Tag Archives: James Franklin

Saturday Sports: Tribune’s David Morrison on MIzzou football

Darren Hellwege logoIn this excerpt from Thinking Out Loud: Saturday Sports from Aug. 23, 2014, Darren Hellwege talks with David Morrison, the Missouri football beat writer for the Columbia Daily Tribune. They look back over fall camp and offer a comprehensive preview of the 2014 Tigers, which still has a lot of question marks at a lot of positions.

Length: 31:25


Unproven Mizzou still confident in SEC football 

By The Associated Press

HOOVER, Ala. — Missouri made a surprising run to the top of the Southeastern Conference’s Eastern Division in just its second year in the league.

Staying on top might be even more of a challenge.

The Tigers lost a huge chunk of their team after finishing 12-2 last season, including 7-1 in the SEC. Only nine starters return, including just four on offense.

But new starting quarterback Maty Mauk was confident during Missouri’s appearance at SEC Media Days on Read more of this post

Part 2: Year in review

The ups, downs, achievements and misfires in Mizzou’s teams

darren hellwege logo

Darren Hellwege, Sports Commentator

Today I take a look at the fall sports teams. Check out yesterday’s column for a look at the spring sports.


There’s too much talent on this club to be 8-9-3, but once again the team struggled late in the year after showing real potential.

An early season match that nearly pulled off an upset at powerhouse Portland and two wins over top-10 Southeastern Conference opponents showed how good this team could be. But four losses and three ties in the final nine games killed whatever good things the Tiger season had in store.

MVPs: (ties) Kaysie Clark and Mackenzie Sauerwein. Maybe this is cheating, but hey, it’s my column. Midfielder Clark Read more of this post

10 Mizzou Tigers making their way to the NFL

It was a tense and emotional weekend for 15 former Missouri football players as they waited for their name to be called in the NFL Draft. Four players got the call they hoped for. Here are the results from the weekend.

Second Round
60. Kony Ealy, DE: Carolina
64. Justin Britt, OT: Seattle

Sixth Round
188. E.J. Gaines, CB: St. Louis

Seventh Round
249. Michael Sam, DE : St. Louis (compensatory selection)

Undrafted free agents:
James Franklin, QB: Detroit
Henry Josey, RB: Philadelphia
Marcus Lucus, WR: Carolina
L’Damian Washington, WR: Dallas
Eric Waters, TE: Pittsburgh
Andrew Wilson, OLB: Miami

Undrafted, unsigned
Donovan Bonner
Max Copeland
Marvin Foster
Randy Ponder
Matt White

Michael Sam in spotlight at Missouri’s football pro day

By The Associated Press

COLUMBIA, Mo. — Michael Sam certainly draws a crowd.

Scouts from more than 30 NFL teams, fans and media packed Missouri’s training facilities Thursday to watch the former Tigers defensive end and 14 of his former teammates at the school’s annual pro day.

A little over a month since Sam announced his desire to become the first openly gay NFL player, he lifted 225 pounds 19 times, ran the 40-yard dash in an unofficial time of 4.69 seconds and jumped 30 inches — all improvements from his statistics at the NFL combine last month. He also raised eyebrows after tweaking his right hamstring during the run.

“Just a little sore,” his agent Joe Barkett said.

With television cameras following his every move, the 6-2, 263-pound Sam stretched while teammates performed the 3-cone and short shuttle drills, and returned for the vertical jump and linebacker workouts.

One of his fans in attendance was Jets defensive tackle Sheldon Richardson, who left Missouri last year. Richardson wished him the best in the NFL but said the draft hopeful could wind up hearing some homophobic jokes in the pros.

“It is what it is,” Richardson said. “You hear every kind of joke – racist jokes, everything in the NFL locker room. That’s what happens when you’re a family. Nothing bothers you. Only those people can talk about you. No one else outside the locker room.”

Sam is pegged to be picked in the lower rounds of the NFL draft, if at all, much lower than fellow defensive end Kony Ealy.

On his second and final attempt, Ealy ran the 40-yard dash in an unofficial 4.57 seconds, only four-hundredths of a second slower than Jadeveon Clowney’s time at the combine. The school announced the time, which would be a considerable improvement over the 4.92 seconds Ealy posted at the combine.

Ealy also posted a 32-inch vertical jump and a 10-foot broad jump.

Ealy hopes to become the seventh first-round NFL draft pick from Missouri in the past six years following Richardson last April. The 6-feet-4-inch, 265-pound end described Richardson as a mentor.

“Having a guy like that, an older guy going through all the ropes, somebody I can relate to, it means a lot,” he said. “I can easily relate to him.”

While much of the attention surrounded the two defensive ends, the workouts gave other players a chance to show off their skills in front of scouts from every team except the Redskins, according to the NFL Network.

“I think it’s very important,” quarterback James Franklin said. “It’s really helpful. In high school, it’s kind of how I started to get recruited. Scouts would go there for other teams or college coaches would go there for other players, and then they would see me there. And that’s kind of how I got attention.”

Franklin ran an unofficial 4.9-second 40-yard dash on his second attempt, while receiver L’Damian Washington paced the field with an unofficial 4.39-second mark.

Asked about the challenge in preparing for May’s draft, Washington mentioned the difficulty in turning the page so quickly from a 12-win season. He’s recovering from what he described as an inflamed nerve in his feet, and says he is “90 percent.”

Washington hopes the injury won’t prevent him from fulfilling his dreams of becoming an NFL player.

“It’s a four- or five-month job interview,” he said. “And no matter what, you have to watch everything you do, watch everything you say, because it’s going to be out there.”

Sam, defense give Mizzou 41-31 win over Oklahoma State in Cotton Bowl

Pinkel now winningest coach in Missouri history

Photos by Tim Nwachukwu
Story by Stephen Hawkins, The Associated Press

Anthony Gatti (70), Justin Britt (68) and Max Copeland (61) celebrate on the field with the Cotton Bowl trophy after the game.

Anthony Gatti (70), Justin Britt (68) and Max Copeland (61) celebrate on the field with the Cotton Bowl trophy after the game.

ARLINGTON, Texas — Missouri got the big plays it needed at the end of the Cotton Bowl to beat an old rival.

Henry Josey ran for 92 yards and three touchdowns, the last a 16-yarder with 3:08 left, and Shane Ray returned a fumble 73 yards for a touchdown after that as the No. 9 Tigers beat No. 13 Oklahoma State 41-31 late Friday night.

The former Big 12 and Big Eight rivals traded scores on six consecutive possessions in the fourth quarter, until Read more of this post

COTTON BOWL: First half photos

Photos by Tim Nwachukwu

Missouri got off to a slow start in the first quarter of the Cotton Bowl but was able to go into halftime with the lead over Oklahoma State.


New conference but familiar game for Missouri against Okla. State

By The Associated Press

ARLINGTON, Texas — Missouri coach Gary Pinkel is constantly asked to compare the SEC to the Big 12.

The ninth-ranked Tigers left the Big 12 two years ago, got off to a rocky start but won the Southeastern Conference East Division this season in somewhat of a surprise.

The question came up again with Missouri (11-2) representing the SEC in the Cotton Bowl on Friday night against Read more of this post

Mizzou’s 30 bowl game history

After failing to make it to a bowl game last season, football coach Gary Pinkel led the Missouri Tigers to a Southeastern Conference East Division championship and a spot in today’s Cotton Bowl. Since coming to Missouri in 2001, Pinkel has taken the Tigers to nine bowl games. Here’s a look at Missouri’s bowl game record.

Overall bowl record: 13-16

Jan. 3, 2014 Cotton Bowl: Missouri v. Oklahoma State

Dec. 26, 2011 Independence Bowl: Missouri 41, North Carolina 24

Dec. 28, 2010 Insight Bowl: Iowa 27, Missouri 24

Dec. 31, 2009 Texas Bowl: Navy 35, Missouri 13

Dec. 29, 2008 Alamo Bowl: Missouri 30, Northwestern 23, OT

Jan. 1, 2008 Capital One Bowl: Missouri 38, Arkansas 7

Dec. 29, 2006 Sun Bowl: Oregon St. 39, Missouri 38

Dec. 30, 2005 Independence Bowl: Missouri 38, South Carolina 31

Dec. 31, 2003 Independence Bowl: Arkansas 27, Missouri 14

Dec. 26 1998 Insight.com Bowl: Missouri 34, West Virginia 31

Dec. 29 1997 Holiday Bowl: Colorado St. 35, Missouri 24

Dec. 23 1983 Holiday Bowl: Brigham Young 21, Missouri 17

Dec. 19 1981 Tangerine Bowl: Missouri 19, Southern Miss 17

Dec. 27 1980 Liberty Bowl: Purdue 28, Missouri 25

Dec. 29 1979 Hall of Fame Bowl: Missouri 24, South Carolina 14

Dec. 23 1978 Liberty Bowl: Missouri 20, LSU 15

Dec. 29 1973 Sun Bowl: Missouri 34, Auburn 17

Dec. 23 1972 Fiesta Bowl: Arizona St. 49, Missouri 35

Jan. 1 1970 Orange Bowl: Penn St. 10, Missouri 3

Dec. 28 1968 Gator Bowl: Missouri 35, Alabama 10

Jan. 1 1966 Sugar Bowl: Missouri 20, Florida 18

Dec. 22 1962 Bluebonnet Bowl: Missouri 14, Georgia Tech 10

Jan. 2 1961 Orange Bowl: Missouri 21, Navy 14

Jan. 1 1960 Orange Bowl: Georgia 14, Missouri 0

Jan. 2 1950 Gator Bowl: Maryland 20, Missouri 7

Jan. 1 1949 Gator Bowl: Clemson 24, Missouri 23

Jan. 1 1946 Cotton Bowl: Texas 40, Missouri 27

Jan. 1 1942 Sugar Bowl: Fordham 2, Missouri 0

Jan. 1 1940 Orange Bowl: Georgia Tech 21, Missouri 7

Dec. 25 1924 L.A. Christmas Festival: Southern Cal 20, Missouri 7

QB Franklin looking forward to chance for redemption against Oklahoma State

Bowl game reunites Mizzou and a Big 12 team

By The Associated Press

IRVING, Texas —Missouri quarterback James Franklin remembers exactly what happened the only time he faced Oklahoma State when the two teams were still Big 12 rivals two years ago.

“We lost and I had three picks, two of them were tipped, one perfectly into a defensive lineman’s hands,” Franklin said. “But I did make the tackle.”

Franklin gets another chance against the Cowboys in his final college game. The No. 9 Tigers (11-2), the Southeastern Conference East champion in their second season in the league, play No. 13 Oklahoma State (10-2) in the Cotton Bowl on Friday night at 7 p.m.

A year after Texas A&M completed its first SEC season with a win over Oklahoma at the Dallas Cowboys’ massive stadium, there is another Big 12 reunion in the Cotton Bowl. Missouri plays the border-state rival that also used to be in the Big Eight Conference, and the first Big 12 team it has faced since switching leagues.

“It definitely brings a little bit more to the rivalry, them leaving the Big 12 and playing them again,” Oklahoma State linebacker Caleb Lavey said. “You definitely feel the rivalry there.”

Oklahoma State won the last three meetings in the series, including that 45-24 victory on the road in October 2011. Franklin was 14 of 27 passing for 184 yards, a touchdown and the three interceptions, along with a 31-yard catch, while current Mizzou running back Henry Josey ran for 138 yards on 25 carries.

The Tigers left the Big 12 for the SEC a few months later, and had their first losing season (5-7) in eight years in their first year in the new league. They won only two conference games in 2012.

Picked this preseason to finish sixth in the seven-team SEC East, their only losses were in double overtime to No. 8 South Carolina and in the SEC championship game against No. 2 Auburn. They can become only the second 12-win team at Missouri with a victory in the Cotton Bowl.

“We’re having a great year, but I think to win this bowl game would basically put the stamp on what this team has done for Mizzou,” receiver L’Damian Washington said. “It just proved Mizzou can compete in the SEC. Last year people said Mizzou had no business going to the SEC, and this year to win the SEC East in our second year, that says something.”

SEC teams have won nine of the last 10 Cotton Bowls, all over Big 12 teams. The lone exception was in 2008, when Missouri, then in the Big 12, beat Arkansas 38-7 to cap its only 12-win season.

“It’s pretty cool being able to play against them,” Franklin said. “We have a little chip on our shoulder, and I’m sure they do too since we were in the Big 12, and now we’ve left. I think it’s going to be really exciting.”

Oklahoma State cornerback Justin Gilbert said the Tigers seem to be playing a lot harder as a team in the SEC, while still balanced on offense and defense.

Cowboys linebacker Shawn Lewis, who had one of the interceptions in 2011, admits that it “does add a little flair to the situation” with Missouri having come from the Big 12 and now having success in the SEC.

“We have a bunch of these guys, all my seniors were playing, and their guys were playing, Franklin and Josey and the senior offensive line, they were all sophomores. They were pretty good on offense, and we were pretty good on defense,” Oklahoma State defensive coordinator Glenn Spencer said. “I think it’s a good dynamic of this game, from that side of the ball, and my side of the ball. We’ve all gotten better. Let’s see what happens.