Missouri enters the 2011 season with four returning senior starters along the offensive line. ShowMeMizzou.com spoke with the one who graded out the highest last season, and learned a few things about three-time First-Team Academic All-Big 12 OL Austin Wuebbels 6'4" 300. Wuebbels talked about heading into his senior season.
"It's exciting to come back out here," said Wuebbels. "We had a tough summer. So now, we get to come out and put the pads on, and start hitting. It's always fun! I'm excited this last go 'round, so I'm just going to give it my all."
During the summer, in addition to working on his fundamentals, Wuebbels set a program record in the weight room. ShowMeMizzou.com asked him about it.
"Yeah, I did 225 (pounds), 45 times. I set the school record for that. And then, I tied the record for bench at 500 (pounds). And, at the Pro Day, I ran a 5.21 (forty). I was pretty stoked about that," replied Wuebbels, who also said that the entire offensive line really worked hard this summer. "This summer, we held ourselves to a higher standard, just trying to knock it out."
Wuebbels expressed confidence that Missouri's offensive line will control the line of scrimmage on Saturdays. He talked about the depth on the offensive line.
"We're stacked," said Wuebbels. "Mitch Morse, he's a great player! We've got Jack (Meiners). He's as strong as an ox. Big Free. He's huge! We've got Gatti. I mean, all of the way around. Justin Britt, he's athletic, a helluva guy! I mean, we're just stacked. We've got plenty of depth."
I asked Wuebbels about Missouri's new starting QB, sophomore James Franklin.
"I think James is a terrific guy! I have all of the belief in him. I mean, he's going to do great this year," explained the senior offensive lineman. "He's a good character. He's a hard worker, and I don't think he'll let himself not be great.......................... During the summer, I know he was working hard, becoming a leader, and just doing everything right............................. He's an excellent QB, and he has many of the qualities that a QB should have."
I asked Wuebbels about Missouri's run game.
"I think the running game is going to open up for us quite a bit this year," replied Wuebbels. "I'm excited! We're in a three-point stance. So, we'll definitely get to smash some people around this year."
"I'm excited about this offense," said Wuebbels. "I mean, it's looking good! I can't wait to face some people. I think we're going to be really good on offense. Our tempo is quick, which is nice. And, I'm just ready to get it on!"