Comments from Gary Pinkel

Missouri football coach Gary Pinkel met with the media today, and he discussed, among other things, defensive end Lorenzo William's injury, the importance of Brandon Coleman and Gartrell Cooper's status -- or lack thereof.

On DE Lorenzo Williams:

"He has a strained ligament, and he's going to be fine. It's another example of the braces the way have, how we think that saves a player. We don't think he'll be ready to go possibly before the week after the break. Possibly, maybe next week. The good news is there's no surgery involved or anything else. Those braces have saved probably half a dozen players a year."

On redshirting in the middle of a career (specifically Marcus King and Calvin Washington):

"That was pretty important for us, program-wise because we played both those players when they weren't really ready to play, but we had so many problems and issues personnelwise that we did everything we could in fairness to them and in fairness to their ability level. So we (redshirted) Calvin and then we tried to do it with Marcus.

"As you all know, I'm very protective of redshirt years, and we were fortunate to get them. Now Marcus is getting back in, he's been on the scout team most of the time…Now it's getting the rust out."

On Marcus Woods:

"I think he's a special player, with his quickness, his speed and his athleticism. I also don't want to build any monuments before he does anything. You look at Damien Nash and Marcus Woods, those are two very high-level guys with potential to create a lot of plays."

On spring football for injured players like Tyrone Roberson and Brock Harvey:

"They gotta go to the meetings. The most important part is you just want to keep them involved. My big thing is that they stay ahead mentally. If they can get mental reps, obviously it's going to help them come back quicker."

On what he needs to see from Brandon Coleman:

"That's a big question, and it's kind of hard to put it in a few sentences. The bottom line that I and Coach Yost have to see is if he plays, can he win a championship? Bottom line, can he go in and run and move this football team. He's a redshirt sophomore, he's gotten a lot better. I've seen him do some good things, and I've also seen some bad things. That's typical. For a player to be able to play his redshirt sophomore year at a high level, you still have to be a pretty good football player at this level to do that. Bottom line, that's what it's going to be. He does he handle the ball, how does he manage the football team? How does he read out? Is he responsible with the football? With him, we obviously would do some different things. We have to analyze all those things. That's the million-dollar question. That's also something that you're faced with and you have a program and you have attrition at the quarterback position or any position. Obviously, there was a sense of urgency when Sonny left, and there's some concern. We're also going to let the two freshmen in and compete.

"Yes, he has skills, but can he handle the offense? Can you run the checks that you have to do in the running game? Can you check out of a bad play? Can you make sure you get out of the huddle with the 25-second clock and not take delay-of-games? Can you not throw it to the other guy? Can you go out there and make plays in critical situations. All those things. That's all gametime management. That's kind of where were at. You can see it, you can feel how it happens. I think he's made a lot of progress."

On DL Gartrell Cooper:

"Gartrell right now has left the program for personal reasons."

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