Missouri junior Markus Golden is the Southeastern Conference defensive lineman of the week after returning an interception for a 70-yard touchdown Saturday during a 38-23 win against Toledo at Memorial Stadium.
Golden, a St. Louis native and star at Affton High School, bulled into the Rockets’ backfield and had quarterback Terrance Owens in his sights when the ball slipped from Owens’ left hand and into Golden’s arms on the opening drive of the third quarter.
Golden raced untouched to the end zone after bowling over Owens, giving the Tigers a 24-9 lead.
“It was a huge momentum play and a great play by him,” coach Gary Pinkel said after the victory.
It also helped restore order for Missouri a bit. Four plays earlier, linebacker Andrew Wilson was penalized 15 yards and ejected for targeting when he hit Toledo wide receiver Bernard Reedy in the helmet with a forearm on a pass over the middle.
Of course, Golden also was penalized for unsportsmanlike conduct after powering the ball to the ground in the end zone and pointing to the crowd, but it still stood as a critical play for the Tigers, who started the season 2-0 for the first time since 2010.