Cody Schrader, the 5-9, 220 pound running back from St. Louis, MO started his first game as a Missouri Tiger on Thursday against the Louisiana Tech Bulldogs. Cody did not disappoint, rushing 17 times for 70 yards and a touchdown. An unlikely starter at the end of he 2021 season. However unlikely, Cody has paid his dues and certainly deserves this opportunity.
The accolades are endless for Cody Schrader. He was the 2021 Co-Great Lakes Valley Conference Offensive Player of the Year. His most recent trophy, added to the pile of hardware. Individual accolades are not new for Cody Schrader. What is new is the spotlight, which Cody found himself under on Thursday night as the starting Running back for the Missouri Tigers. Despite being the best player in NCAA College Football’s Division II in 2021, few people know who Cody Schrader is.
"“The fans are going to know about Cody Schrader on Thursday night. There’s no doubt in my mind about that.” – Head Coach, Eli Drinkwitz"
Missouri Head Coach, Eli Drinkwitz had been hinting at Schrader as the starter for weeks. Much like his Quarterback situation, Coach Drinkwitz has four very capable running backs. So, when the depth chart was released, it was not all that surprising to see Elijah Young as the 1, and not Schrader. Ultimately, depth charts are meaningless. Many will tell you they are better as diversions for opposing coaches if anything. Internally the team knows what direction they want to go and will make in-game adjustments as needed.
Cody Schrader looked good on his first few carries, so they kept feeding him. Again, Coach was determined to have Cody heavily involved in the offensive attack. He has been high on Cody since his arrival.
"“He’s been the most consistent running back in camp. You can tell his playing experience shines through.” – Head Coach, Eli Drinkwitz"
What does Drinkwitz mean by experience? The Truman State transfer has been at this for a long time. While this may be his biggest stage to date, Cody Schrader has been punishing defenses for years. In high school, at Lutheran South in St. Louis, MO, Schrader rushed the ball 834 times for an insane 6,759 yards. He caught 53 passes for 659 yards, and even returned 3 kickoffs and 1 punt for TDs. Cody finished his high school career with an incredible 111 touchdowns, which even included 3 passing touchdowns.
At Truman State, he was an All-GLVC first team selection racking up 2,288 total yards on 300 carries and 22 receptions. Schrader finished the 2021 campaign with 25 touchdowns, and the Co-GLVC Offensive Player Of the Year award. Needless to say he is experienced and very effective when on the field. It is not hard to see why Coach Drinkwitz and the Missouri Tigers are excited about Cody Schrader. The St. Louis native living his dream, and playing for the state’s home team under the brightest lights.
Like all schools, the Kansas State Wildcats have alternated pieces with some graduates and transfers, so the Tigers are facing a different K-State defense. Since it is difficult to measure unknown recruits, we default to last year’s production, and the team’s 2022 strength of schedule to evaluate most likely (season) result. The Wildcats allowed 129 rushing yards per game in 2021, ranking fifth in the Big 12. The South Dakota Coyotes, an underwhelming opponent – rushed for 145 yards in the Wildcats’ home opener. This is a good sign for the Tigers, and Cody Schrader, as he figures to handle a large workload next Saturday in Manhattan, KS.
Mizzou has a tough test ahead. The team seems ready for this big, early-season matchup. Coach Drinkwitz knows a steady hand is necessary on the road in a hostile environment. The experienced Cody Schrader may be just the man to help lead this Tigers fan to a victory, and take some pressure off Quarterback, Brady Cook.