Pinkel hopes depth chart shake-ups will stop Missouri football's slump

Monday, October 10, 2011 | 11:05 p.m. CDT

COLUMBIA — After Saturday's performance against Kansas State, it should be no surprise that there were a number of shake-ups in Missouri's depth chart when it was released Monday afternoon.

Perhaps the most notable was the fact that coach Gary Pinkel has reopened the competition at place-kicker, where Grant Ressel had been a mainstay since the beginning of the 2009 season. There was an "OR" on the depth chart between Ressel and Trey Barrow.

"That simply means that between him and Trey Barrow we'll open it up for competition this week," Pinkel said. "Whoever wins the competition will do the kicking."

Ressel made a 32-yard field goal in Manhattan, Kan., but missed from 43 and 37 yards, bringing his season total on field goals to 7-for-13, and 1-for-5 in Big 12 play. In his first two years, Ressel was 43-for-46 on field goals. His drop in accuracy this year has been alarming enough to warrant questions, despite his strong career numbers.

"When I talked to him, I said, 'It's just like if we have a guard that's not getting his job done, or we have a quarterback or receiver that's not getting their job done, then what we have to do is find who's the best guy at this time to play for us," said offensive coordinator and kicking coach David Yost. "You try to wait as long as you can for that. Players kind of earn the right to have some struggles a little bit. He'd earned probably a little more rope than a lot of guys."

Ressel's wasn't the only "OR" added to Monday's depth chart. At nose guard, it's now Dominique Hamilton "OR" Sheldon Richardson.

"It's just to show that there's a lot of competition, and it's healthy, and it's good, and I think we're getting good work out of all those guys," Pinkel said.

Redshirt freshman Braylon Webb jumped ahead of Matt White on the depth chart as the starter at free safety as well.

Senior defensive end Jacquies Smith said the competition at different positions was there to create pressure to perform.

"You don't want a guy around here to have his mind at ease," Smith said. "You want him to have a sense of urgency and right now we have a sense of urgency going around this program."

Dings, Dents and Redshirts

  • Right guard Austin Wuebbels was listed as questionable for Saturday’s game with a sprained shoulder. In the meantime, Jack Meiners was listed as the starter.
  • Running back De'Vion Moore was back on the depth chart behind starter Henry Josey and Kendial Lawrence. Moore had previously been out with a sprained ankle he suffered against Arizona State on Sept. 9.
  • Pinkel announced that the team was going to try to redshirt linebacker Will Ebner, who was injured in the first half of the team's opener against Miami (Ohio) and has been out with a high ankle sprain ever since.
  • Pinkel also said that the team was going to try to appeal for a medical redshirt for left tackle Elvis Fisher. Fisher tore his patellar tendon during preseason practice.

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