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Markus Golden, Shane Ray piling up sacks for Missouri Tigers

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Jasen Vinlove-USA TODAY Sports
Markus Golden is in line to become Missouri's next great defensive end.

Replacing 2014 NFL Draft picks Kony Ealy and Michael Sam as pass rushers is serious business to Markus Golden and Shane Ray, the Tigers' next pair of pass-rushing pro prospects.

On Saturday, they played like it.

Golden had a sack for a loss of 17 yards against Toledo on Saturday and Ray notched two sacks of his own for 14 more yards in losses as Missouri handled the Rockets, 49-24. That's even better than last week, when the duo combined for 2.5 sacks in a 38-18 win over South Dakota State.

Ealy, a second-round pick of the Carolina Panthers, and Sam, a seventh-round pick of the St. Louis Rams who is now with the Dallas Cowboys, combined for 21 sacks last season as Missouri won the SEC East in just its second year in the league. Golden and Ray saw extensive playing time last season in relief of Ealy and Sam, and combined for another 11 sacks.

With a bit more size than Ray, Golden (6-foot-3, 260 pounds) is the better NFL prospect of the two. And unlike a lot of pro prospects, Golden won't have to make a decision about whether to turn pro early -- he's a fifth-year senior.

Follow Chase Goodbread on Twitter @ChaseGoodbread.

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