With critics lining up to pick apart quarterback James Franklin after his four-interception game on Saturday, Pinkel again went to bat for his quarterback Monday.
"He’s getting better – I'm totally committed to him, one-thousand percent," said Pinkel, who spoke during the weekly Tiger Quarterback Club meeting in Columbia.
Pinkel noted that with Franklin – who was making his first start since Oct. 6 – back in the lineup, MU moved the ball better than it had in weeks, and proceeded to explain away three of his interceptions. His mechanics failed him on the first two, Pinkel said, causing Franklin to overshoot his intended targets. Pinkel said the staff first noticed him doing this in practice last week, and tried to rectify the problem.
"He never did that a year ago, never sailed balls like that," Pinkel said. "He was a very accurate passer."
Pinkel attributed this recent phenomenon to rust caused by the assortment of injuries that have plagued him all year, particularly the sprained left knee he suffered against Vanderbilt a month ago.
“His timing’s off,” Pinkel said. “He tries to transfer his weight off his back foot to his left knee, and what happens is he doesn’t transfer his weight and the ball goes up. That’s kind of what we’re dealing with. The first two interceptions had nothing to do with decision-making – they were just errant throws.”
*Staley quarterback and Missouri commit Trent Hosick was named one of twelve finalists for the Wendy's High School Heisman Award, which honors exceptional students who bring excellence in academics, athletics and community service.
Hosick, a senior, will travel to New York City with the other 11 finalists, where two national winners – one male, one female – will receive a crystal Wendy’s High School Heisman trophy, a $10,000 donation to their respective high schools and recognition during the collegiate Heisman ceremony on Dec. 7.
*Missouri announced Monday that its home football game against Syracuse on Nov. 17 will start at 6 p.m. and air on ESPNU.
| Terez A. Paylor, email@example.com