Mizzou redshirt senior defensive end Markus Golden, from St. Louis, Mo., has been named to the 20th annual Chuck Bednarik Award watch list. The Bednarik Award is given to the top defensive player in college football.
Golden, when you go by the numbers, was actually Mizzou’s top producing defensive ends when it came to tackles. He led all Mizzou ends with 55 tackles plus added 13 TFLs and 6.5 sacks, despite playing just 40% of the snaps behind starters Kony Ealy and Michael Sam. One of Golden’s biggest plays of last season came when he returned an interception 70 yards against Toledo in September, which put the game out of reach in the third quarter.
Golden will line up on one side of the defensive line opposite Shane Ray. In the Spring Game, Golden finished the game with one sack, which came after he stuffed a run for a loss. Two plays later he dropped quarterback Corbin Berkstresser forcing a punt. Golden and Ray have big shoes to fill, but head coach Gary Pinkel was impressed with Golden after the scrimmage.
“Great progress, he has great strength. He and Shane Ray are both high level guys,” said Pinkel.