Comments Off on The Inside Slant: NFL Season Over/Unders
BK is joined by Jeff Parles this week on The Inside Slant for an episode where the guys guess the over/unders and give their top picks for the 2015 season. Spoiler alert: the Rams are a team of conflict. Find out why in this week’s episode of The Inside Slant.
Dave Bartoo of CFB Matrix joined Matt and BK for his first weekly appearance on The Big Show.
Are fans overreacting after one week of football? Is Tennessee going to make a statement this weekend? And why does Dave think that strength of schedule is so overrated? All of that and more in this week’s conversation with the best in the business, Dave Bartoo.
Comments Off on Mizzou Media Day: Coaches & Players Sound Off
The Mizzou coaches and players met with the media on Monday in order to break down the team’s 34-3 victory over Southeast Missouri State, and to preview the Tigers’ upcoming game against Arkansas State.
The big topics of the day were, naturally, freshmen standouts Drew Lock and Terry Beckner Jr. The coaches and players also broke down the struggles of the running game, the injuries to Evan Boehm and Russell Hansbrough, and the importance of preparation before the team travels for their first road game of the season on Saturday.
Comments Off on The BK Lounge: Lock(ed) Up, Running in the Mud & #DLineZou, Take Two
Week one is officially in the books, which means it’s time to break down what took place in Mizzou’s 34-3 victory over Southeast Missouri State. This will be a new weekly feature on KTGR.com. It’ll be our way to put some closure on the weekend’s game, and move on to the next week’s opponent.
1) Lock(ed) Up: Drew Lock performed the way many of us expected. He was 6-10 for 138 yards and a touchdown. After charting his throws, I do think it’s important to note that he made a lot of quick, one-read passes. That’s not to say he’s not capable of doing more – he is, and he showed as much on the 78-yard touchdown pass to Tyler Hunt – but it’s something to keep in mind.
I had Lock throwing three corner routes (2-3), two tight end flair routes (2-2), two bubble screens (1-2 with a drop), a fade (dropped), a 10-yard curl (drop), and a wheel (?) route that resulted in Tyler Hunt’s insane touchdown. Of his 10 pass attempts, 9 were catchable and three were dropped. All in all, a hell of a debut for the true freshman quarterback.
2) Maukvember? It’s easy to forget Maty Mauk’s performance after watching Drew Lock, but Missouri’s redshirt junior quarterback had a pretty darn good day himself. Mauk finished the day 12-22 for 181 yards, two touchdowns and an interception. The completion percentage looks like ‘vintage Maty’, but it’s a bit deceiving.
I counted three passes from Mauk that were dropped, and one pass to Sean Culkin that was catchable, but I wouldn’t classify it as a ‘drop’, per-se. Two of those drops proved to be costly, as both would have resulted in touchdowns. Add in Culkin’s near tight-wire act along the back of the end zone that resulted in another touchdown coming off the board, and you can see that Mauk had a pretty solid day, all things considered. A 16-22 for 220 yards, four touchdowns and one interception type of day was not out of the realm of possibility.
3) Running in the mud? Starting running back Russell Hansbrough ran for 20 yards on the Tigers’ first play from scrimmage. Mizzou had 10 yards on its next 13 carries. That ain’t great, obviously. Hansbrough went down with an ankle sprain, and All SEC-caliber center Evan Boehm hobbled around with an ankle sprain for much of the 1st half, after a SEMO player rolled up on his leg on the second play from scrimmage. It’s fair to expect your offense to struggle when two of its best offensive players go down to injury. But the extent to which Missouri struggled running the ball in the first half is a concern.
That said, the running game did improve in the second half. The Tigers ran the football 19 times for 68 yards after the half, an average of 3.6 yards-per-carry. You would like to see that higher against an FCS opponent, but at least they improved from their 1.3 yards-per-carry in the first half.
Denny Medley-USA TODAY Sports
As for who is to blame, I’m not sure one party deserves more credit than another. It’s not like the offensive line was opening gaping holes that the running backs flat-out missed Trent Richardson style. But the backs also didn’t create much of their own good-fortune. The backup running back position was very much a question before week one, and Missouri’s game against SEMO did nothing but solidify that as one of the biggest question marks going forward.
4) WR-U? These wide receivers won’t be mistaken for the 2013 team’s that featured Dorial Green-Beckham, L’Damian Washington, Marcus Lucas, Bud Sasser and Jimmie Hunt, but they’re certainly not the liability that many believed them to be. There were drop issues here and there, sure. And Mauk had to coach up Nate Brown after he broke the wrong way on a route, and DeSean Blair after he stopped short of where the football was thrown – a play that nearly resulted in an interception. However, the receivers did make some plays.
Denny Medley-USA TODAY Sports
J’Mon Moore went up and high-pointed the football in a way that coaches will be showing their players for weeks to come. Nate Brown ran crisp routes, created separation and sustained blocks down the field that allowed receivers to gain extra yards on a few separate occasions. I also like what I saw from Keyon Dilosa on those quick bubble screens. He could be a guy that this team can go to three or four times a game for some quick offense. Add in Sean Culkin and Jason Reese, who masquerade as wide receivers more often than they’re in-line as a true “tight end”, and you have the makings of a really solid position group heading into the more difficult portion of the 2015 season.
5) #DLineZou Take Two: This defensive line won’t rack up 40+ sacks the way the Tigers did each of the past two seasons. But they put constant pressure on SEMO’s quarterback, and I really liked what I saw from Mizzou’s young players. Charles Harris was active early, and never really slowed down. Terry Beckner Jr. seemed to get better as the game went along, as one would expect for a kid getting his first action on a division one football field. Rickey Hatley was the biggest surprise performer. Coaches have said all throughout fall camp that Hatley among the best Mizzou defensive linemen. On Saturday, we saw why. He was making the types of plays that Lucas Vincent made last season, collapsing the pocket and forcing running backs out of their lane.
6) Oh, Brother. My goodness, Kentrell Brothers. 16 tackles, 1.5 tackles-for-loss, and a blocked quick punt. And, honestly, the stats don’t quite indicate just how active Brothers was throughout the day. David Morrison had a great stat in his “Snap Decisions” post – “Brothers’ 16 tackles came in 51 snaps, or 3.19 snaps per tackle.” That ish is bananas. B-a-n-a-n-a-s.
7) #NoFlyZone: Mizzou’s secondary allowed 56 passing yards. Total. Oh, and Kenya Dennis is still really good at this football thing.
Bill Connelly of SB Nation joined Matt and BK for his weekly appearance on The Big Show to break down Mizzou’s 34-3 win over SEMO. Hear Bill every Monday on The Big Show from 4-6 pm on ESPN 103.1 FM in Columbia or online at KTGR.com.
Paul Bessire of PredictionMachine.com simulates every game 50,000 times before the game is played. Where does his system project Mizzou to finish this season? And who is the favorite to win the World Series? The answer may surprise you.