Practicing in the afternoon for the first time Monday, Missouri’s training camp got heated — literally, not figuratively, in this case.
Unseasonably cool temperatures have made for a relatively mild camp through the first two weeks for the Tigers, but Pinkel welcomed the heat as temperatures reached the mid-80s with humidity approaching 60 percent.
With Missouri’s first three games kicking off in the heat of the day, Pinkel was thrilled with the conditions.
“It’s great we’re getting this heat,” Pinkel said. “Normally, we’ve had 14 days of this stuff already, so it’s good that we’re getting it.”
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Missouri hosts South Dakota State at 2:30 p.m. Aug. 30, plays at Toledo at 11 a.m. Sept. 6 and hosts Central Florida at 11 a.m. Sept. 13 in its SEC Network debut.
On Monday, Pinkel said the hot, muggy setting had a negative impact, but he wasn’t displeased because of it.
“I’m glad we’re getting the heat,” he said. “We’ve just got to get a little more mentally tough and work through it. … It wasn’t a bad practice, but I don’t like just having a decent-to-good practice. I want a great practice. Who wants to just be good? We want to be great, so it just challenged them a little bit.”
It’s going to get worse on Tuesday with temperatures expected to rise and the team shifting to Memorial Stadium for another afternoon practice.
“The significance of FieldTurf is, it goes up about 15 to 20 degrees,” Pinkel said.
Pinkel participates in icy challenge
Missouri coach Gary Pinkel participated in the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge on Monday after practice.
The Tigers’ senior captains — defensive end Markus Golden, left tackle Mitch Morse, wide receiver Bud Sasser and strong safety Braylon Webb — did the honors. Morse and Golden dumped one Gatorade bucket and Sasser and Webb dumped another simultaneously.
For Pinkel, the cause is personal.
“I had a friend named Ray Dorr, who passed away years ago — a great man, a great coach — from Lou Gehrig’s disease,” Pinkel said. “It’s an ugly, ugly disease and hopefully what I’ve seen this do is raise awareness nationally for this cause, for research and hopefully help find an answer for this stuff.”
Pinkel, who was challenged by sophomore tight end Sean Culkin, passed the challenge along to MU Chancellor R. Bowen Loftin, ESPN’s John Anderson and Truman the Tiger, Mizzou’s mascot.
Senior wide receiver Jimmie Hunt is day-to-day with an injured hamstring. He suffered the injury late in practice Monday.
Senior defensive tackle Matt Hoch (pectoral strain) and sophomore linebacker Donavin Newsom (hamstring) returned to practice on a limited basis
Sophomore cornerback John Gibson (hamstring), sophomore running back Morgan Steward (hip), senior wide receiver Gavin Otte (high ankle sprain) and sophomore wide receiver Eric Laurent (hamstring/broken finger) remain out.