Time after time when Missouri was in the shotgun against Indiana, junior center Evan Boehm’s snaps were delivered head high or higher.
It was bad enough that Boehm felt compelled to apologize to sophomore quarterback Maty Mauk after the game.
“It’s my fault,” Boehm said. “I’ll get them better and get them fixed. … They should be perfect. That’s the standard I hold for myself and why I get so upset when I have one that’s bad.”
Fortunately, Boehm believes he corrected the problem and doesn’t expect the snap struggles to linger into Saturday’s game at South Carolina.
“He’s just releasing it too late,” offensive coordinator Josh Henson said. “He needs to release it a little sooner.”
Missouri had fiddled with a new snap signal at the beginning of the season.
Rather than look under his legs for Mauk to lift his leg, pull his head back up, get set and then snap, Boehm was being tapped by one of the guards, who were looking back at Mauk, for his cue that the play was ready.
The Tigers reverted to the old way of snapping, with Boehm peeking between his legs, but Henson doesn’t believe that was a factor.
It was a physical error that became akin to a golfer with the putting yips, Missouri coach Gary Pinkel said.
“It’s a little bit of both,” Henson said. “I think it became mental after a few of them last week, but the beginning of it, the root cause of it, is physical.”
Missouri believes both issues have been ironed out. Boehm was perfect with his snaps Sunday at practice
“I think he’s back on that horse and he’ll be fine,” junior right guard Connor McGovern said.
Senior left tackle Mitch Morse offered his support after the game. If anyone understands Boehm’s struggles, Morse would be the guy.
“It’s the same exact thing that I had trouble with when I was snapping,” said Morse, who began 2012 as the Tigers’ starting center before shifting to guard as injuries mounted.
He has no doubt Boehm will bounce back.
“He’s a very competitive person and, when he feels at fault for something, it weighs on him heavily,” Morse said. “But it’s good it happened now. He’s going to fix it and he’s going to excel at center.”
He continued, “With a guy like that, he’s going to push himself to fix the problem, and I have full confidence — and I’ve got his back. Social media kind of tore him apart and I was like, ‘Listen, dude, it happened to me. You’ve just got to let it go. It’s not going to help you prepare for this next week. You’ve just got to get back on the field and focus.’ He has been, and it’s great to see.”