Every month is ‘Mauktober’.
Missouri’s leader now becomes the face of the offense, especially after Dorial Green-Beckham’s dismissal. Maty Mauk entered spring having to win a position and compete just like everyone else, but there was little question he would exit spring as ‘the guy’.
Mauk recently talked to ESPN about losing Green-Beckham and other receivers who can step in and help fill the massive void left behind by DGB, L’Damian Washington and Marcus Lucas.
“You’ve got Darius [White] and Bud [Sasser] on the outside who are 6-3, 6-4 guys that run routes that are nice, crisp routes,” Mauk said of his seniors. “I know them so well that I feel like we can run anything and be able to do whatever we want down the field together. And then you look inside at Jimmie [Hunt]. Jimmie’s been here for a while. He’s played. He’s a tremendous guy in there.
“Levi [Copelin], he’s stepping in. He brings something to the table that we might not have had. … J’Mon Moore, who was a freshman last year, he’s going to be something. I’m expecting huge things. That’s a guy I’m on every day. He’s really got to step up, especially with Dorial gone.”
Mauk is a wildcard entering 2014. From what we saw last year, he can be elite under center if his game improves this offseason. He threw for 1,071 yards and 11 touchdowns, compared to just two INTs, and he finished with a 3-1 record while stepping in for James Franklin. However, the concern revolves around his completion percentage. He completed just 51.1 percent of his passes and lacked some noticeable touch on short to intermediate routes. Two of the four defenses – Florida and South Carolina – were elite. He completed 50 percent or less against both.
People who say that Missouri isn’t here to stay and 2013 was a fluke turnaround motivate Mauk and his teammates.
“Everybody is picking us to be down at the bottom of the SEC East again,” Mauk said. “That’s just motivation for us. We just want to come out here and keep proving people wrong.”
Mauk should enter 2014 on several darkhorse Heisman lists. He enters on mine, and even without Franklin, a cast of wide receivers and Henry Josey, Mauk could help take the Tigers’ offense back to an elite level.