Missouri head coach Gary Pinkel was the first head coach to speak on the third day of SEC Media Days in Hoover, AL.

One of his major subjects was departed WR Dorial Green-Beckham, who was dismissed from Columbia earlier this year and has instead moved onto Oklahoma.

Pinkel revealed to local media that he spoke to OU coach Bob Stoops before D G-B went to Norman, and added: “He’s in a good place. I want things to work well for Dorial.” He added in his press conference when asked about his receiver: “You make mistakes, you have a chance to learn a lesson, and I think he will….We lost a great player.”

As for the loss as a meaning for his team, Pinkel insisted that despite the loss of the player, there were other options on offense where the team could go.

Team-mate Even Boehm said about the incident: “It sucks the way it happened, how everything went down. But he’s where he wants to be right now.

We already know that his QB is going to be Maty Mauk, who threw for 11 TDs and just 2 INTs for 1,071 yards last year. That’s for certain. Mauk came with him to Hoover. Mauk is some people’s Heisman candidate for the 2014 season. Pinkle said: “The bad news was that we lost our starting QB for 4 games; good news is a Redshirt freshman came in and played at the high level.” He added that Mauk’s leadership style was “very non-threatening“, adding that teammates “like the way he leads… He’s a very natural leader. … He’s a winner and players know it. He leads in a very positive way.”

In short, Pinkel said, Mauk has the ‘it’ factor. Speaking of ‘it’ factor, Mauk called one Johnny Manziel the “greatest player to ever play college football.

He said about the loss of receivers such as L’Damian Washington as well as Green-Beckham: “We lost quite a few receivers. Good ones.” Mizzou’s beat writer Dave Matter also commented that Pinkel has said over and over again that he doesn’t have to use receivers for the job of catching….he could use running backs as receivers, too.

Some coaches in the SEC are not a fan of no huddle offenses, because, they say, it is dangerous. “I don’t buy the health issue in any way…I think that is fiction“, Pinkel – who loves a fast-paced offense himself – replied. Although about his colleagues in the SEC’s offenses, he noted that Auburn’s was “very, very confusing.”

He added about the team’s strength at defensive end: “Some of the guys said the backup guys are better than the first-team guys. It’s all about depth.” They’d better have depth. Missouri returns only 8 starters (4 on offense, 4 on defense)…the fewest returning starters in the SEC. In short, a lot of people are expected a far worse year for the Tigers….even if Pinkel doesn’t ‘care’ what the writers think.

Pinkel also voiced his frustration at players leaving Missouri early for the NFL. “The frustration, for all of us, is players for the wrong reasons coming out early. And many of them don’t even get drafted.

Missouri’s second game of the season will be at Toledo, who were expected to give Florida everything it could handle in 2013 but didn’t. Pinkel answered: “They have a rich tradition of beating good football teams. … As I usually am I’m scared to death.


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