Quick Cotton Bowl thoughts...

Blow out Arkansas.  Check.
Watch Illinois get crushed by USC.  Check.
Watch Kansas get crushed by Virginia Tech.  All that's left.

Quick thoughts...

QB

Worst game I've seen from Chase since last year's Nebraska game.  He didn't have to make plays, and he sure wasn't done any favors by his receivers (i.e. Will Franklin), but...we scored 38 points, set a Cotton Bowl offensive record, and won going away, so...yeah, won't complain too much.  And the fact that he was carrying Temple off the field after the 4th TD tells you everything you need to know about Chase Daniel.

RB

Not sure I know of anything to say that hasn't already been said elsewhere.  If Tony Temple can't get granted a whole fifth year, can we at least see if he can be granted one more game--next year's bowl?

Click 'Full Story' for more.

WR/TE

Maclin was shadowed by about 4 guys all day, so he didn't have many opportunities, but that opened the door for Will Franklin, who had a nice last game with 77 receiving yards...only, it should have been about 177.  I won't say drops killed us because we won by 30, but...good lord, without the drops, we might have won by 45.  Martin Rucker had a nice final game, carrying the load early until Temple got going.

OL

Wasn't all that impressed with the pass-blocking, as Arkansas should have never gotten pressure on Chase while only rushing 2-3 guys, but when your RB sets a Cotton Bowl rushing record (and has the second-highest rushing total in any bowl game ever), your OL was pretty stinking good.

DL

Arkansas' OL came into the game having earned all sorts of All-American and All-SEC honors, and we held them to 150(ish) rushing yards and were in Casey Dick's face all game.  Aside from basically one drive against OU and one James Johnson run against K-State, this DL was magnificent for a good majority of this year.  We'll miss Lorenzo Williams, but Charles Gaines is ready for primetime if he can get a 5th year of eligibility.  And wow, did Stryker Sulak make a couple of major-league athletic plays today.

LB

Brock Christopher was making tackles and breaking up passes all over the place, while Sean Weatherspoon was out to prove that the defense's attitude will not change next year when we lose Lorenzo Williams and the presence of Pig Brown.  We needed a big game from the LB's, and we got a ha-yuge one.

DB

It was nice knowing you, William Moore.  I hope you come back next season--you'll be a freaking All-American--but you might have just upped your draft stock a little too much.

Special Teams

Jeff Wolfert has spoiled me at this point.  Not only does he make every kick, but he splits the uprights every time.  I'm going to have very high expectations for whoever replaces him in 2009.  And I want to take the time to applaud Adam Crossett for an entertaining, be it up-and-down, career at Mizzou.  His punting was decent today, and his kickoffs were progressively better, but I'll always like him due to the 2005 game-winner against Iowa State (when he sprinted to the 25-yard line as tribute to AO) and his 50-yard bomb against South Carolina that same year.  If he doesn't make those two kicks, we might not be where we are right now.  And where are we?  On the cusp of a Top 5 finish in 2007 and a Top 5-8 start in 2008.

Coaching

Let me take one more second to gloat in the faces of everybody who wanted Pinkel fired and replaced by Gary Barnett in 2004-5.  Ha.  I was right, and you were wrong.  There, I feel better.  We have a coach with heart, brains, loyalty, and morals.  Can't ask for anything more than that.

More to come as I break down the box score in a couple days.  For now I'm going to sit back, drink some more Shiner Bock (when in Rome...), bask in the glory of a 12-win season, and prepare to drive back to MO tomorrow.

M-I-Z...!

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