March 12, 2007

Five under fire

On Sunday afternoon, we gave Missouri fans five big questions for spring football. With the first practice just more than 24 hours away, we zoom in on some individuals. Today, we take a look at five players who are under fire to have a solid spring.

Hardy Ricks: Ricks gets first shot to replace Domonique Johnson at cornerback. He played a lot last year and the growing pains have to be over. Ricks was up and down, as you would expect a rookie to be. But Missouri can't go with a guy who is up and down. They need consistency. Ricks needs to show he can give them that, or lose his job, this spring.

Van Alexander: The Rock Bridge product still has a world of potential. But more than even producing, Alexander needs to simply prove he can stay on the field. He enters spring as a starter and should enter fall as a starter. But he's got two true freshmen plus Marquis Booker breathing down his neck if he gets hurt again. Alexander can still be great, but he's got to start producing soon.

Adam Spieker: Spieker, at first glance, is a three-year starter and shouldn't be under any pressure. But the fact of the matter is, the shotgun snap was as big a problem in the last game as it was in the first. Spieker has simply got to be better there, or someone might step up and take his spot. Now, even if that happens, we anticipate he slides to guard and starts there. The kid can block, but it takes more than that at center.

...More... To continue reading this article you must be a member. Sign Up Now!