(Photo Credit: Clayton Hotze- MUTIGERS.com)
Nothing went right Saturday for the Missouri Tigers as they fell to the Indiana Hoosiers 31-27. The Tigers struggled on both sides of the ball failing to get anything going against a sub par Hoosier defense. Additionally the Missouri defense failed to advance its streak of 48 straight games with a turnover as Indiana protected the ball well throughout the contest.
The run stop, which has been an issue all season long for the Tigers defensive line proved true once more as Tevin Coleman put the Hoosiers on the board first with a one yard run giving Indiana the 7-0 lead. Coleman rushed for 132-yards on 19 carries and a touchdown.
Maty Mauk and the Missouri offense responded on the next drive as Mauk found wide out Jimmie Hunt for a 45-yard score, knotting the game up at 7-7. Mauk threw for 326 yards and two touchdowns on the day. Indiana kept the ball on the ground on the ensuing drive as D’Angelo Roberts capitalized on a one yard run giving the lead back to Indiana at 14-7.
After a big stop by the defense Mauk connected with Bud Sasser before Russell Hansbrough raced 68-yards down the field and into the end zone to tie the game back up at 14-14. Then after an Indiana three and out the Tigers took their first lead of the game when Andrew Baggett connected on a 27-yard feild goal giving Missouri a 17-14 edge. Indiana’s Aaron Del Grasso tied it up 17-17 with a 23-yard field just before halftime.
Mauk’s first pass to start off the third quarter was picked off by Mark Murphy, but luckily for the Tigers Del Grasso failed to convert on a 41-yard field goal attempt. Missouri was unable to get anything going offensively throughout the third quarter as the offensive line struggled to keep pressure off Mauk in the pocket.
After a stalled Missouri drive Indiana regained the lead as Nate Sudfeld hit J-Shun Harris on a 33-yard pass to put the Hoosiers back up 24-17. But Mauk and the Tigers responded again on their next drive as he found Sean Culkin in the end zone for a one yard score tying things up at 24-24. The touchdown was Culkin’s first on the season.
With less than three minutes to play Baggett connected on a 40-yard field goal to give Missouri the lead back at 27-24. The Tiger defense came out strong on the next drive and appeared to shut down the Hoosiers on fourth down, but a defensive pass interference penalty gave Indiana a new set of downs. The Hoosiers took advantage as Allen trotted in for his second touchdown of the game giving Indiana the 31-27 advantage.
The Tigers had one last opportunity to convert, but could not get it done as Indiana upset Missouri 31-27. The Tigers fall to 3-1 on the season, while Indiana improves to 2-1.
The Tigers failed to take care of business in what should have been an easy win at home. The sloppy play by Missouri likely cost them of any fairytale shot at making the BCS playoff, but they still have a lot to play for. The Tigers next three games kick off SEC action starting next week when they travel to South Carolina to take on the Gamecocks. The Tigers lost to the Gamecocks a season ago in a shocking finish with Baggett missing a field goal in overtime.
Heading into SEC action Missouri has a lot of things it needs to work on. The offensive line banged up by the loss of left guard Anthony Gatti has to do a better job of protecting Mauk in the pocket and giving him time to throw the ball. Center Evan Boehm, who looked erratic with the snaps, has to perform better as well.
On the defensive side the defensive line needs to do a better job of stopping the run to force quarterbacks to throw the ball more. The loss of Marcus Golden this past weekend is no excuse for the line to give up so many yards on the ground. Additionally, the defensive backs have to do a better job of taking away the easy screenplays underneath.
Overall it was not a good game at all by the Missouri Tigers football team this past weekend. Those penalties are going to cost you every time and you can’t be committing penalties if you want to have a chance in the SEC games. I’m sure it will be a long week of practice; we’ll just have to wait and see next Saturday if they can come back from this disappointing loss.
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