University of Missouri

Grading Missouri’s 42-10 win over Troy and looking ahead to Mississippi

Missouri beat Troy 42-10 on Saturday, giving coach Barry Odom his first win out of a bye week against an FBS team. The Tigers are 4-1 heading into their next game against Mississippi, but face uncertainty after quarterback Kelly Bryant injured his left knee at the end of the first half.

Here are grades for the offense, defense, special teams and coaches, plus a preview of Mississippi.

Play of the game

Cale Garrett’s pick-six: Garrett had two interceptions on Saturday and is putting together an All-American season after having a fumble recovery for a touchdown against South Carolina and another pick-six against Southeast Missouri a few weeks earlier. The Tigers defense is dominant and is getting strong play from every position.

Grades

Offense: A. Kelly Bryant rebounded from a rough game against South Carolina and had an impressive touchdown pass to Albert Okwuegbunam. The Tigers’ wideouts had their best game of the season after not showing much the first three games. MU continues to shuffle the offensive line, even with Yasir Durant back, which is something to watch going forward.

Defense: A+. Missouri held Troy to just 32 yards after a rough opening drive, which led to the first touchdown MU allowed in the first quarter all season. Garrett continued to play like an All-American, and the defensive line continued to be a factor. This defense could be better than Odom’s 2015 defense.

Special teams: B. Richaud Floyd hurt his hamstring early in the game, and his replacement, Jonathan Johnson, didn’t do much. Tucker McCann had some bad punts and missed a field goal, but that didn’t end up hurting MU.



Coaching: A+. Not much to complain about with a win like that, and Odom got smart at halftime and pulled a lot of his starters after Bryant went down. Odom’s coaching ability could come under the microscope the next few weeks as MU has three very winnable games with Bryant’s health in question.

Next up

As Missouri welcomes Mississippi on Saturday (6 p.m. on ESPN2), here are two things the Tigers need to improve:

The quarterback situation: If Bryant is going to miss games, MU needs to see what it has in Taylor Powell. Odom said the offense wouldn’t change much if Powell is the starter, but he has a bit of a different skill set.

Figure out the offensive line: Offensive coordinator Derek Dooley previously said he was spoiled last year with MU’s offensive line because the Tigers only made changes for injuries. The line has been shuffled all season. At some point MU has to figure out what it has at each spot.

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Alex Schiffer has been covering the Missouri Tigers for The Star since October 2017. He came in second place for magazine-length feature writing by the U.S. Basketball Writer’s Association in 2018 and graduated from Mizzou in 2017.
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