December 15, 2007

Back to practice

For the first time in two weeks, the Missouri Tigers were back on a football field Saturday morning. The team held its first practice in preparation for the Cotton Bowl.

"I thought it was an okay practice," Gary Pinkel said. "You try to get the timing back and also, we're spending a significant amount of time with players that are non-starters and they're not seniors, kind of a little bit of a spring ball atmosphere."

Pinkel gave the players the last two weeks to get completely away from football. They did have to lift weights a couple of times, but have not practiced and were encouraged to take some time off and concentrate on finals.

"It was great," Martin Rucker. "I felt like I was a college student."

"We got a chance to take care of school work, get done, get out of school," Carl Gettis said. "Now it's time to get back to practice."

One of the most talked about topics the last couple of weeks has been the health of Chase Coffman, who missed the second half against Kansas and did not play in the Big 12 Championship game against Oklahoma due to an ankle injury. Coffman was back on the field Saturday and expects to be ready to go on New Year's Day.

"It's still bothering me just a little bit," Coffman said. "I went through almost everything today and it's feeling a lot better."

Coffman said that he would have a scope on his ankle to remove some bone spurs following the Cotton Bowl, "but there is nothing really seriously wrong."

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