Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

Mizzou Black & Gold Scrimmage: Five Things to Watch

Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

Mizzou Black & Gold Scrimmage: Five Things to Watch

Article excerpt

Missouri holds its Black and Gold spring scrimmage at 4 p.m. Saturday at Memorial Stadium. The scrimmage will be streamed live on SEC Network Plus, which can be accessed through the WatchESPN app or website (also, SEC Network Plus channels are listed on page B2).

1. Catch it if you can

Who will become quarterback Maty Mauk's trusty receivers this fall? That's still undecided heading into the final spring scrimmage. Among Mizzou's healthy wide receivers, other than senior Wesley Leftwich and junior walk-on Eric Laurent, the rest of the regulars are freshmen and sophomores. Nate Brown, whose five catches last year are the most among returning wideouts, has missed most of the spring with a knee injury and probably won't play Saturday. Sophomore J'Mon Moore has been the most productive wideout in the other scrimmages, with a team-best 10 catches for 125 yards. The shortage of experience at receiver could be offset by MU's collection of tight ends, but returning starter Sean Culkin has missed most of the spring with a shoulder injury.

2. Boost from the bench?

Gary Pinkel doesn't like to platoon quarterbacks, but with the offense starved for impact playmakers, what about giving redshirt freshman Marvin Zanders a couple of series for a change of pace? Incumbent No. 2 QB Eddie Printz hasn't exactly pulled away from the other candidates for the backup job, and Zanders offers running ability that no other quarterback on the roster possesses. Can Zanders push Printz for the backup job this fall? Zanders has only completed 42.5 percent of his passes in the spring scrimmages, but Mauk (48.1) hasn't been much better. Zanders could use Saturday's platform to earn an expanded role.

3. New boss, new look on defense?

Don't expect to see too many new defensive wrinkles under first- year coordinator Barry Odom, who replaced longtime Pinkel assistant Dave Steckel. …

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