In their third game of the season, the Missouri Tigers picked up win number one on the year. This also marked the first win under Eli Drinkwitz as head coach.
Despite having a handful of starters out due to covid, Missouri found the will to win and rally against the defending national champions, the LSU Tigers.
On Mizzou’s opening drive of the day, the Tigers quickly went 75 yards down the field in just 4 plays. A 48-yard touchdown pass from Connor Bazelak to Tauskie Dove gave Mizzou a 7-0 lead early, their first lead of the season.
LSU responded with a decent series of their own. Similar to weeks prior, Mizzou’s defense struggled to get off the field on fourth down. A successful fourth and short for LSU resulted in a touchdown. QB Myles Brennan connected with WR Devonta Lee.
With just over eight minutes to go in the first, the Tigers were tied at 7.
A 39-yard kickoff return by Tyler Badie gave Mizzou an ideal starting position to begin their second drive, however the decision to attempt a fake punt resulted in a loss on downs, giving LSU the ball in Mizzou territory.
Brennan and LSU’s offense took full advantage of their prime field position. That drive ultimately resulted in another touchdown pass from QB Myles Brennan.
Mizzou’s ensuing drive consisted of a series of short passes and pitches. The Tigers’ offense generated a significant amount of yards in the first quarter against LSU in comparison to weeks prior. Tyler Badie topped off the drive with an impressive 29-yard dash to the end zone tying the game at 14 with under a minute to go in the first quarter.
A nice play to breakup a pass on third and two by Martez Manuel helped Mizzou’s defense get off the field, but a muffed punt recovered by LSU would give LSU possession on Mizzou’s 25 yard line. That’s Mizzou’s second muffed punt of the season.
Brennan tallied his third touchdown pass of the half on the very next play. LSU retook the lead, 21-14 just as the second quarter got started. What a huge turn of events.
LSU kept things rolling defensively as well. A sack fumble recovery again gave LSU the ball past the 40 in Mizzou territory. A nice stand by Mizzou, however resulted in LSU settling for a field goal, giving them a 10 point lead.
Missouri responded with a spectacular drive of their own. 9 plays for 75 yards ended up in a touchdown. The pitch to Jalen Knox went 16 yards to the house. Through about a quarter and a half, the Tiger showdown was a shootout. 24-21 LSU.
A three-and-out on offense for LSU helped get Mizzou’s defense another deserved break. Mizzou then proceeded to put together another nice drive but had to settle for a field goal attempt. Harrison Mevis remained perfect on the year after nailing a 51 yard field goal. That was the longest field goal by any freshman in Mizzou history by the way.
Heading into halftime, the Tigers were deadlocked at 24. Mizzou had the momentum.
To begin the second half, LSU picked up a quick 24 yards on the ground. For reference, they only had 1 rushing yard the entire first half. Despite the great pickup, LSU failed to convert on the following set of downs, and brought out their punt team.
None of Mizzou’s hard work on defense mattered though after Larry Rountree III fumbled the ball on the very first play of Mizzou’s drive. LSU scored a rushing touchdown two plays later. Tyrion Davis-Price picked up the LSU score, giving LSU the lead back. 31-24.
To make up for the fumble on their own goal line goal line, Mizzou commanded their way down the field in lighting fashion yet again. The Tigers went 75 yards in four plays in under two minutes. Bazelak connected with Micah Wilson to tie things up yet again. The shootout continued. Absurd.
To keep things rolling in a similar fashion, Brennan threw one pass for 75 yards and another touchdown on LSU’s ensuing drive. LSU took the lead back just like that. 38-31 LSU. ABSURD.
Mizzou and LSU each failed to convert anything one either of their next drives. With just under five minutes to go in the third quarter, Mizzou started stirring offensively again. The hot-offensive pattern of the day carried on and Mizzou put another 7 points on the scoreboard. This time Bazelak linked up with Tyler Badie to tie the game at 38. That’s now over 300 pass yards for Bazelak.
For those who care, the over was 53.
In typical fashion, LSU’s response was quick. A 41 yard completion put the Tigers in a great position to put up another score, however an offensive holding penalty limited LSU to a 51 yard field goal attempt, which was successful.
Heading into the fourth quarter, Mizzou trailed 41-38.
Bazelak and Mizzou picked up right where they left off, thanks to some great running from Rountree III. Mizzou found themselves threatening LSU again but two holding penalties forced the offense off the field. Mevis missed a 56 yard field goal attempt, finally revealing that he is, in fact, human.
LSU looked like they were going to deliver a crushing blow following the missed field goal attempt, but another stand by Mizzou’s defense forced out LSU’s field goal unit. The kick was blocked and recovered by Mizzou.
With under seven minutes to go in the game, Mizzou converted a HUGE play down field to make it first and goal for the Tigers. Bazelak connected with Niko Hea on second down to give Mizzou the lead. Mizzou hadn’t led since 7-0.
Bazelak put up 406 yards and 4 touchdowns through the air following that drive.
The drama continued as LSU drove down field with the game virtually on the line. QB Myles Brennan completed a chain of short completions to help LSU break into Mizzou’s red zone with the clock winding down under a minute.
From the 1 yard line, with less than 20 seconds on the clock, on fourth down, Mizzou stopped LSU. That’s your ball game folks!
TIGERS WIN! TIGERS WIN!
Following the game, Coach Drinkwitz said that he and his coaching staff were incredibly proud of their football team. “They didn’t flinch. They didn’t flinch after turnovers. They didn’t flinch at the one yard line...I’m damn proud of this football team.”
Coach Drinkwitz said that during the goal line stand, “...it was our will versus theirs, and our guys wanted it more”.
An instant classic to begin the winning era here at NewZou.