By: Ben Krakow
The Missouri Football team picked up their 1st SEC win of the season with a 26-17 victory over Vanderbilt on Saturday afternoon. The win also snapped a 5 game overall losing streak along with an 11 game SEC losing streak that dated back to last season. Mizzou freshman running back Damarea Crockett had 20 carries for 154 yards and a touchdown. Quarterback Drew Lock completed 22 of 37 passes with for 294 yards and 2 touchdowns. Wide Reciever J’Mon Moore had 8 catches for 138 yards and 2 touchdowns. Moore had the 10th 100-yard game by a Mizzou wide receiver this season. That is the most of any team in college football this season.
Crockett started the scoring with a 4-yard touchdown run. Then, cornerback Aarion Penton had a 19-yard interception return for a touchdown. Just a short time after, Lock connected with Moore on an 82-yard touchdown pass on the first play of the drive. Vanderbilt then scored 17 unanswered points to cut the Mizzou lead to 19-17. Moore then caught a 4-yard touchdown pass early in the 4th quarter to give Mizzou a comfortable lead.
Missouri Head Coach Barry Odom said after the game that he was very pleased with his team’s performance. The win was also Odom’s first SEC win as a head coach.
“We needed that on a number of different levels,” Odom said.
The kicking game was a bit of an adventure for the Tigers as freshman kicker Tucker McCann continued to struggle. McCann missed two extra points and two field goals. He missed a 55-yard field goal at the end of the first half that was nearly returned for a touchdown by Vanderbilt. Mizzou tight end Jason Reese made a touchdown saving tackle to end the half. McCann then went onto miss a 21-yard field goal early in the 3rd quarter. Lock said after the game that he thought in the future that they would try to get a first down on 4th down if put in a similar situation.
“I think that next time we get in the red zone, we will go for it on 4th down,” Lock said.
Walk-on transfer kicker Ben Tesson made the final extra point in his first game action as a Tiger. Many wondered where he came from and that included Odom.
“He’s the guy that made the extra point, right?” Odom quipped after the game.
Crockett continues to excel and is now the clear lead running back in the Mizzou offense. He is within reach of 1,000 rushing yards in his true freshman season. Crockett said postgame that he has gotten some inspiration from a certain NFL running back.
“I was watching some Le’Veon Bell highlights before the game,” Crockett admitted.
On the injury front, Mizzou lost a couple of players during the game. Center Samson Bailey re-injured his right ankle that has been bothering him for most of the season. Alec Abeln, who has started a few games at guard this season, replaced Bailey. Long snapper Jake Hurrell left after suffering a possible concussion while covering a return. Walk-on linebacker Jacob Trump (no relation to the President-elect) took over for Hurrell. Trump is Odom’s wife’s nephew.
Missouri (3-7, 1-5 in the SEC) will travel to Knoxville, Tennessee next week to take on the Tennessee Volunteers. Game time is set for 2:30 and will be televised nationally on CBS.
(Featured Image: Ben Krakow)