Eight freshmen are listed on Missouri’s initial depth chart of the season, which also has sophomore quarterback Drew Lock listed as QB1 ahead of fellow sophomore Marvin Zanders.
Fall camp apparently made the difference for Lock, a Lee’s Summit graduate who started the final eight games in 2015 and was considered the favorite to start.
“When you look at what he’s done from the first day of fall camp until today, he looks like a different player,” Tigers coach Barry Odom said.
Zanders has made enough strides during the offseason, Odom said he’ll also see the field in 2016.
“Marvin has proved himself that he’s going to help us win football games, so I’m excited about both quarterbacks and the way they can efficiently run the offense,” Odom said.
The first-year players on the depth chart include kicker Tucker McCann, who will handle kickoff duties but is still battling junior walk-on Turner Adams for field-goal duties.
Additionally, wide receiver Dimetrios Mason is listed as co-starter with sophomore Emanuel Hall.
Offensive linemen Trystan Castillo and Tre’Vour Simms, linebacker Cale Garrett, cornerbacks Christian Holmes and DeMarkus Acy and running back/kick returner Damarea Crockett also made the two-deep as true freshmen.
There are three players — redshirt freshman Johnathon Johnson, senior Chris Black and sophomore Ray Wingo — listed as co-starters at slot receiver, while junior Jordan Harold won the position battle to start opposite Charles Harris at defense end.
Senior John Gibson also took advantage of redshirt freshman T.J. Warren’s extended absence with a hamstring injury in training camp to earn the starting job opposite Aarion Penton at cornerback.
Hanneke put on scholarship
Tyler Hanneke is one of those kids without a page in the 2015 Mizzou media guide.
As a walk-on, he was a mostly anonymous defensive end throughout his career in Columbia, but that changed Sunday when he was put on scholarship.
Odom grabbed Hanneke, who already earned a bachelor’s degree in public management and recently switched to tight end, along with Joe Jon Finley to deliver the news.
“It was pretty cool,” said Hanneke, a St. Charles West graduate. “The best part was definitely calling my parents and hearing their voices.”
Hanneke, who is working on a master’s in positive coaching, said his mom, Laurie, cried.
“He’s a starter on some of our special teams units,” Odom said. “He’s a kid that deserves everything he’s getting at this point and continues to do it every day and practice.”
Hanneke starts on the punt, kickoff return and extra-point teams.
Luebbert earns conference award
With two goals, including the game-winner Sunday against Colorado, Missouri freshman forward Sarah Luebbert was chosen as the Southeastern Conference freshman of the week.
Luebbert’s 94th-minute goal delivered a 2-1 overtime win against the Buffaloes and she also found the net in a 3-2 overtime win Friday against Illinois.