Keys to the game
Texas’ Michael Dickson. It’s rare you see punters declare early for the NFL Draft, but Dickson proved why he’s an exception. Dickson, the winner of the Ray Guy Award, given annually to the nation’s top punter, repeatedly pinned the Tigers deep in their own territory, which helped lead to a safety. Dickson gave the Texas defense a head start in plenty of series and made it a long night for Drew Lock and Co.
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Starting a drive late on its own 4-yard line, Missouri had a false start on the offensive line, and Lock threw a pick the following play with less than three minutes left. Missouri went into the drive down 10 points, but poor clock management by head coach Barry Odom beforehand cost the Tigers an additional 45 seconds. The play caused for an excessive celebration penalty by Texas, after defensive players mocked Lock for his ‘secure the bag’ pose.
For an offense that ranked among the nation’s best, Missouri played extremely conservatively. The Tigers ran the ball against one of the nation’s best run defenses and barely took the deep shots that helped define Missouri’s turnaround. The Tigers had plenty of penalties that made Texas’ life easier. MU did not capitalize when it had momentum. The Tigers are expected to announce their new offensive coordinator in the next few days.
Missouri had 11 tackles-for-loss, including a pair of sacks by senior Jordan Harold and did all that it could to keep the Tigers in the game. Freshman Adam Sparks played well, and senior Anthony Sherrils helped keep big plays to a minimum in the air.
Tucker McCann made the only field goal asked of him, and Corey Fatony had a below-average game that included a missed extra point. It was a bad snap but still kept points off the board for Missouri. The Tigers didn’t have any long punt or kick returns because of Texas punter Dickson.