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Missouri-Syracuse game report

  • Published Sunday, Nov. 18, 2012, at 12:25 a.m.
  • Updated Sunday, Nov. 18, 2012, at 12:25 a.m.

Report card

B OffenseThe Tigers gained 484 yards, so it’s hard to nitpick too much. But they still fell a few plays short of a victory and never put the Orange away.
D DefenseThe Tigers forced a turnover, but whenever you allow 508 yards, including the game-winning scoring drive late in the fourth quarter, that’s how you lose a game.
C Special teamsAndrew Baggett made one of two field goals, but there weren’t many game-changing plays in the other facets.
D CoachingMissouri started out strong, but the Tigers let the Orange linger. The lack of a killer instinct is a teamwide thing, but it ultimately falls on the coaches.

First quarter

Key play: Trailing MU 14-3, Syracuse needed to convert third and 14 at MU’s 44 to keep the drive going. But receiver Alex Lemon was hauled down short of the first down.

Key stat: Quarterback James Franklin completed eight of his first nine passes for 173 yards and two touchdowns.

Second quarter

Key play: MU advanced to Syracuse’s 2 when Franklin lofted a ball over the middle to Dorian Green-Beckham, who was interfered with. The play set up a 20-yard field goal.

Key stat: Missouri outgained Syracuse 282-207 in total yards in the half.

Third quarter

Key play: Facing fourth and 1 at their own 45-yard line, Syracuse tried to draw the Tigers offside, but Missouri stayed disciplined and forced a punt.

Key stat: Through the first three quarters, Syracuse ran 55 plays to Missouri’s 54.

Fourth quarter

Key play: MU had a chance to win the game when Syracuse had fourth and 6 at the Tigers’ 36, but quarterback Ryan Nassib found receiver Alec Lemon over the middle for a first down. The two connected on the next play for the game-winning score.

Key stat: Syracuse outgained Missouri 508-484.

Player of the game: Syracuse receiver Alec Lemon caught 12 passes for 244 yards and two touchdowns.

Reason to hope: Corbin Berkstresser looked better than he had in relief of starting quarterback James Franklin, so there’s that.

Reason to mope: Missouri possibly blew its best chance to reach the six-win mark and become bowl eligible.

Looking ahead: Missouri takes to the road to face No. 9 Texas A&M in the season finale. Stopping star freshman quarterback Johnny Manziel won’t be easy, but Missouri has won in College Station the last two years, so there’s that.

| Terez A. Paylor, tpaylor@kcstar.com

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