Second-year Missouri coach Barry Odom delivered a mix of good news and bad news on the personnel front Thursday during a meeting with reporters ahead of the start of spring football next week.
Defensive tackle Rashad Brandon — a 6-foot-3, 305-pound February signee from Jersey City, N.J., via ASA College in Brooklyn — enrolled for the spring and will be available for practice.
Brandon, who has three years to complete two seasons of eligibility, was the No. 8 junior college defensive prospect, according to ESPN.
That alleviates some pressure with only A.J. Logan, who’s entering his senior season, returning from last fall’s end-of-year depth chart.
“We’ve got to be smart with how many reps A.J. Logan gets,” Odom said. “he can’t go with the ones, the twos and the threes. Getting Rashad Brandon in here will, number one, help us; two, I think he’s going to be a really good player; and, three, for him to be able to go through practice is a huge positive.”
Tyrell Jacobs, a redshirt freshman last season, and walk-on Adam Roland, a redshirt sophomore last season, are Mizzou’s only other healthy interior defensive linemen.
Defensive tackles Terry Beckner Jr., who is entering his junior season, and Markell Utsey, who will be a sophomore, will be “very, very limited” during spring practice while rehabilitating from ACL surgeries last fall.
“Every defensive end is going to spend a day inside, because it’s good for them to get in there,” Odom said. “… We’ll be creative enough to get the work done we need to.”
Running back Ish Witter, who will be a senior, and safety Cam Hilton, who will be a junior, also will limited after undergoing shoulder procedures after the 2016 season.
Odom said Witter “has gone through every workout,” but that he’ll still have limited contact during the spring along with Hilton.
“All four are really, so far, ahead of schedule (in rehab),” Odom said. “You don’t want to hold them back … but also I don’t want to rush them back too quickly right now and have them do something that they don’t need to do right now.”
Additionally, Odom confirmed that rising junior tight end Kendall Blanton, a Blue Springs South graduate, will be out for spring practice after ankle surgery, confirming a report in The Star last week.
Baldwin to transfer
Linebacker Trey Baldwin, who appeared in three games primarily on special teams last season as a true freshman, has decided to transfer.
He announced the decision on Twitter and Odom confirmed the Baldwin’s departure.
“He’s met with the compliance office and is transferring,” Odom said.
Baldwin is the ninth player to leave the program during the offseason.
Defensive end Charles Harris declared early for the NFL Draft and is participating in the NFL Combine this weekend in Indianapolis.
Wide receiver Keyon Dilosa was dismissed, while quarterback Marvin Zanders, running back Ryan Williams, safety Greg Taylor, offensive lineman Tanner Owen, defensive tackle Josh Moore and wide receiver DeSean Blair opted to leave the Tigers.