Missouri Tigers News and Notes: Danario Alexander, Teammates at Combine

Ryan FallerAnalyst IFebruary 25, 2010

KANSAS CITY, MO - NOVEMBER 28:  Danario Alexander #81 of the Missouri Tigers runs with the ball during the game against the Kansas Jayhawks at Arrowhead Stadium on November 28, 2009 in Kansas City, Missouri. (Photo by Jamie Squire/Getty Images)
Jamie Squire/Getty Images

The NFL Combine kicked off Wednesday, and a quartet of Missouri Tigers will spend the next few days in Indianapolis in an attempt to impress NFL scouts leading up to the NFL Draft in April.

Here are a few notes on the Combine and other goings-on around Missouri athletics:

Dave Matter of the Columbia Daily Tribune has an excellent outline of each Missouri player's itinerary in Indianapolis .

Of the four, which includes Kurtis Gregory , Jared Perry , and Sean Weatherspoon , Danario Alexander is the only one expected to forgo participating in drills. As Matter noted , citing a report from Sports Illustrated last week, Alexander will need time to recover after undergoing surgery Feb. 16 on his troubled left knee to repair cartilage damage suffered during last month's Senior Bowl.

The surgery, which is now the fourth to be performed on the receiver's left knee since 2007, is also expected to keep Alexander from participating in Missouri's pro day on Mar. 4.

If there's one person who can surely sympathize with Alexander's situation, it's former teammate and current Cincinnati Bengals tight end Chase Coffman , who was unable to participate in last year's Combine because of a broken bone in his foot.

Geoff Hobson, a writer for the Bengals' official Web site, has an excellent piece that chronicles Coffman's rookie season, in which he was inactive for the first 12 games before missing the remainder of 2009 while on injured reserve following surgery to remove bone spurs from his ankle.

In hoops, the Tigers blew out Colorado , 92-63, at Mizzou Arena on Wednesday evening, but the victory may ultimately prove costly.

Junior forward Justin Safford landed oddly after converting a layup early in the first half, injuring his left knee. Safford, who is averaging 8.6 points and 4.1 rebounds a game this season, did not return and is feared to have torn at least one ligament in the knee, according to Columbia Daily Tribune writer Steve Walentik. If an MRI proves that to be the case, Safford will likely miss the remainder of the season.

With March Madness around the corner, the beginning to the MU softball team's season has been lost in the shuffle somewhat.

Currently ranked No. 6 in the nation in the USA Today/NFCA poll , the Tigers (3-2) split a two-game series with No. 2 Arizona last weekend and now head to Columbus, Ga., for the NFCA Leadoff Classic (Feb. 26-28), where they'll encounter three teams ranked nationally, including No. 4 Michigan.

Meanwhile, the baseball team also recently got its season underway. The Tigers, picked to finish seventh in the Big 12, won two of three at last weekend's Cactus Classic in Tucson, Ariz., to begin the season. MU now travels to Auburn, Ala., for the Auburn Classic , where the Tigers will face unranked opponents Florida Atlantic, Boston College, and Auburn over the weekend.