This spring, Coach Pinkel has indicated that Missouri’s QB position is open to competition, with the top three competitors rotating among the first, second, and third team offenses, getting an equal number of repetitions with each unit. One of those top three QBs is red-shirt freshman Maty Mauk, who often spent time during his red-shirt season last fall preparing to play in the event that another QB injury might occur.
Early this spring, Coach Pinkel called all of his QBs “great competitors”.
Later, the discussion turned specifically to Mauk.
“I think he’s maturing, and he’s a great competitor,” said Coach Pinkel, speaking about the progress that Mauk has made since his arrival at Missouri. “They’re (all) out there competing. It’s going to be interesting to see how that whole thing sorts out.”
ShowMeMizzou.com spoke with Mauk, and he sounded like he’s settled in at Mizzou.
“I’m a lot more confident in myself,” said Mauk. “Coach Henson kind of changed up the terminology. It’s made it a lot easier on everybody. I’m just coming in and competing this spring. I’m really confident in myself.”
Mauk said that each of Missouri’s QBs is capable of winning the competition for the starting job. He indicated that he really enjoys the competition.
“I love competition,” explained Mauk. “That’s why everybody is here, to compete and have fun every day. We’re all friends, so once we get on the field, the friendship is still there, but we all know that we have to fight for it.”
Because he enjoys the competition, Mauk doesn’t really feel the pressure to win the job.
“There’s pressure on everybody to win the job,” explained Mauk. “It’s an open competition, and everybody’s going to come out here and compete every day, and fight for that job. There’s pressure on everyone.”
Mauk feels much more comfortable with running the offense than he did last fall.
“I’m so much more composed with the offense,” explained Mauk. “Just because of the terminology, I feel so much better about it……………………………………It’s all coming together.”
Mauk is a true dual threat at the QB position. He’s more elusive than powerful as a runner, and he has a very strong throwing arm. He said that things started to click for him about halfway through the 2012 season.
Arm strength is not an issue for Mauk. When he has a clean line of sight between himself and the receiver, he just rifles the ball toward his receiver. And, he’s accurate enough with that type of throw, where he can just put the ball on a line to the receiver. But, he’s still struggling with accuracy on throws where he has to place the ball over a defender, or over defenders, and drop it into an opening. He does seem to have some awareness of what he needs to do to get better.
“I think I throw the out routes really well,” said Mauk. “If there’s one throw I need to work on, it’s probably the post routes. That’s the throws I have to work on.”
It’s encouraging that Mauk has that level of awareness. That’s the first step toward his continued development.