Aug 15, 2013
Columbia, Mo. - Footballs filled the air early and often Thursday morning at Faurot Field/Memorial Stadium, where the Missouri Tigers held their second major scrimmage of fall camp. While the offense had a big day - as evidenced by nine touchdown passes combined by the top five quarterbacks - the defense still claimed a 14-10 scrimmage win to take a 5-4 lead in camp.
If that seems a little difficult to fathom, keep in mind that the scoring system used for scrimmages isn't standard, as only certain plays and certain series count toward the daily scoring.
With that, there were plenty of highlights on both sides of the ball Thursday. After the both of the top two defenses kept the top two offenses from getting a first down while backed up inside their own two-yard line to start action, the #1 offense got untracked.
Starting at their own 30-yardline and going against the #2 defense, senior QB James Franklin his senior WR L'Damian Washington on a 17-yard gain, and following an incompletion, that same duo hooked up for a 53-yard catch-and-run touchdown, as Washington broke one arm tackle attempt right after the catch, and turned on the burners to outrace everyone to pay dirt and the first score of the day.
That was the start of a big day for both seniors, as Franklin ended the scrimmage 16-of-21 passing for 189 yards and two touchdowns, while Washington had five receptions for a scrimmage-high 92 yards and the one score. Franklin would later lead the top offense to a 60-yard touchdown drive against the #2 defense, this one ending in his five-yard scoring strike to junior WR Jimmie Hunt. To end the day, Franklin led a two-minute drive down to the 19-yardline against the second string defense, with the big plays coming on a 14-yard pass to senior WR Marcus Lucas on 3rd-and-long, and a 12-yard strike to junior WR Bud Sasser to take the ball down to the 19-yardline.
Redshirt freshman QB Maty Mauk also threw for a pair of touchdowns Thursday, as did sophomore QB Corbin Berkstresser and freshman QB Eddie Printz, while freshman QB Trent Hosick had a single touchdown pass to his ledger.
Mauk's scores came on a 36-yard touchdown pass over the middle to senior TE Eric Waters (coming against the #1 defense) and later on an 11-yard strike to redshirt freshman WR Levi Copelin. Mauk would finish the day 12-of-20 passing for 150 yards, with two touchdowns and two interceptions. Both of the pickoffs came in the two minute drill, with the first one going to sophomore safety Ian Simon on a desperation 4th-and-long pass. The other pickoff ended the scrimmage for the day, as sophomore LB Kentrell Brothers jumped a seam route and took a knee to secure the win for the defense. That brought the turnover total to three on the day, as sophomore CB Ernest Payton had grabbed an interception midway through the scrimmage against Printz, returning the ball some 35 yards the other way before being pushed out of bounds.
Earlier in the day, Mauk also led a well-executed scoring drive against the #1 offense, thanks in large part to a nifty grab in traffic by junior WR Darius White which went for a gain of 30 yards. That long play set up an eventual 37-yard field goal attempt by sophomore PK Andrew Baggett, who drilled the kick.
Brothers' play ended a strong couple of series for the #1 defense in the two-minute drill. Senior CB Randy Ponder started things with a tackle of a Tiger running back in the backfield for a three-yard loss, and after a Mauk incompletion, senior DE Michael Sam got loose for a sack which preceded the aforementioned 4th-down heave downfield.
Reserve WR Gavin Otte continued some very productive play in camp, as the junior from Rolla, Mo., caught a scrimmage-high seven passes for 77 yards and three touchdowns. His scores included a nine-yard pass from Hosick, a 3-yard pass from Printz and a 17-yard pass from Berkstresser.
Junior DE Kony Ealy was one of the top play makers on defense Thursday, as he registered a pair of QB sacks, while senior DE Brayden Burnett and junior DT Lucas Vincent both had one-and-a-half sacks apiece. Vincent also turned in a big play for the #1 defense early in the day, when he stuffed a running play in the end zone for a safety.
With the second scrimmage in the books, the Tigers will return to the practice field Friday and Saturday morning for a pair of workouts. They will then have Sunday and Monday of next week off, which is the custom with Monday marking the first day of fall semester classes at Mizzou.
Stay tuned to www.MUTigers.com for continuing coverage of Mizzou's 2013 fall camp!
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