It's only September, but if everything holds, then the Tigers already have most of their 2014 class locked in. Boasting a whopping 20 commitments, Missouri head coach Gary Pinkel has put together a group of incoming freshmen that the 247Composite ranks among the top 40 in the country.
And yet, as the Tigers are finding out, that may not cut it in the SEC, where a 40th-ranked class is only good for 14th place in the conference -- both in points and in average player rating. Missouri is also the only SEC team without a commitment from a 4-star player.
It's been a busy August for Pinkel and company, though. In the last month, the Tigers have added four more recruits to their class -- safety Tavon Ross from Cochran (Ga.) Bleckley County, a pair of athletes in Stepfawn Hughes from Fort Worth (Tx.) Dunbar and Marvin Xanders from Jacksonville (Fla.) Raines, as well as running back Trevon Walters out of Bradenton (Fla.) Manatee. All four are 3-star players according to the 247Composite, and part of a relatively steady class coming together -- in fact, all 20 players currently committed to Missouri are ranked as 3 stars by the 247Composite.
With a 247Composite score of .8193, Ross is Missouri's second-highest-rated recruit so far, trailing only cornerback Logan Cheadle's .8381. Cheadle, a Missouri native from Lee's Summit, currently grades out as the 84th-best corner in the country.
The offensive line has been a huge focus for the Tigers in this cycle, as the Tigers have secured commitments from five linemen in total -- Michael Fairchild, Paul Adams, Kevin Pendleton, Zach Hudson and Sam Bailey. With the exception of Bailey -- currently listed at 6'5, 245 -- each player in this group weighs more than 270 pounds, with Pendleton topping them all at 310. 247Sports projects all five players as offensive tackles at this point, although they should switch positions once they get to campus.