Missouri State Bears Daily Preseason Football Reports
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It's game week at Missouri State! The Bears will practice Monday at 3 p.m. and Tuesday at 3:30 p.m. before an afternoon walk through Wednesday. Thank you for reading the daily practice reports, and we'll see you at Plaster Field Thursday night!
Sunday, August 31
After a day off Saturday, the Bears returned to Plaster Field Sunday for their first practice of "game week," spending a majority of the two-and-a-half hour workout on scout team work in preparation for Thursday night's season opener.
Saturday, August 30
The players had Saturday off with no meetings or practices.
Friday, August 29
Special teams work was the focus of Friday's abbreviated 21-period practice in shorts, helmets and shoulder pads at Plaster Field. The Bears' third-year head coach Terry Allen said the kicking game needed a little polishing after seeing some mistakes on Thursday evening.
"After last night's mock game, we needed to work a little on our special teams," said Allen. "We had very little contact at practice today, and we got some things done that we need to have in place for next week."
The team will have Saturday off before returning to practice Sunday at 3:30 p.m.
"I think the players are looking forward to having some time off," Allen said. "They'll have about 44 hours before we do some scout work Sunday afternoon, and that's good for them. With a Thursday opener, game week starts Sunday for us, and we're ready to get started."
Thursday, August 28
The Bears did not practice Wednesday, but did get a good work out with the team's "Mock Game" held in conjunction with the annual Women's Football University, hosted by Lynn Allen. The mock scrimmage was followed by Meet the Bears Night which allowed fans to meet the 2008 Bears and get autographs.
Wednesday, August 27
Defense was the name of the game at Plaster Field on Wednesday afternoon as the Bears' defenders came up big play after play in what Head Coach Terry Allen called a "dress rehearsal" for Thursday's mock game.
Also noteworthy on Wednesday, junior tight end Clay Harbor was named to the NCAA FCS All-American preseason second team by the College Sporting News.
Tuesday, August 26
MSU's 25-period practice Tuesday at Plaster Field was an impressive one for Coach Terry Allen and his staff. So much so that the Bears' third-year sideline boss gave his troops an early dismissal after putting in a hard day's work.
Monday, August 25
The mayhem of first day of classes at Missouri State goes hand-in-hand with the team's first school-year practice, according to MSU Head Coach Terry Allen.
Sunday, August 24
There were no on-field practices Sunday. The day consisted of eam meetings and the always-popular team talent show.
Saturday, August 23
Summer workouts officially ended Saturday for the Missouri State football team with the squad’s final scrimmage of the preseason.
The 68-play controlled scrimmage at Plaster Field brought a good crowd on a humid morning, but those in attendance got to see some great plays and a much-improved MSU squad.
“I think we really made a lot of progress through the first three weeks of practice, and we’re getting better every day,” said third-year Head Coach Terry Allen. “We got through camp without any serious injuries, and the weather has allowed us to do a lot more teaching.”
Cody Kirby (So., Rogers, Ark.) saw limited action, completing 8-of-9 passes for 57 yards and a pair of touchdowns both to All-American tight end Clay Harbor (Jr., Dwight, Ill.), while second-teamer Tyler Horner ( Jr., Dayton, Ohio) and freshman Jake Morse (Columbia, Mo.) each had seven completions and combined for three touchdown passes.
Kingjack Washington (So., Owasso, Okla.) carried just two times, but led the rushing attack with 40 total yards, including a 38-yard play, while sophomore Stephen Johnston (Arlington, Texas) scored a pair of touchdowns and finished with 36 yards on 10 carries.
Allen said the only disappointment Saturday was the penalty situation as his troops were whistled for 12 yellow flags.
“We asked the officials to call things very tight,” Allen said. “But with that many mistakes, you can put yourself in a tough situation on game day, so we have to get better on that.”
The Bears' defense gave up just 253 total yards, compared to 440 in last week’s scrimmage, collecting four sacks, three pass break-ups and three would-be blocked punts. Kolby Hurt (So., Boonville) led all players with 7 stops, while David Ingram (Fr., Springdale, Ark.), and Byron Hightower, Jr. (So., Raytown, Mo.) each had six tackles, and senior co-captain Jeremy Dawson (Grandview, Mo.) had five tackles.
2Q - Clay Harbor 6 pass from Cody Kirby (Matt Hottelman kick)
3Q - Jason Bromley 37 field goal
4Q - Brandon Oliver 16 pass from Tyler Horner (Hottelman kick)
Hottelman 40 field goal
Bromley 36 field goal
Corey Bailey 9 pass from Jake Morse (no PAT)
Stephen Johnston 5 run (no PAT)
Clay Harbor 5 pass from Kirby (no PAT)
Johnston 5 run (Hottelman kick)
Chad Peachey 7 pass from Horner (no PAT)
Jeran Trotter 5 run (no PAT)
RUSHING: Missouri State 33-77 -- Kingjack Washington 2-40, Stephen Johnston 10-36, Jeran Trotter 5-21, Miguel Warren 7-2, Tyler Horner 4-(-1), Jason Thomas 1-(-2), Jake Morse 3(-9), Team 1(-10).
PASSING: Missouri State 35-22-0/174 -- Tyler Horner 12-7-0/72, Cody Kirby 9-8-0/57, Jake Morse 14-7-0/47.
RECEIVING: Clay Harbor 4-23, Chase Mejia 3-37, Jeran Trotter 2-28, Brandon Oliver 2-17, Wes Miller 2-7, Chad Peachey 2-6, Kingjack Washington 1-15, Corey Bailey 1-9, Chris Geisz 1-9, Adrian Taylor 1-9, Justin Fuselier 1-7, Stephen Johnston 1-6, Skyler Neale 1-3.
PUNTING: Jacob Murphy 4-40.0, Jordan Chiles 4/45.0.
FIELD GOALS: Jason Bromley 2/2 (made 37, made 36); Matt Hottelman 1/2 (missed 30, made 40).
DEFENSIVE LEADERS: Kolby Hurt (7 TT), David Ingram (6 TT), Byron Hightower, Jr. (6 TT), Jeremy Dawson (5 TT), Sam Block (4 TT), Skylar Smith (4 TT, 1 Sack, 1 BP), Cedric Alvis (3 TT), Waylon Richardet (3 TT), Nick Detelich (3 TT), Russell Brown (2 PBU).
Friday, August 22
On the eve of the team's final scrimmage of the 2008 preseason, Coach Terry Allen's Bears had a shorter, 20-period practice session Friday afternoon at Plaster Field with extended work on special teams and PAT/field goal situations as well as attention to decision making.
Thursday, August 21
A day after being named as one of the team's five co-captains, senior Roger Wright (Grandview, Mo.) made the play of the day during the Bears' 18th practice of the preseason Thursday afternoon at Plaster Field. The team's starting safety blocked a field goal during two-minute drills, sparking the defensive unit at the end of practice in what has been a great week for Defensive Coordinator D.J. Vokolek's troops.
"It was a great effort by Roger Wright," said Head Coach Terry Allen. "To get a blocked field goal during two-minute drills, that's the kind of play that wins football games. That was a big-time play."
The team also worked on alignment during the 25-period, full-gear practice and utilized game officials to work on their no-huddle offense utilizing the new NCAA play-clock rules. The officials helped explain the finer points of the new rule and helped the team prepare for the transition.
The Bears have one more practice Friday in advance of the final scrimmage of the fall season at 10 a.m. Saturday.
Wednesday, August 20
The Bears' final day of two-a-days started and ended in the rain Wednesday, but the team's morning session took on a unique feel with some special additions.
Tuesday, August 19
Practice No. 15 of the preseason for Missouri State provided some highlight reel moments. The 26-period afternoon session on the team's grass practice fields featured the typical lineup of drills, situational plays, and conditioning, but a needed boost seemed to come from a familiar face.
"Clay Harbor is a special football player," said Head Coach Terry Allen. "And today, he made some plays that demonstrated that."
Harbor's big-time plays seemed to spark his teammates on both sides of the ball, leading to a red-letter day for the Bears.
"Today was a good day," Allen said. "Our guys competed very well. The offense looked good, and our defense is getting better every day."
Tuesday was also move-out day for the team as they were able to relocate to their permanent housing for the semester and out of the team's preaseason camp dormitory. Wednesday brings two more practices to the team's agenda -- an early-morning 8:10 practice and a shorter afternoon practice at 4:10.
Monday, August 18
The team's second week of two-a-days started bright and early Monday with a 24-period session on the FieldTurf at Plaster Sports Complex. The Bears spent the first half hour of the 8 a.m. session working on footwork, agility, pursuit, blocking, reaction, and general game strategy. The last 90 minutes was spent working on kickoff coverage and returns as well as extended PAT/field goal assignments. The practice also included situational offense and defense, including third-down and team work drills and some seven-on-seven passing.
"I'm superstitious," said Coach Terry Allen at the conclusion of the morning practice. "Nobody got hurt in our 13th practice, and that's always a good thing."
The Bears, whose starting quarterback Cody Kirby wears No. 13, held an 18-period afternoon practice on the grass practice fields. Most of the afternoon practice was spent perfecting game-day situations, getting players accustomed to the team's no-huddle offense, and some additional conditioning work.
Allen also pointed out that the week ahead is a tough one for his squad from a mental standpoint with team members moving out of their temporary dorm surroundings, finalizing fall class registration, and other considerations in advance of the start of fall semester classes next Monday.
Sunday, August 17
The Bears had a series of meetings along with scheduled physical rehabilitation and treatment Sunday. There were no on-field practices.
Saturday, August 16
Stephen Johnsston (So., Arlington, Texas) had touchdown runs of 3 and 5 yards, while Jeran Trotter (So., Wichita, Kan.) averaged nearly 9 yards per carry on six rushing attempts to highlight Missouri State’s offense during its first scrimmage of the 2008 season Saturday at Plaster Field.
The only other offensive touchdown on the afternoon went to Miguel Warren (Jr., Raytown, Mo.) who had a 1-yard touchdown run in the fourth period.
Starting quarterback Cody Kirby (So., Rogers, Ark.) completed 12-of-17 passes for 138 yards on the afternoon, including an impressive 40-yard connection with Elliott Brown (Fr., Chicago, Ill.) early in the second quarter. Kirby was picked off once when senior Chris Farrar (St. Louis, Mo.) stopped a long drive with an impressive interception and return on the far sideline.
“This is as good as it gets on the defensive side of the ball,” said Allen. “They created four turnovers, and they weren’t gifts. It was a good lesson for our offense that turnovers stop you from scoring and finishing good drives.”
The interception by Farrar paired by three fumble recoveries helped the defensive unit walk tall at the end of the day.
“That’s what we’re looking for,” Allen explained. “All in all, we saw a lot of good things from a coaching standpoint today.”
Though MSU’s offense finished with 440 yards on 88 plays (5.0), 31 defensive players recorded tackles, including a team-best seven stops by sophomore Sam Block (Ozark, Mo.) to go with six apiece by Chris Miller (Sr., Blue Springs, Mo.), Tony Randolph (So., Blue Springs, Mo.), Nick Deitlich (Fr., Springfield, Mo.). Randolph, Levi Moore (So., Mountain View, Mo.) and Jimmie Strong (Fr., Texarkana, Texas) each had fumble recoveries for the defense, while the defensive unit tallied six total sacks.
The team will have Sunday off before returning to a two-a-day practice Monday at Plaster Field at 8:05 a.m. and 4:05 p.m.
Friday, August 15
Friday afternoon's practice at Plaster Field was not one that Coach Terry Allen and his staff will put in the Missouri State football archives. Despite several big plays and great individual efforts, Allen noted that the team's overall performance and execution was not up to his standards.
"This was our worst practice of the fall," he said. "I don't know if we were looking ahead to tomorrow's scrimmage, or the change in schedule messed them up, or what happened today, but we still have some work to do."
The Bears practiced 26 periods Friday working on agility and reaction exercises, punting, and kickoff coverage/returns in the first 45 minutes before spending the remainder of practice working on the standard seven-on-seven, third-down, red-zone, and move-the-chains drills.
Saturday's 3 p.m. scrimmage will feature around 100 total plays in a controlled setting. Allen stated his goal for Saturday was to "play injury free," and show dramatic improvement. Fans are welcome to attend Saturday's intrasquad event at Plaster Field.
Thursday, August 14
"It was perfect weather," said Coach Terry Allen of Thursday's two-a-day session at Missouri State. "I keep going back to that, but it's really helps our players keep competing, and it helps us sort through a lot of things in a variety of areas."
The overcast and mild day in Springfield included a morning practice at Plaster Field in full pads before an afternoon session on the grass practice fields in helmets and shoulder pads. The first practice consisted of 24 periods, including work on the kicking game, goal-line and short-yardage drills, two-minute drills and conditioning. The later practice was 18 periods with position drills, seven-on-seven passing, third-down situations and move-the-chains exercises.
"The players competed all day on both sides of the ball," Allen said. "We made some plays throwing the ball deep in the morning and afternoon sessions, and that's a key thing for our offense to be successful."
Wednesday, August 13
The Bears returned to Plaster Field for Wednesday's morning practice and spent most of the 25-period session working on situational plays. Red-zone, third-down, and move-the-chains drills kept both units busy, along with an extended session of seven-on-seven passing.
"You always worry a little bit about a morning practice right after your first two-a-day," said Head Coach Terry Allen. "It's tough for the players, and it's a challenge for them to stay mentally focused. We worked on a lot of things this morning, and got a lot of repetition with some situational plays. All things considered, I think we made progress and got a lot accomplished."
The maroon and white also got extended kickoff return practice, while the defense put in time working on its pass rushing. The mild temperatures kept things tolerable for the conditioning drills that closed out the practice after more than two hours on the turf. Weight training and team meetings were in store for the squad Wednesday afternoon.
Tuesday, August 12
The team's first "two-a-day" practice date was also the first test date for the Missouri State players, according to Head Coach Terry Allen. "Two-a-days are a great opportunity to see how physically and mentally tough the players are," Allen explained. "We have a limited number of days when we have two practices, and our first two-a-day session is always a big test for our players."
The morning session was 25 periods and consisted of some basic conditioning, play implementation, and the installation of the team's two-minute offense. The new NCAA rules regarding the 40-second and 25-second play clock were emphasized with the late-game offensive drills. The team also worked on the kicking game and special teams assignments in the morning session.
The shorter, 18-period afternoon session took Coach Allen's toughness test to task as the players bounced back from the morning practice with a basic practice regimen on an otherwise mild-weathered afternoon on the grass practice fields.
"The weather has really worked to our advantage," Allen said. "When players have to contend with heat and humidity, it really affects their mental awareness and concentration. When the weather is more tolerable like today, we can get a lot more teaching done, and it's a lot more productive session for us as coaches."
Monday, August 11
After spending their first four practices at Plaster Field, the Bears moved to the grass practice fields Monday morning for a two-and-a-half hour session. "This is when it starts to become a true preseason," said third-year Head Coach Terry Allen. "With eight practices in the next five days, things start to become more physically demanding for our players, but I'm happy with the way they're handling it."
The team's first session in full pads and helmets saw some basic play implementation, situational offensive and defensive work, conditioning, and kicking game drills. "I'm happy with the way everyone came out and practiced hard," Allen reported of his team's first morning practice. "We're headed in the right direction."
The freshly-painted Missouri Valley Football Conference logos on the Plaster Field turf will keep the team on the grass practice fields again for Tuesday's session -- the squad's first "two-a-day" appointment on the preseason calendar.
Sunday, August 10
The team participated in a series of meetings Sunday with the team freshman also taking part in an evening orientation session. There was no on-field practice.
Saturday, August 9
The team's second practice in helmets and shoulder pads was hampered by rain this afternoon, but Coach Terry Allen turned the lemons of a damp Saturday into lemonade. "We tried to beat the weather, but weren't able to," said Allen. "However, the rain gave us a chance to see how we perform in the elements -- which is always important -- and I was really happy with how our players responded."
The 26-period practice lasted two-and-a-half hours and included conditioning, play implementation and the team's general practice regimen. The squad, which consists of just 26 upper classmen, also continued working on general team acclamation, special teams and detail work in a series of position meetings.
Friday, August 8
The casual temperatures and moderate pace of Thursday's practice and Media Day were gone Friday as the the Bears conducted their first session in helmets and shoulder pads in Friday afternoon's heat. The 27-period practice session was a fast-paced and challenging event for Coach Terry Allen's troops with attention focused on play familiarity and acclamation.
The day also featured three sessions of position meetings and a brief evening team meeting. "It was a great day to work on conditioning, some basic play development and overall acclamation," Allen said. "We stretched practice out a bit and tried to get a better feel for where everybody is at this point."
Thursday, August 7
The team’s second day on campus started with game-day attire check-out for the annual Missouri State Football Media Day at Plaster Sports Complex. After team photos, group photos, video mug shots, and interviews on a relatively-cool and overcast morning for Media Day, the team spent most of the afternoon in meetings before a 4 p.m. practice.
The team’s final practice without pads saw the installation of some special team packages, general conditioning and running through some 11-on-11 plays. The performance of the team’s new receivers impressed Coach Terry Allen as did the effort of his defensive unit. “The defense played really well today, and I was very proud of them,” he noted.
Wednesday, August 6
Players reported to campus for physicals, equipment issue and dorm check-in this morning. After lunch and a team meeting at Plaster Student Union, the Bears met with Compliance Director Kyle Yates and additional unit and position meetings. The team’s first practice of the season was highlighted by what Coach Terry Allen called a “surprisingly impressive” performance by the team’s punters and some general heat acclamation in shorts and t-shirts. The team’s first day on campus concluded with evening meetings with Athletic Trainer Steve Sawchak and Sports Information Director Rick Kindhart, followed by brief positional meetings.