Stories by Brent
Jefferson City football fans may want to keep a roster handy the first few weeks of the season. That’s because the Jays are breaking in a new quarterback, new receivers, a new secondary, a new defensive line, a new offensive line and other assorted parts. The list goes on and on for a Jefferson City squad hungry to return to state prominence after a 7-4 season in 2012.
There was a time when Missouri quarterback James Franklin might have been considered one of college football’s rising quarterbacks. He finished the 2011 season with 3,846 yards of total offense, the fifth-highest mark in school history. He appeared ready to be the quarterback to lead Missouri into the Southeastern Conference. But after finishing with nearly 300 yards of total offense in the 2011 Independence Bowl victory against North Carolina, things seemed to spiral out of control.
Throughout fall camp there were plenty of questions surrounding Missouri’s defense. Who would step in and fill the gap on the defensive line left by Sheldon Richardson? Which defensive back would take pressure off all-conference cornerback E.J. Gaines? There weren’t a lot of questions about the middle.
In a perfect world, a team’s lineup would be ironed out when the season opens. That’s not the case for the Jefferson City softball team this season. There could be some tinkering into the middle of the season.
The Jefferson City Lady Jays golf team got a taste of success last year. Now their coach wants to take the next step. After reaching sectionals last season, Jefferson City head coach Randy Bickel said he believes this year’s squad could get to the state meet as a team.
Something was missing when Missouri head coach Gary Pinkel met with the media Monday: There was no injury report.
Missouri running back Henry Josey is back. And he doesn’t care who knows it. So excited to get back into game action, Josey shaved “I’m Back” into the back of his head for the beginning of fall camp earlier this month.
At this time of year, all any coach can ask for is improvement from play to play. During Jefferson City’s Red and Black Scrimmage on Friday at Adkins Stadium, that’s exactly what they saw out of quarterback Gabe Marcantonio. The first-year starter settled in as the scrimmage went on, seeming to grow more comfortable.
Missouri’s quarterback competition officially closed last week when head coach Gary Pinkel named senior quarterback James Franklin the starter. But that doesn’t mean backup Maty Mauk won’t see the field.
Jefferson City Jays football players on Tuesday evening handed over their jerseys to their mothers to take part in Mom’s Night at Adkins Stadium, a nice distraction as the season opener on Aug. 31 looms.
There was a time last season when Jefferson City football coach Ted LePage wasn’t sure what he had in linebacker Hayden Strobel. But in the fifth game of the season against DeSmet, LePage saw it all click ....
In an announcement that had long been anticpated, Missouri coach Gary Pinkel announced he had decided to name James Franklin as the starting quarterback for the Tigers.
Missouri’s receiving corps showed two sides in Saturday’s first scrimmage of fall camp. Marcus Lucas and Jaleel Clark each hauled in touchdowns of more than 65 yards, showing the group’s deep-threat potential. But Missouri’s receivers were plagued by several dropped passes and they made a few mistakes in route running. For an offense that struggled to find any rhythm last year, the Tigers need as many positive moments as possible from its experienced group of receivers.
Coach Pinkel holds football walk-ons in high regard
When former School of the Osage Indian Ryan Edwards first arrived to play football as a walk-on at Missouri, one might say things were a little exclusionary.
Franklin gets most first-team snaps in Saturday’s scrimmage
Missouri’s first scrimmage of fall practice came and went with the battle for the starting quarterback remaining unsettled. Although there are hints the competition may be nearing its conclusion.
Missouri quarterback James Franklin hasn’t won the starting quarterback job. But he’s won over his teammates, including one competing for his job. After a rough season full of injuries that saw Franklin take a lot of criticism from fans, his teammates seem to be behind the senior 100 percent.
COLUMBIA — For all the trouble Missouri had with its offensive line a year ago, there is a silver lining: Experience gained.
Once August hits, it’s all business for members of the Missouri football team.
Hope move helps keep them fresh
Known as someone who can be very set in his ways, Missouri football coach Gary Pinkel called an audible during the offseason. As a way to try and stay fresh and avoid the injury bug that has haunted the Tigers in the last two seasons, the coach decided to change up his team’s practice routine.
A few Mid-Missouri high school football teams came close to breaking a drought last season. And there’s reason to think a few of those teams could finish the job this year.
When Missouri opened fall football camp last year, the coaching staff adorned shirts emblazoned with “Respect” on the back.
How will Missouri respond to its first losing season since 2004? Is Gary Pinkel on the hot seat? Will James Franklin start the entire season at quarterback? Will the offense look any different under new coordinator Josh Henson?
New Jefferson City High School activities director Mark Caballero is no stranger to success. He comes to Jefferson City High School after a successful stint at Ozark High School where winning became the norm.
The end of the 2014 NFL season is just more than 17 months away. In other words, the St. Louis Rams may be the St. Louis Rams for only 17 more months.
While meeting with his team after the first day of summer camp, Jefferson City wrestling coach Phil Cagle had a clear message for his squad. It was a message especially important for a young team that will include just two seniors this season.
After more than 100 years of competition in the Mid-America Intercollegiate Athletics Association, a founding member has moved on. Monday marked the official first day in the Great Lakes Valley Conference for Truman State.
It’s inevitable that with time comes change.
LeeAnn Polowy was hoping to commit to a college before the rush of the fall and high-school ball started back up. She did just that Wednesday as the Blair Oaks senior committed to play basketball at Missouri State.
The reason isn’t as important as the fact. The University of Missouri has appeared to make a concerted effort to ramp up its non-conference home basketball schedule.
WARDSVILLE — When the Blair Oaks’ girls basketball team takes the floor next season, it won’t come as much of a secret the team will be smaller and less experienced inside.
The high school baseball season wrapped up one week ago with the final state championship games. But it’s already back to work for the Jefferson City Jays.
If the Jefferson City volleyball team learned something last season, it’s that defense does matter. Ozark showed the Lady Jays just how much it mattered in the state quarterfinals. So as the Lady Jays held summer camp this week at Fleming Fieldhouse, it was no surprise head coach Christine Meyer made sure defense was on the mind of her players.
It isn’t hard to find the theme of Jefferson City’s offseason activities: Competition. After seven Jays signed to play college football on signing day (and more are likely to find a spot on college rosters), summer has been a chance to see who will step into new positions.
To say there was uncertainty Friday for the Fatima Comets would be an understatement.
The Fatima baseball team used clutch hitting and strong starting pitching to reach the Final Four. It was only fitting that combination ended up leading the Comets to a state championship.
Fourteen hours after he started it, Seth Lehmen finished it.
Fatima sure knew how to make its first Final Four in 17 years exciting. Or, at least the weather did.
There’s little doubt the Jefferson City basketball team is going to be busy this summer.
Joey Burkett is hoping to save his best for the very last minute.
Because the NBA requires players to be at least 19-years old and one year removed from high school before becoming eligible to be drafted, many of the elite high school players see college as nothing more than a one-year finishing school.
Races to title in spite of incorrect lap counter
Linn senior Tyler Rush was on his way to his first career state track title. Or at least that’s what he thought.
Takes Class 2 state title
South Callaway’s Garner Rudroff had not competed in the long jump prior to this year. But he said he’s always been good at jumping.
The Class 1 and 2 Missouri State High School Activities Association Track and Field Championships at Dwight T. Reed Stadium was the first time the South Callaway 4x100-meter relay team had run together this year.
The Russellville Indians did almost everything right in Wednesday night’s Class 2 District 8 title game against Linn. That is except for the postgame celebration. Russellville coach Lucas Branson was a little too quick when his team tried to give him a bath of water after the game.
It was a season of firsts for the Blair Oaks golf team.
With an early 5-2 lead against Camdenton, the Jefferson City baseball team appeared like it might have broken out of the late-season funk that had plagued it for the last two weeks.
The Jays pounced on the Blue Devils for six runs in the first inning. That was more than enough for senior Cameron Carroll, who tossed a complete-game shutout as the Jays rolled to an 8-0 victory at Vivion Field on Senior Night.
Rock Bridge scored seven runs with two outs and knocked off Jefferson City 9-3 in an important battle of top-five teams at Vivion Field.
Jefferson City pitcher Travis Hennessy spent this week of practice working to develop a more consistent changeup. He did that and more Thursday night. Hennessy pitched a two-hit shutout as the Jays downed South Callaway 6-0.
No one ever said Missouri receiver Dorial Green-Beckham was an ordinary football recruit. His presence on campus was anticipated more than any player in recent memory. He was shielded from the media as much as possible and had immediate expectations placed on him few players, if any, likely could have lived up to. So after a freshman season in which the receiver made more headlines off the field than on, the former top-ranked recruit is confident he’s made strides to become a better receiver.