As we put a wrap on the roller coaster ride of a rebuilding season in 2009, I've decided to ask for the community's help in fashioning the 2009 Mizzou All-Season Team. Just like I did in 2007 before the Cotton Bowl, putting together the All-Season Team will help recognize the top performances of the season at each position this past year.
Today, we look at Derrick Washington's spot at running back. Nominees after the jump.
NOMINEES (in chronological order):
- Derrick Washington vs. Bowling Green: The story of the Bowling Green game was the struggles of Blaine Gabbert in the first half and Gabbert's redemption in the second half. But it's easy to forget just how solid Washington was in the midst of Mizzou's comeback. With the Falcons so focused on dropping as many men into coverage as possible to confuse Gabbert, the onus was put on Washington to drag the Missouri offense along. And he might have come up with one of the biggest moments of the non-conference season in the third quarter, churning out an 18-yard gain on 3rd and 10 with Missouri trailing 20-6 and less than 20 minutes left to play. One play later, Gabbert found Perry in the Northwest corner endzone to pull Mizzou closer, and it was eventually D-Wash's one-yard plunge in the fourth that won Mizzou the game.
THE LINE: 23 carries, 120 yards, 5.2 YPC, 1 TD
- Derrick Washington vs. Colorado: Looking back, the immediate moments that spring to mind from the Colorado game are what? Probably Danario's long TD, Jacquies Smith's fake field goal TD, Spoon's fourth down stop, and the Gabbert Pick-6 that pulled the game closer in the second half. But Washington played a far larger role than many seem to remember. Washington got the ball five times for 30 yards on the opening drive (which he capped with a 1-yard touchdown run), pulling CU defenders closer to the line on ensuing possessions. Maybe not his best day, but it was certainly an important one.
THE LINE: 22 carries, 99 yards, 4.5 YPC, 1 TD
- Derrick Washington vs. Kansas State: Danario Alexander was the star of the show in Manhattan, but it was D-Wash that put the game away in the fourth quarter. Washington saw nine of his 14 carries in the fourth quarter for 49 yards and two touchdowns in pushing a 12-point Missouri lead into a 26-point Missouri win.
THE LINE: 13 carries, 68 yards, 5.2 YPC, 2 TD
- Derrick Washington vs. Kansas: Derrick Washington may have had bigger games in his career (the 2008 season opener against Illinois immediately comes to mind), but I'm not sure he's ever had a bigger run than the one he had in the fourth quarter against Kansas in 2009. With 1:02 remaining and Mizzou trailing 39-38, Washington took a handoff on a counter play to the left of Gabbert on 3rd and 2 from the Kansas 32. Washington ran into traffic two yards downfield, but shook off contact and followed a wall of blockers while cutting back to the middle of the field. The scamper down to the five yard line set up Grant Ressel's eventual game winner. And this all says nothing of how Washington's solid first half helped keep Missouri in the game.
THE LINE: 15 carries, 111 yards, 7.4 YPC, 2 TD
2009 Missouri Tigers All-Season Team
- Quarterback: Blaine Gabbert vs. Illinois
- Running Back: Vote now!