the better ones.


LB Sean Weatherspoon


Returning Starters/
Key Players
DE Jacquies Smith-So (6-4, 240) Marcus Malbrough-Fr (6-5, 245)
DT Terrell Resonno-So (6-6, 295) George White-RFr (6-3, 250)
NT Jaron Baston-Sr (6-1, 305) Dominique Hamilton-So (6-6, 290)
DE Brian Coulter-Sr (6-4, 255) Aldon Smith-RFr (6-5, 245)
SLB Andrew Gachkar-Jr (6-3, 230) Jeff Gettys-Jr (6-3, 235)
MLB Luke Lambert-Jr (6-3, 235) Will Ebner-So (6-1, 230)
WLB Sean Weatherspoon-Sr (6-2, 245) Cornell Ellis-RFr (6-0, 230)
CB Kevin Rutland-Jr (6-0, 195) Trey Hobson-So (5-11, 190)
CB Carl Gettis-Jr (5-11, 200) Munir Prince-Jr (5-10, 185)
Robert Steeples-RFr (6-1, 195)
SS Hardy Ricks-Sr (6-0, 200) Zaviar Gooden-RFr (6-2, 210)
Jarrell Harrison-Jr (6-2, 210)
FS Kenji Jackson-So (5-10, 195) Del Howard-Sr (5-11, 200)
P Jake Harry-Sr (6-1, 195) Grant Ressel-So (6-1, 190)




A year ago there was no replacement in sight for kicker Jeff Wolfert, who graduated holding the NCAA career accuracy record. The battle to replace him will likely continue all the way into the September. Tanner Mills looks to be the early frontrunner. The local native and soccer standout transferred here a year ago from nearby Columbia College. Grant Ressel appears to be the guy that can kick it the farthest, but he has shown a good bit of inconsistency. In this prolific scoring offense the punter usually does not see too many attempts. Jake Harry looks to continue to handle this role. He boots 40-to-50-yard punts on a fairly consistent basis and has operated the rugby-style rollout scheme to the liking of Coach Pinkel. When discussing the return game, the loss of Jeremy Maclin handling both punts and kicks is going to be sorely missed. Maclin was one of the nation's best at both. Not too much info is available from the Missouri front office in terms of who the replacement will be. In fact the spring prospectus did not even touch on the situation. That says quite a bit. Ultimately, this means the competition is far from being decided. Upwards of seven different guys are getting a try out here through August and maybe even into September’s games.