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20 for 20: #17- Tiger Bait

Remembering that cold, crisp, October morning where the Tigers feasted on some fried Gator.

Florida v Missouri
Kony Ealy closing in on a sack.
Photo by Jamie Squire/Getty Images

2013: Missouri 36 - Florida 17

I will never forget this game as long as I live. I was a junior in high school, and had ridden up to Columbia from St. Louis to go see this 11am game. It was crisp, it was cool, it was a sellout. There was an electric atmosphere. You could feel it.

The week previously in Athens, the Tigers had just lost QB James Franklin, but the backup, QB Maty Mauk filled in admirably and actually led the Tigers to a win against Georgia. I remember the next week feeling a little uneasy about a freshman QB starting against what was a ranked Florida team. They had a week to prepare, and I thought surely that he would struggle.

He didn’t.

His first drive of the first half, ended in a two plays with a touchdown. He would end the half with a 13-10 advantage.

Florida at Missouri Shane Keyser/Kansas City Star/Tribune News Service via Getty Images

The second half, however, is where the Tigers would shine. This 2013 team was notorious for closing, and close they would. In the fourth quarter, they would go on and score 13 unanswered points capped by this tightrope run along the sideline for Mauk (0:48). This was all the while Michael Sam was making Florida QB Tyler Murphy’s day a living hell, sacking him three times.

All of this was really good. All of this was so extremely fun. None of it was as fun as this. Serenading the Gators with their own chomps after a decisive victory felt like a perfect middle finger to a school that always does less with more, and was part of that SEC establishment that thought Mizzou didn’t belong.

I remember leaving the stadium thinking that this team was different, and that they were special. I didn’t know where this game was going to take us, but I do remember thinking that this team absolutely belonged in the SEC.

Come relive that glorious day.