Posts Tagged ‘Missouri’

2014 NFL Draft Prospect Breakdown: Michael Sam

Monday, February 17th, 2014

After an outstanding senior season, Missouri’s Michael Sam projects as a Day 3 pick in the 2014 NFL Draft. (Photo: Tim Heitman — USA Today Sports)

BBD Editor: Dan Hope

Michael Sam became internationally known after publicly revealing his homosexuality Feb. 9, but NFL scouts and college football fans should have already been well aware of the 2013 SEC Defensive Player of the Year and consensus first-team All-American.

Sam’s revelation is brave and ground-breaking, as he attempts to make it in a league that has never had an active openly gay player.

He should be praised, for his courage could lead the way for other publicly homosexual athletes to receive professional opportunities, and congratulated, for being comfortable with who he is despite the uncertainty and discrimination he likely has faced and will continue to face.

His sexuality, however, says nothing about his ability to play football, which is what ultimately puts him in position to break an NFL barrier.

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2014 Cotton Bowl Prospect Preview: Missouri vs. Oklahoma State

Thursday, January 2nd, 2014

Justin Gilbert is one of two potential first-round picks to watch at cornerback in Friday’s Cotton Bowl. (Photo: Brace Hemmelgarn — USA Today Sports)

BBD Staff Writer: Joe Marino

Both teams in the Cotton Bowl are coming off disappointing losses that cost them opportunities to play in a BCS bowl game. Missouri fell, 59-42, to Auburn in the SEC Championship Game, while Oklahoma State lost, 33-24, to in-state rival Oklahoma in its final game of the regular season

The game’s talent pool is headlined by two potential first-round pick cornerbacks in Oklahoma State’s Justin Gilbert and Missouri’s EJ Gaines. Gilbert will be matched up against the tall, physical receiving corps of Missouri, which should be make for a competitive matchup.

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Joe Marino’s Senior Wide Receiver Rankings for the 2014 NFL Draft

Friday, November 29th, 2013

Vanderbilt’s Jordan Matthews is the star among the senior class of wide receivers. (Photo: Don McPeak — USA Today Sports)

BBD Staff Writer: Joe Marino

The wide receiver position is generally dominated in the draft by underclassmen, but there are plenty intriguing senior wide receiver prospects in the 2014 NFL draft.

Jordan Matthews is the clear No. 1 player of the group, but there are plenty of other prospects who look like solid No. 2 receivers and potential slot guys.

As with all rankings, these are fluid, and wide receiver is a position where names will continue to emerge as the process goes on, especially once underclassmen begin to declare.

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Joe Marino’s Senior Defensive End Rankings for the 2014 NFL Draft

Friday, November 22nd, 2013

Stanford’s Trent Murphy stands out as the top defensive end of the senior class. (Photo: Jason O. Watson — USA Today Sports)

BBD Staff Writer: Joe Marino

The 2014 senior crop of defensive ends is full of hybrid type players who may project to play 4-3 defensive end or 3-4 outside linebacker at the next level. I based these rankings off of the positions these players primarily play in college, so all of the players ranked currently play defensive end.

The class doesn’t have any sure-fire top ten players but there are plenty of players with starter upside.

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Joe Marino’s Senior Cornerback Rankings for the 2014 NFL Draft

Friday, November 8th, 2013

Oklahoma State’s Justin Gilbert has climbed to the top of the senior cornerback rankings. (Photo: Brace Hemmelgarn — USA Today Sports)

BBD Staff Writer: Joe Marino

Cornerback is emerging as one of the most important positions in football. With more and more NFL offenses putting four- and five-receiver sets on the field, it is imperative to have depth at the cornerback position.

I put more emphasis than many people do on cornerbacks’ run-stopping ability considering the need for defensive backs to be able to stop the run when playing against the spread. Physicality was also a trait that I looked for in my evaluations. It is important to be able to disrupt routes and timing of the offense with a good physical presence in press coverage.

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