Missouri Tigers look to challenge Florida, SEC


The Missouri Tigers haven’t won consecutive games in-season, since the start of the 2015 season. Now, Missouri looks to challenge Florida and remaining SEC opponents.

Those three games were against Southeast Missouri, Arkansas State and UConn. Since that streak, the Tigers have won nine games. This recent win series was refreshing, albeit a bit skewed, considering the opponents. Unfortunately, the Tigers aren’t in a position to pick and choose their victories, and will take them as they come.

Missouri’s remaining schedule is intriguing, at the very least – deceptive, at worst. In its last four games, the Tigers have the potential to go 4-0, and finish the season with a 7-5 record and a bowl berth, or they can as easily go 0-4, and finish the season with three wins.

I think Missouri will finish somewhere in between those two marks, because the Tigers’ defensive secondary is still, largely, a hot mess, but the defensive front has shown some improvement. The offense looks much improved, and the running game seems to be on pace to remain competitive, despite the loss of running back Damarea Crockett.

Missouri Tigers Football
Missouri Tigers Football /

Missouri Tigers Football

All of the above is nice, but the Tigers still have to execute and make smart plays in order to remain competitive and win at least three more games to finish with a .500 record and earn a bowl game.

Statistically, Missouri has a fair shot at peeling off at least two, maybe three wins in that grouping, especially against Vanderbilt, Arkansas, and Tennessee.

Now that Jim McElwain has been ousted as Florida’s head coach, the potential for Missouri to play spoiler to the Gators is also a possibility.

According to Dave Matter of the St. Louis Post, Mizzou’s remaining opponents rank No. 9, 11, 12 and 14 in the SEC in yards per play allowed, and 10, 11, 12 and 14 in yards gained per play. Missouri is No. 10 in yards per play allowed, while the offense is No. 1 in yards per play.

Prior to winning its two games against UConn and Idaho, Missouri played tough and almost won on the road at Kentucky, and the following week played a good first half against Georgia, before the Bulldogs crushed the Tigers on the ground.

Georgia, which only allowed the Gators to put up seven points, allowed the Tigers to hang 28 points, of which 21 came in the first half. Offensively, Missouri has the power to do the same against Florida.

Without a doubt, Georgia is the best team in the SEC East, and will likely find its way to the playoffs and may face SEC West power, Alabama. So the fact that Mizzou scored 28 points on the Bulldogs is a testament to the Tigers abilities when they’re calling and making the right plays on offense.

The Tigers’ remaining schedule includes two home games against Florida (11/4) and Tennessee (11/11). The Tigers hit the road for their final games of the season at Vanderbilt (11/18) and at Arkansas (11/24).

Missouri may also fail miserably in the next few weeks and call it a season, thus missing a bowl game, like last year. It will come down to smart play calls, and execution by the offense, as well as limiting the stupid mistakes and playing better on special teams.

Next: Mizzou looks to salvage season

The Tigers’ recent win streak, until proven otherwise, is a mirage in the grand scheme of things, but Missouri has also shown it can compete when the opportunities to do so come together.