Mizzou Made Seattle Seahawks offensive lineman Justin Britt will conclude his rookie season with an appearance in Super Bowl XLIX on Sunday (5:30 p.m. on NBC).

Britt has played an instrumental in role in Seattle’s success this season, starting at right tackle in every game except in the NFC Wild Card Round, which he missed due to injury.

The Seahawks drafted Britt in the second round of the 2014 NFL Draft.

Visit MUTigers.com for more updates on #MizzouMade players in the NFL.

Mizzou Director of Athletics Mike Alden has announced he will step down effective August 31, 2015, to become an instructor in the College of Education.

“It’s hard for me to overstate how grateful I am for Mike Alden, and for all that he has done for me professionally and personally,” said Mizzou Football Head Coach Gary Pinkel. “I’ve said it before that Mike Alden is the reason I came to Mizzou. His leadership and support for our program and for this Athletic Department has been transformational.

I think back to when we brought our program here, it’s really amazing to see how much better things are across the board.  It’s tough to see him leave, but I’m very happy for Mike and Rockie for being able to take this next step in their lives.”

Alden has served as Director of Athletics at Mizzou since 1998. In his new role with the College of Education, he will work with the Positive Coaching Program and teach higher education leadership courses. As a longtime volunteer, organizer, and advisor for volunteering efforts on campus, he will also assist with the launch of the Center for Global Service Learning Leadership.

“My wife, Rockie, our son, Jake, and I have had an incredible experience at Mizzou and this is simply our next step in our journey in Columbia,” Alden said in a letter to Mizzou Nation. “We are proud of what we have accomplished over the past seventeen years, which is a lifetime for an athletics administrator. I am most proud of our tremendous coaches, staff and student-athletes and how they represent our University with academic integrity, social responsibility and competitive excellence.”

Mizzou Chancellor R. Bowen Loftin, College of Education Dean Daniel Clay, and Alden be available to speak to students, faculty, and the media at 10:30 a.m. on Friday, January 30, in the Great Room of the Reynolds Alumni Center.

“Over seventeen years of service to the University of Missouri, Mike has transformed our athletics program into one of the nation’s best, with world-class student-athletes, coaches, staff, facilities, affiliations and financial resources,” Loftin said. “He led our institution’s move to the Southeastern Conference and has been at the helm as our teams won multiple championships over the years.  Though I am saddened that Mike will no longer be a member of our leadership team and leading our Department of Athletics, I am truly happy for him and Rockie as he embarks on a new challenge here at Mizzou.  Mike will always be a part of our family. We have already begun a national search for Mike’s successor and I am confident we will find a tremendous leader to carry us forward.”

2015 Mizzou Made Signing Day Show will take place on Wednesday, February 4 at 8 a.m. CT on Mizzou Network, giving fans a chance to see and learn about the newest members of the Mizzou Football Family. The show is the first fans can hear about the signees from the coaching staff. Highlights, updates on the team, and interviews with current players will also be a part of the show.

Following the Signing Day Show, the National Signing Day Recruiting Reception will be held on Wednesday, February 4 at the Columns Club at The ZOU. Doors open at 5:15 p.m. and the reception will begin at 5:30 p.m.

Be sure to follow Mizzou Football on Twitter, Instagram, and Facebook to ask questions about the latest signing class during the show.

“Wanting to be someone isn’t enough, dreaming about it isn’t enough, thinking about it isn’t enough. You’ve got to study for it, work for it, fight for it with all your heart and soul because nobody is going to hand it to you.” –Colin Powell

When you become part of the Mizzou Football Family, you commit to a lifestyle, not a part-time job. The Mizzou Football mentality depends on investment in leadership, time, relationship, and growth. When you take the time to invest in something worthwhile, the outcome is extraordinary.

In the wise words of Colin Powell, “Wanting to be someone isn’t enough, dreaming about it isn’t enough, thinking about it isn’t enough. You’ve got to study for it, work for it, fight for it with all your heart and soul because nobody is going to hand it to you.” These words are the heart and soul of the Mizzou Football Family, as well. In order to achieve success and unity, total investment is key.

You must invest to be a member of the Mizzou Football Family. Whether it’s athletically, mentally, or emotionally, every player is expected to put the maximum time and effort into the program.

To show investment in the program, Mizzou Football requires four key things from its players:

  1. Great effort
  2. Finish drills
  3. Run from drill to drill
  4. Run on and off the field

Just like any well-run business or organization, leaders are held to a high standard, just like players. Mizzou Football requires coaches to invest in every area of a player’s life, not just on the field. Relationships begin with trust, so in order for a coach to form a bond with his players, he must invest in the whole person—not just his athletic skills. Coaches in the Mizzou Football Family are required to take a pro-active approach to all areas of their player’s life—academic, athletic and social well being.

In order to show investment in the program, Mizzou Football coaches are expected to uphold the following principles:

  1. Always have the player’s safety in mind.
  2. Be fair. Treat players how they deserve to be treated.
  3. Have the players at your position, play to/beyond their ability level on a consistent basis.
  4. Develop the player’s fundamentals.
  5. Develop and implement a plan to put players in a position to be successful.

If you want to win, you must be committed to being a great player, and you must be accountable to your teammates. All great organizations are marked by desire to achieve, and leaders must recognize that desire. When coaches invest in athletes, athletes invest in the program.

The investment mentality that drives Mizzou Football sets the program apart. It is not your decision as a player or coach to go hard—that’s the only way Mizzou Football operates.

While running back Marcus Murphy and defensive end Markus Golden are used to playing on the same team, the 2015 Reese’s Senior Bowl saw them on opposing teams.

Murphy represented Mizzou on the North team, while Golden played for the South. The Senior Bowl, played on January 24 in Mobile, Alabama, was a chance for the top seniors in college football to play in an all-star game and raise their stock for the upcoming NFL Draft. Each team is headed up by an NFL coach, and this year’s teams were led by Ken Whisenhunt of the Tennessee Titans (North team) and Gus Bradley of the Jacksonville Jaguars (South team).

The North team came out on top in a 34-13 win. Murphy recorded two kick returns for 60 yards, with his longest at 36 yards, and a punt return for 10 yards. Golden recorded a solo tackle for a loss of four yards.

Both players were crucial to Mizzou Football’s success this season. Murphy was named SEC Special Teams Player of the Year, and he was the only player in the FBS to score a touchdown in all four all-purpose categories this season: rushing (4 TDs), kickoff return (2), receiving (1), and punt return (1). He led the SEC in kickoff return average (among players with at least 15 attempts) with a 29.9-yard average, and his 82-yard punt return for a touchdown against Florida was the longest in the SEC this season. Murphy led the team in all-purpose yards with 1,921, and he is Mizzou’s all-time leader in special teams touchdowns with 7 return scores.

Golden was a force to be reckoned with at defensive end, recording 78 tackles, 20 tackles for loss, and 10 sacks over the course of the season His 10 tackles and career-high 4 tackles for loss earned him MVP honors in Mizzou’s 33-20 win over Minnesota in the Buffalo Wild Wings Citrus Bowl. Golden’s relentless pursuit on the D-line led to 95 yards lost in tackles and 66 yards lost in sacks.

With both players NFL hopefuls, Mizzou hopes to continue its tradition of the pipeline to the pros. Since 2009, Mizzou is in the top five of first-round draft picks and top five in wins among Power Five schools. Mizzou Football has also led the conference in Academic Progress Rate for three straight years, representing Head Coach Gary Pinkel and his staff’s Mizzou Made total development program. Not only do players come out of the Mizzou Football program better prepared for the NFL, but also better prepared for life.

The defending SEC East Champions and Citrus Bowl Champions will continue to work and improve this off-season. Follow Mizzou Football on Twitter, Instagram, and Facebook for information regarding Mizzou Football.

Mizzou Made

For former placekicker Jeff Wolfert, football was not part of the plan when he came to Mizzou in 2004.

Wolfert originally attended Mizzou on a swim and dive scholarship, but he had a burning desire to play football. When Wolfert wasn’t in the pool, he was training and kicking, hoping that a collegiate football career would become a reality. In his second year at Mizzou, Wolfert was able to walk onto the team

As a walk-on kicker with little experience, Wolfert astounded the masses when he emerged as one of the nation’s top kickers in the 2006 season. He was a starter for three years, and by the end of his college career, was named the NCAA’s Most Accurate Kicker of all-time.

“Just the coaches calling your number gives you enough support and confidence to go out and make the kick,” Wolfert said. “You earn that trust and you earn those opportunities just by how you’re performing. My experience at Mizzou was incredible, an experience I could never, ever have dreamed of.”

The NFL & KCKicking

After college, Wolfert trained as a free agent. He joined the United Football League, and then accepted an offer to play for the Cleveland Browns. He played in multiple preseason games and
scored a game-winning 45-yard field goal against Detroit.

2012-08-10_Wolfert_Jeff028Wolfert worked on the side by coaching young athletes, and he soon discovered a passion for coaching.

“I found that as I was still pursuing that NFL dream, coaching helped me understand kicking better and actually helped me improve as an athlete, as well,” Wolfert said.

As his NFL pursuit came to a close, his coaching career hit an all-time high. Wolfert started a kicking and punting instructional company in Kansas City called KCKicking. The company offers camps, showcases, and lessons for kickers and punters.

“We specialize in helping high school kickers and punters make the transition to college football,” Wolfert said. “In the past three years, I’ve had 75 kids commit to college programs. We’re growing and working with more kids each year.”

Wolfert’s Mizzou history has made an impact on KCKicking. His business ventures are modeled after several aspects of the Mizzou Football program.

“Mizzou Football was always very organized,” Wolfert said. “Everything I do has to be professional and top of the line. Seeing the Mizzou Football program and the success it’s had, I try to convert that over to my business.”

Wolfert’s goal for his camps is to give it an edge that other camps may not offer.

“What I offer at my camps is that I value individualized instruction. I don’t have a cookie-cutter approach to how you must kick and punt,” Wolfert said. “I tailor the instruction to the skills of the athlete I’m working with and also incorporate a lot of video review.”

KCK-69Along with personal training and camps, Wolfert finds a way to make it back to his alma mater. He helps with Mizzou Football camps every year.

“I know all the guys on the roster,” Wolfert said. “We all respect each other and we’ve all been in the same shoes, so we use each other as a resource.”

Wolfert has called upon his Mizzou Football Family to help coach at his camps, specifically Trey Barrow, Jake Harry, Andrew Baggett and Christian Brinser.

“We all stay in touch anyways, so I try to get them involved with KCKicking as much as I can,” Wolfert said.

As the company continues to grow, Wolfert has plans to expand camp locations each year and hopes that his company will offer national camps in the future.

“Anything I offer is going to be professional, it is going to be well-run, and it is going to be a quality service.” Wolfert said.

The Mizzou Football Family works tirelessly to land the top recruits in the nation from all over the United States. The state of Texas has been very good to the Tigers and has produced some standout players for Mizzou in recent years.

They say everything is bigger in Texas, and the number of current or former Tigers who hail from the Lone Star state is no exception. There are 22 players on the Mizzou roster from Texas, including SEC Special Teams Player of the Year Marcus Murphy, safety Braylon Webb, who led the team with four interceptions this season, and wide receiver Bud Sasser, who led the team with 12 touchdowns this season.

“I have a lot of pride in representing my city and my state and the people that enjoyed watching me from Texas,” Sasser said. “It was important to prove to a new crowd in Missouri that you can be one of the best.”

Former Tigers from Texas include first-round pick and current Jacksonville Jaguars defensive lineman Ziggy Hood, first-round pick and current Atlanta Falcons linebacker Sean Weatherspoon, and Kansas City Chiefs quarterback Chase Daniel.

To continue successful recruiting from Texas, former Mizzou center and current offensive line coach A.J. Ricker focuses heavily on recruiting from his home state. Ricker was born in Windsor, Missouri, and graduated from high school in Klein, Texas. He started 47 consecutive games for Mizzou from 2000-2003. This established a record at the time for any position, and he now stands No. 5 all-time for any position and No. 2 for centers. He also was a two-time team captain and was first-team All-Big 12 center in 2003.

After graduating from Mizzou in 2004 with a degree in agriculture, Ricker signed a free agent contract with the Chicago Bears. He also played for the Arena Football League’s Tampa Bay Storm. After retiring from playing, Ricker coached at various college football programs for eight years, including Illinois, where he was an offensive line coach, before coming to Mizzou. Coach Ricker’s knowledge of the area helps Mizzou lock down talented prospective student-athletes.

These current and former Mizzou Tigers may have been Texas born, but most importantly, they are Mizzou Made. The defending Buffalo Wild Wings Citrus Bowl Champions will continue their recruiting success this year with athletes not only from Texas, but all over the U.S. Be sure to follow Mizzou Football on Twitter, Instagram, and Facebook for more news about Mizzou Football in the offseason.

“The vision of a champion is bent over, drenched in sweat and at the point of exhaustion,
when nobody else is looking.” 
–Anson Dorrance

A champion is special. He is elevated on his team, but for the right reasons. Although champions are rare, they are distinct. Once you have spent time with your team and pay attention to your fellow athletes are are as leaders, you will find that they are one of two types: A want-to-be or a champion.

Here are the qualities of both:

The Psychological Profile of a Want-To-Be: 

  • No Drive. A Want-To-Be can’t see the benefits in hard, grueling practices. He can’t push through challenges and does not care if he wins or loses.
  • Know-It-All. He fails to listen to authority and cannot accept changes and new ideas. He tends to make excuses.
  • He is racked with self-doubt and cannot place enough confidence in himself to complete a task. He does not know how to compete because he is too hard on himself.
  • Watcher. If there is an accident or mistake, he won’t take ownership. He doesn’t want a part in anything monumental, because he is scared of making a mistake.
  • Corner Cutter. He avoids the tough parts of practices. He has an excuse for every corner he cuts, and he finds his comfort more important than future reward from hard work.
  • There is always an aching muscle or pain that prevents him from putting in the hard work that the rest of the team endures. Instead of working through pain, he wallows in it.
  • He is easily distracted from the job, but claims he is focused and prepared. When true competition comes his way, he cannot compete at full force.
  • He cannot stick it out till the finish line. He is easily discouraged and does not have a positive mindset. He is unreliable because although he starts many jobs, he finishes few.

A champion is the polar opposite of a want-to-be, and he demonstrates his strengths through example and work ethic.

The Psychological Profile of a Champion

  • A champion sets the bar high each day. He hates losing and will sacrifice comfort and free time to reach a goal.
  • He is easy to coach and finds instruction helpful and fulfilling.
  • He is the “first place belongs to me” type. He does not take no for an answer, but instead fights until the word “no” becomes a “yes.”
  • He shows the way and sets a good example. He does not ask for power, but graciously leads through his example and support to others on his team.
  • Take-Charge Guy. He will take over when things go wrong. He is not afraid to deal with challenges and will own up to mistakes and not flee from issues.
  • Hard worker. He is one of the first people at practice and one of the last to leave. He does not cut corners and puts in the work to compete at the highest level possible.
  • Mental toughness. He never gives in, even when it’s tempting. He can focus in the right moments and has no excuses for pain or discomfort.
  • Psychological endurance. He will stick with a job until the end. He knows his ability and strength and will only commit to something if he knows he can finish it.


A champion is rare but extremely valuable to a team unit. In the words of Anson Dorrance, “The vision of a champion is bent over, drenched in sweat and at the point of exhaustion, when nobody else is looking.” Any player can be drenched in sweat and exhausted, but a champion is someone who can do it without complaining. A champion does not make his sufferings known. He endures them, working towards the end goal of team unity and growth.


When you look at your teammates and colleagues, you will be able to discern who is a want-to-be and who is a champion through their actions and their attitudes. There is no such thing as perfect, but there is always room for improvement. When you grasp the humble character of a champion, that’s when you can begin leading your team.

Mizzou Made Seattle Seahawks offensive lineman Justin Britt will make his 17th straight start on Sunday, January 18, when the Seahawks meet the Packers in the NFC Championship game at 2:05CT on FOX.

Britt’s consistent play at right tackle has boosted the 13-4 Seahawks all season long. Seattle has won seven straight with Britt on the O-line, and he and his fellow lineman gave quarterback Russell Wilson the protection to pass for 268 yards in last week’s 31-17 win over the Carolina Panthers.

The Seahawks drafted Britt in the second round of the 2014 NFL Draft.

Visit MUTigers.com for more updates on #MizzouMade players in the NFL.