MO State HS Sports

Football Opens Season With 35-10 Win Over South Dakota

Schrader vs South Dakota

COLUMBIA, Mo. – A suffocating effort by the Missouri Tigers defense and four first-half touchdown drives engineered by quarterback Brady Cook sent the Tigers on their way to a 35-10 season-opening victory over the South Dakota Coyotes.

After one quarter, Mizzou (1-0) had a two-touchdown lead, and the Tigers held a 136-5 edge in total yards gained. By halftime, that margin had grown to 295-62, and MU led, 28-3. The Coyotes (0-1) went three-and-out four times on their six first-half possessions.

The Tigers faithful came out for the primetime affair, with 50,434 in Memorial Stadium, the largest crowd for an MU home opener since 2019 against West Virginia. 

Missouri’s first points of the season came on the Tigers’ second drive. Taking over at its own 48-yard line, Mizzou moved 52 yards on six plays, with Cook hitting Mekhi Miller on an 18-yard TD pass over the middle. It was the first TD for the sophomore receiver. After freshman tight end Jordon Harris partially blocked a USD punt that traveled only nine yards, Nathaniel Peat capped a short drive with a 1-yard touchdown run.

After the Tigers didn’t convert a 48-yard field goal early in the second quarter, the Coyotes moved 47 yards on 12 plays to a 40-yard field goal by Will Leyland.

But then Cook, who completed his first 11 passes, directed two long scoring drives. First, Cody Schrader capped an 81-yard march with a 2-yard TD run; then taking over with 1:25 remaining before halftime, Cook drove the Tigers 83 yards in just 52 seconds and ran the final 15 yards for a TD on a quarterback draw. The big play of the drive was a 30-yard pass down the right sideline to Luther Burden III, who had a career-high 81 receiving yards on six receptions in the opening two quarters.

Cook, who turned the reins over to Sam Horn in the third quarter, finished his day 17-for-21 for 172 yards and ran three times for 17 yards.

On the Tigers’ first second-half possession, Horn completed a 31-yard pass to Miller to the USD 20-yard line, but Mevis missed a 35-yard field goal.

South Dakota scored a third-quarter touchdown after a Horn pass went through the hands of Miller and into those of Coyote cornerback Myles Harden. Three plays later, quarterback Aidan Bouman lofted a six-yard TD pass to running back Mike Mansaray.

Horn got the Tigers into the endzone in the fourth quarter hitting Burden on a third-and-15 play for a touchdown on a bubble screen. A key play on the 78-yard drive was a 42-yard run by Schrader who posted his first 100-yard rushing game, finishing with 18 carries for 148 yards.

Missouri has won 14 consecutive home games against non-conference opponents and has won 23 of its last 27 season-opening games.

The Tigers finished with 447 total yards to the Coyotes’ 194.

Defensive end Johnny Walker, Jr. was Mizzou’s leading tackler with six, including a half-sack and a quarterback hurry. Ennis Rakestraw, Jr. had five tackles and broke up a pass. True freshman Marvin Burks Jr. made his presence felt early in the third quarter on a fourth-down play when he blitzed the quarterback off the edge and sacked Bouman for a loss of nine yards. He finished with four tackles including three solos.

The Tigers remain at home next week to host the Middle Tennessee State Blue Raiders, who open their season Saturday at Alabama. Game time on Saturday, Sept. 9, is 6 p.m. CT at Memorial Stadium/Faurot Field. The game will be televised on the SEC Network+/ESPN+. Coinciding with the game is Mizzou’s annual Family Weekend, and recognition of the 2023 class of the University of Missouri Intercollegiate Athletics Hall of Fame.

Season, group and single-game tickets are available for purchase now by calling 1-800-CAT-PAWS or buying online. Fans interested in learning more about available season tickets can fill out an interest form.

For all the latest information on Mizzou Athletics, please visit For up-to-the-minute updates, follow the Tigers on TwitterInstagram and Facebook.

This article is provided by University of Missouri Athletics