It was a November day in Manhattan where Missouri didn't dominate, but Missouri did something it hadn't done since 1989 - beat KSU at its own place. The Tigers did what they had to, and avoided the trap game while escaping Manhattan relatively injury free with a 49-32 win over Kansas State.
So, like a 99-yard kickoff return, off we run with this week's edition of Good, Bad, and Indifferent.
Keep runnin' to Kansas City, J-Mac... (AP Photo)
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- Jeremy F. Maclin: I don't know if "F" is truly his middle initial, but it's the first letter of the word I usually put between his first and last name, that's for sure. Maclin had 252 total yards, 99 of them on a HUGE kickoff return for touchdown after KSU elected to kick a short FG, in the process setting the NCAA record for total yardage by a freshman in a season.
- Responses: Mizzou's offense came up big, especially in the second half, anytime the Tigers' backs were against the wall. The consecutive touchdown drives in the third quarter helped put the game away, with the drives spanning about 180 combined yards in three minutes of possession.
- Chase Daniel: Didn't have big time numbers, but kept his team focused and his Heisman campaign (and knee ligaments) intact.
- Sean Weatherspoon/William Moore: Once again, Spoon and Willy Mo were the best Mizzou defenders on the field, combining for 20 tackles, 3 sacks, a forced fumble, and an interception. And the better news? Neither of them are seniors.
- Carl Gettis: The stats weren't great, but teams are starting to shy away from Gettis' side of the field. He is as sure of a tackler as I've seen at the corner position, and what he's done in his freshman year has been nothing short of outstanding. Plus, he had an interception robbed from him by the men in stripes.
- Tony Temple: The stats don't look bad (16 carries, 75 yards, 2 TD), but outside of a few big gains, Temple continued to dance around holes and be indecisive out of the backfield. Five of his carries resulted in either a loss or no gain. I'm reaching the point where I think Jackson should get the majority of the carries.
- Run defense: The strong pursuit and great linebacker play that was this defense's trademark earlier in conference play seemed to take a day off in the run game. K-State nearly averaged 5 yards a carry, and, of it were not for Josh Freeman's -30 yards, the Wildcats would have rushed for 180 yards, 172 from James Johnson.
- Kickoffs: Wolfert was suspect, struggling to reach the 10-yard line with his kicks on most occasions. Crossett was brought in to try to upgrade the kicks and he promptly put one out of bounds for an illegal procedure.
- Punting: Once again, the punting game looks terrible but Mizzou can get away with it. Poor long-snapping continues to cost the unit, and Crossett is prone to the random shank. But how often can Missouri afford to give up a blocked punt every game? It almost killed them against Illinois, and KU and (possibly) OU will not come with that much room for error.
- Darnell Terrell: Big picture, Terrell's quietly had a very solid season, especially in run support on options and sweeps. Terrell had 8 tackles but often seemed lost in coverage today, as Mizzou seemed content to let Jordy Nelson have his yards underneath.
- Tight ends: I know Rucker had two touchdowns, but doesn't it seem like he and Coffman were extremely quiet? Usually those guys move the chains 7 or 8 times a game, but either KSU gameplanned like hell against these two or the Tigers weren't able to get them open in space.
- Offensive Line: The Tigers O-Line did a pretty good job picking up the K-State blitzes and stunts. Daniel got drilled on the blind side on a couple of possessions, but overall, the unit was solid. I think the two sacks surrendered were more of a function of Daniel holding the ball too long.
- Time of Possession: Not that it really matters with this squad, but I did find it amusing that the TOP was tied at exactly 30:00.