Dec. 21, 2008
KICKOFF: 7:00 p.m. CT.
STADIUM: Alamodome (65,000 - artificial surface). Opened in 1993. MU is 0-1 there, dropping the 2007 Big 12 Championship Game.
RADIO: Tiger Network. Mike Kelly (play-by-play), John Kadlec (color), Chris Gervino (sidelines), Mark Mills (engineer). Carried on over 50 stations across the Midwest.
Satellite radio owners may also find the game on Sirius (channel 120) and XM (channel 140).
TV: ESPN (HD). Ron Franklin (play-by-play), Ed Cunningham (color), Jack Arute (sidelines), Eric Posman (producer), Patrick McManus (director).
MU - #21.
NU - #23.
SERIES: Series is tied, 4-4, but this will be the first meeting since 1987. Mizzou won that meeting, 28-3.
MU: Gary Pinkel (Kent, `75), 58-41 at MU (8th year) and 131-78-3 overall (18th year). Pinkel is 0-0 versus NU and Pat Fitzgerald.
NU: Pat Fitzgerald (Northwestern, '97), 19-17 at NU (3rd year) and overall. Fitzgerald is 0-0 versus MU and Gary Pinkel.
2008 VALERO ALAMO BOWL
#25/21 Missouri Tigers (9-4)
vs. #22/23 Northwestern Wildcats (9-3)
Dec. 29, 2008 - Alamodome - San Antonio, Texas
TIGERS FACE WILDCATS IN 2008 VALERO ALAMO BOWL
The 25th-ranked Missouri Tigers (9-4 overall, 5-3 in Big 12 play and North Division Champions) will play in their fourth consecutive bowl game for only the second time in school history, when they take on the 22nd-ranked Northwestern Wildcats (9-3, 5-3 and 4th in Big Ten) Dec. 29th in the 2008 Valero Alamo Bowl in San Antonio, Texas. The game, which will be televised nationally on ESPN, has a kick time of 7 p.m. (central) from the Alamodome.
The Tigers are looking to bounce back from a pair of defeats that closed the 2008 regular season. They're coming of a 62-21 loss to #1-ranked Oklahoma in the Dr. Pepper Big 12 Championship Game on Dec. 6th in Kansas City, Mo., and that was preceded by a heart-breaking 40-37 last-second loss to arch-rival Kansas on Nov. 29th (also played in Kansas City). Mizzou had won four straight games prior to the current stretch, with the wins coming by an average margin of 27.5 points. The Tigers enter the bowl game ranked 25th in the Associated Press poll, and 23rd in the USA Today Coaches' Poll, while ranking 21st in the final BCS standings.
Northwestern comes into the game having won its last two games, including wins at Michigan (21-14) and at home against Illinois (27-10). The Wildcats won their first five games of the year and followed by alternating wins and losses each week until the final two-game win streak. Northwestern comes into the game ranked 22nd in the A.P. poll, 20th in the Coaches' poll and 23rd in the BCS standings.
MIZZOU MAKING RECORD 4TH-STRAIGHT BOWL APPEARANCE
The 2008 Alamo Bowl will represent Mizzou's 4th-consecutive bowl game appearance, and that ties the school record of four, with the only other such streak coming from the 1978-81 squads, under former Coach Warren Powers.
This game will mark the fifth bowl in six years for MU under Head Coach Gary Pinkel. Last season, the Tigers closed a record-smashing year with a 38-7 dismantling of #25 Arkansas in the 2008 AT&T Cotton Bowl to end the year 12-2 overall and claim a #4 final Associated Press ranking - the highest final ranking in school history. Prior to that, under Pinkel, the Tigers dropped a last-second heart-breaker to Oregon State in the 2006 Brut Sun Bowl, notched a 38-31 win over South Carolina in the 2005 Independence Bowl and dropped a 27-14 decision to Arkansas in the 2003 MainStay Independence Bowl.
Pinkel is 3-2 overall as a head coach in bowls, with his other appearance being a 40-37 overtime win over Nevada in the 1995 Las Vegas Bowl, while at Toledo. That game was the very first game played in NCAA Division I-A (FBS) history with the then-brand new overtime tiebreaker system in place.
In all, the Alamo Bowl will mark MU's 26th bowl game appearance in school history - a figure which ranks as 28th-most in FBS history (Alabama leads with 56). The Tigers sport an alltime bowl game record of 11-14, with the 11 wins ranked 31st-best in NCAA annals.
The Alamo Bowl marks Pinkel's 5th bowl appearance at MU, putting him among the school's best. Legendary Coach Dan Devine led the Tigers to six bowl games in 13 years (1958-70), while Warren Powers made five bowls in seven years (1978-84), with Pinkel standing tied with Powers at five.
||Big 12 North
||Big 12 North
MIZZOU'S CONFERENCE CHAMPIONSHIP HISTORY
While division championships might not be the biggest achievement known to mankind, the North Division title claimed by Mizzou in 2008 is no small feat, as it is only the 14th conference or division championship the team has won in its 118-year history.
Also, it represents the first time since 1941-42 that MU has won or shared a conference or division title in football. That's when the Tigers won the Big Six Conference in back-to-back years, very similar to the current six-team division championship.
Here's a quick look...
TIGERS CAN BECOME ONLY 3RD TEAM IN MU HISTORY WITH DOUBLE-DIGIT WINS
Mizzou will take to the field in San Antonio with a chance at making history. With a 9-4 record entering the game, the Tigers will look to become only the third team in school history to record double-digit wins in a season.
The current bunch is already only the fifth Tiger squad to notch as many as nine wins in a season. Should the Tigers win against Northwestern, it would also mean a special achievement, as MU has never had back-to-back seasons with double-digit win totals (Mizzou went 12-2 a year ago).
Additionally, MU has now won eight regular-season games for three straight years, and that is a school record. The only other time Mizzou has had at least eight regular-season wins in back-to-back years came way back in 1941 and 1942.
Tiger Coach Gary Pinkel has now won eight regular season games four times in his eight years at Mizzou, and that ties him with MU legendary coach Don Faurot for the most in school history. The great Dan Devine did the deed twice during his tenure at Mizzou.
||Georgia, Penn State, Boston College,
Cincinnati, Texas Tech, Tulsa
TIGERS 3RD IN MOST WINS IN NATION OVER LAST TWO SEASONS
With a school-record 12 wins in 2007, and 9 wins to this point in 2008, MU's two-year win total of 21 is tied for 3rd-most in the nation during that time period. Here's a look at the leaders...
Additionally, MU's three-year win total of 29 wins (MU won 8 games in 2006) ranks as tied for 10th-best in the NCAA during the 2006-08 stretch. Boise State leads from 2006-08 with 35, with Oklahoma and Florida next at 34, followed by Ohio State at 33...
TIGERS RANK AMONG NCAA'S ALLTIME BEST IN STATS
This Tiger team has some pretty historically significant players on its team, and not just from a program standpoint, we're talking from an NCAA perspective...
- Senior TE Chase Coffman is the most prolific pass-catching TE in NCAA Division I-A (FBS) history, with his 240 career receptions. The 2 games he missed in November due to his turf toe injury will likely keep him from reaching the alltime TE receiving yardage record of 2,830 by Louisville's Ibn Green (1996-99). Coffman has 2,592 career yards entering the bowl game...
- When the final gun sounds ending the Alamo Bowl, senior PK Jeff Wolfert is likely to finish his career as the most accurate kicker in NCAA history for combined FGs/PATs. He's made an astounding 238-of-250 (95.2%) combined kicks in 2006, 2007 and 2008. Those numbers break out to 56-of-68 (82.4%) on FGs and a perfect 182-of-182 on PATs. The NCAA record for combined kick accuracy is 93.3% by UCLA's John Lee (1982-85). Statistically, Wolfert would have to go 0-for-5 on kicks in the Alamo Bowl to drop below Lee's career record...
- Senior QB Chase Daniel ranks 7th alltime on the NCAA Division I-A (FBS) career chart in total offense (13,256 yards), and is also 8th in career TD passes (99) and is 11th in career passing yards (12,315), despite being a starter for only three seasons...
- Oh, by the way, the Tigers also boast the NCAA's #1 all-purpose man in 2008 in sophomore WR/PR/KR Jeremy Maclin, who leads the country with a per-game average of 203.54 yards. Maclin had the most prolific freshman all-purpose yardage season in NCAA Division I-A history in 2007, with 2,776 yards...
COFFMAN WINS MACKEY AWARD
University of Missouri senior tight end Chase Coffman (Peculiar, Mo.) was named on Dec. 11th as the recipient of the 2008 John Mackey Award, given annually to the nation's top tight end. Coffman, who was announced as the award winner during the ESPNU Home Depot College Football Awards Show from the Atlantic Dance Hall on the Disney Boardwalk in Orlando, Fla., beat out a pair of Big 12 Conference competitors, as the other two finalists along with Coffman are Jermaine Gresham of Oklahoma and Brandon Pettigrew of Oklahoma State.
He becomes the first Tiger to win a national individual position award, and he joins former standout Brock Olivo as the only Tigers to win national awards. Olivo was the recipient of the Mosi Tutupu Special Teams Player of the Year Award in 1997.
Coffman got to see first-hand in Orlando his name be called for the award, but not by design. The Mackey is not presented formally at the show, so the tight end finalists are not invited to take part in the proceedings. However, when his teammate Jeremy Maclin, who was a finalist for the Biletnikoff Award, was invited, he chose to take Coffman as his guest because he felt his tight end deserved to be there - a great show by a teammate that paid off when Coffman was named the award winner.
Coffman won the award, despite being hobbled the entire last month of the season after suffering a sprained toe (turf toe) during a two-touchdown day at Baylor on Nov. 1st. The injury forced him out of subsequent games against Kansas State and Iowa State, and kept him well below 100 percent for the last two games against Kansas and Oklahoma. In spite of that, Coffman was the clear top statistical tight end among BCS schools, with his 83 receptions for 920 yards and 10 touchdowns.
Coffman has also excelled in the classroom, as he is scheduled to earn his degree this December - in only 3 ½ years. He's taking 18 hours of classwork this semester in order to finish up his degree work.
His top receiving games in 2008 have included 12 catches for 140 yards and 1 TD at #1 Texas, 11 catches for 104 yards against #17 Oklahoma State, 6 catches for 127 yards and 1 TD against Nevada and 9 catches for 120 yards and 1 TD against #20 Illinois.
Earlier this season, Coffman became the NCAA Football Bowl Subdivision's (Div. I-A) alltime top pass-catching tight end in history. He has 240 career receptions, which has surpassed the previous FBS career record of 217 by Louisville's Ibn Green (1996-99).
Coffman will be formally presented with the Mackey Trophy at the Nassau County Sports Commission Annual Awards Dinner on April 27, 2009.
COFFMAN, MACLIN NAMED ALL-AMERICANS
For the second straight year, Mizzou has had a pair of standouts win first-team All-America designation by outlets considered by the NCAA as part of their consensus team. Senior TE Chase Coffman, through Dec. 11th, had been named the 1st-Team tight end on all three teams released to that point (AFCA, Walter Camp, FWAA), while sophomore WR/KR/PR Jeremy Maclin was named 1st-Team All-American by the Walter Camp Football Foundation as a punt returner.
The NCAA recognizes five All-American teams to determine its consensus picks, with the three above added to teams chosen by the Associated Press and The Sporting News. A player who is named on the most of those five teams at his position is considered a consensus pick, and since Coffman has already sewn up three of the five (as of Dec. 11th) he'll be Mizzou's second-consecutive consensus 1st-Team All-American tight end. Martin Rucker (who is now playing with the NFL's Cleveland Browns) was a consensus 1st-Team All-American in 2007 after being named on three of the five teams recognized by the NCAA for his season, which included 84 catches for 834 yards and 8 TDs.
We're going to take a flyer and just declare that this means Mizzou is "Tight End U."
Maclin is a 1st-Team All-American for the second straight season, as he won consensus acclaim in 2007 as an all-purpose player (named on three teams). He was also one of three finalists for the Biletnikoff Award, with all three being Big 12 stud wideouts. Texas Tech's Michael Crabtree was named the winner of the award for the second straight year, but we definitely feel that Maclin was right there in being very worthy of the honor. While there is no denying that the other two have outstanding numbers, consider how valuable Maclin is to the Tigers, and how much he does for this football team, in terms of all-purpose ability. The Biletnikoff Award goes to the nations' best receiver, but we feel it is warranted to factor in everything that Maclin does, in addition to the fact that his receiving numbers compare very favorably to the other two.
||121 total points
||478 total yards
MACLIN COULD BE 1ST NCAA STAT CHAMPION AT MU SINCE 1968
Sophomore do-everything man WR/KR/PR Jeremy Maclin comes into the Alamo Bowl as the NCAA's leader in all-purpose yardage, with a nation's-best 203.5 yards-per game average. If he closes the season on top of the NCAA charts, he'll become only the fourth Tiger in history to win an NCAA statistical championship - the last came way back in 1968 when All-American and eventual College Football and NFL Hall of Fame inductee Roger Wehrli led the nation in punt returns.
Here's a look at MU's NCAA stat champs...
||Barry Sanders, Oklahoma State
||Ryan Benjamin, Pacific
||Chris Johnson, East Carolina
||Reggie Bush, USC
||Kevin Smith, UCF
||Troy Edwards, Louisiana Tech
||Jeremy Maclin, Mizzou
||Darren Sproles, Kansas State
||Mike Pringle, Cal St.-Fullerton
||Dante Love, Ball State
||Jeremy Maclin, Mizzou
MACLIN'S ALL-PURPOSE TOTAL CLOSING IN ON NCAA TOP-10
Jeremy Maclin, who has already been named a 1st-Team All-American by the Walter Camp Football Foundation as a punt returner (his second-straight year being a 1st-Team All-American), is closing in on the top-10 for most all-purpose yardage by a player in NCAA single-season history.
Maclin has 2,646 all-purpose yards through 13 games in 2008, and he stands just 44 yards away from the top-10 list. His 2,776 yards in 2007 was the 7th-best in NCAA single-season history, and is the alltime record for freshmen.
Additionally, Maclin, despite being only a sophomore, is the current active career leader for all-purpose yards, with his two-year career total of 5,422 yards (200.8 avg.). Next-best on the list is Michigan State senior RB Javon Ringer, who has 5,349 career yards in 44 games (121.6 avg.).
Here's a look at the NCAA charts...
28 TEXAS TIGERS MAKE RETURN TRIP HOME
From day one of his tenure at Missouri, Head Coach Gary Pinkel identified the state of Texas as a recruiting priority. Over the years, the Tigers have mined the state for athletes who developed into All-Big 12 honorees, including the likes of MU's alltime career QB sacks leader, Brian Smith, as well as 2006 1st-Team All-Big 12 LB Marcus Bacon, in addition to other standouts such as David Overstreet, Jason Simpson, Shirdonya Mitchell, and Marcus King, among others.
Mizzou features 28 Texas natives on its roster in 2008, including six projected starters for the bowl game, in QB Chase Daniel (Southlake), LB Sean Weatherspoon (Jasper), DE Stryker Sulak (Rockdale), DT Ziggy Hood (Amarillo), DE Tommy Chavis (Orange) and WR Jared Perry (La Marque). Add to that mix some key reserves such as WR Danario Alexander (Marlin), WR Earl Goldsmith (Denton), S Del Howard (Dallas) and CB Kevin Rutland (Houston) and there's quite a flavor of Texans on the field at any time for the Tigers.
In addition, five of Mizzou's 10 true freshmen who have seen the field in 2008 are from the Lone Star State, including LB Will Ebner (Friendswood), TE Michael Egnew (Plainview), WR Jerrell Jackson (Houston), DB Kenji Jackson (Mansfield) and DE Jacquies Smith (Dallas).
LAST YEAR IN ALAMODOME: #9 OKLAHOMA 38, #1 MIZZOU 17
Top-ranked Mizzou's dreams of playing in the BCS title game came to a halt, as the 9th-ranked Oklahoma Sooners continued their mastery of the series, pulling away from a tie game in the second half to post a 38-17 win in the Big 12 Championship game played at the Alamodome in San Antonio, Texas.
The title was OU's fifth in the last eight years, and the Sooners played like championship-game veterans in the second half as they denied Mizzou its first-ever Big 12 title, holding the Tigers under 30 points for the first time on the season.
Mizzou had plenty of opportunities on the night, but couldn't convert much-needed TDs in the redzone, as it only got 3 FGs and 1 TD out of 4 redzone pushes, while OU converted 6 redzone chances into 5 TDs and 1 FG, for the difference in the game.
The Tigers undoubtedly missed TE Chase Coffman, who missed the game with an ankle injury. Coffman, who was a force in the redzone all year for Mizzou, had 9 redzone TD receptions coming into the game, and had caught 10 passes for 102 yards at Oklahoma during their earlier regular-season matchup in Norman, Okla.
The key sequence in the game came early in the third quarter, with the game tied at 14-apiece. After forcing an Oklahoma punt on the first possession of the half, the Tigers drove from their 7-yardline to a 1st-and-10 at the Sooner 25-yardline, and appeared ready to seize control of the game. But the OU defense responded by sacking QB Chase Daniel twice in the next three plays, pushing MU out of scoring range, and the Tigers were forced to punt.
The Sooners responded by driving 80 yards for the lead touchdown, converting a pair of key third downs along the way, to take a 21-14 lead with 4:04 left in the third on a 4-yard run by Patrick Allen. Things got worse for Mizzou right away, however, as on MU's ensuing possession, a Daniel pass intended for TE Martin Rucker went off Rucker's hands high into the air, and into the waiting hands of OU LB Curtis Lofton, who returned the ball 26 yards to the Tiger 7-yardline. Two plays later, a short TD pass from QB Sam Bradford to TE Jermaine Gresham all of a sudden had the Sooners leading the #1 team by two touchdowns.
Mizzou responded with a drive to get back in the game, but once again got bogged down in the red zone and was held to a field goal to make it 28-17 with 14:51 left in the game. But the Sooners scored the last 10 points of the game, and denied the Tiger offense anything the rest of the way to pull away.
Red zone efficiency was the difference in the game, as OU got there six times and scored five TDs, while the Tigers were held to three FGs in their four trips. PK Jeff Wolfert was his normal accurate self, converting from 28, 18 and 32 yards, but his three-pointers couldn't keep up with the efficient OU offense.
Wolfert's 28-yard FG with 3:19 left in the 1st quarter opened scoring after the teams traded defensive stops early on. Sooner RB Chris Brown had a pair of short TD runs in the 2nd quarter - sandwiched around an 18-yard Wolfert FG after the Tigers got to the OU 1-yardline and failed to punch it in - and Oklahoma held a 14-6 lead late in the 2nd quarter.
Daniel engineered a brilliant 10-play, 84-yard TD drive that he ended on his own with a 4-yard burst through the middle with just 14 seconds left before halftime, and a two-point conversion on a reverse pass from WR Jeremy Maclin to Rucker tied it up.
Oklahoma outgained Mizzou 375-to-317 on the night, and the Sooner defense held the normally potent Tiger offense to just 6-of-15 on 3rd downs. Mizzou had entered the game ranked 2nd in the NCAA in 3rd down conversions (55%).
SENIOR CLASS LOOKS TO EXTEND RECORD WIN TOTAL
Mizzou's class of 23 seniors has a lot left to play for in the 2008 season, but they've already established themselves as arguably the most successful class in MU history.
This class has been a very key group of players and leaders who have helped lead Mizzou to new heights. They have helped MU to 36 wins over the course of the 2005 season through now, and that represents a record for any four-year period of time (see chart below). This class has also now joined the 1981 senior class as the only other in Tiger history to play in four bowl games in a four-year span (Mizzou played in bowls each year from 1978-81, and has done so each of the last three years, as well).
Here's a look at the most prolific senior classes at Mizzou, in terms of wins (through games of Dec. 6th)...
MIZZOU-NORTHWESTERN SERIES HISTORY
Mizzou and Northwestern - two of the nation's most highly-regarded journalism schools - will square off for the 9th time when they meet Dec. 29th in the 2008 Valero Alamo Bowl. The meeting will be the first between the two schools since 1987, when Missouri claimed a 28-3 win in Columbia. The Wildcats won in Columbia two years prior to that, by a 27-23 count, and that most recent game before then was way back in 1967 (MU, 13-6 in Evanston).
The series stands dead even at four wins apiece, with the first meeting dating all the way back to 1895, when the Tigers claimed a 22-18 win in St. Louis over the Wildcats.
With only four of the games coming since the Associated Press rankings debuted in 1936, there's only one game between the two schools where one of the two was ranked, and that was back in 1963, when 7th-ranked Northwestern defeated Dan Devine's unranked Tigers, 23-12 in Columbia. Both teams were receiving votes in the return game of that brief two-game series, when the Tigers won in Evanston, 13-6 in 1967.
The 1985 game, won by Northwestern 27-23 in Columbia, was the very first game by new Tiger Head Coach Woody Widenhofer. That proved to be an ominous start to Woody's career, as the Tigers would go 1-10 that season, and Widenhofer would last only four years as MU's coach, ending with an overall record of 12-31-1.
TIGERS AGAINST THE BIG TEN CONFERENCE
Mizzou has played 101 games in its history against teams that currently comprise the Big Ten Conference, with the Tigers standing 42-55-4 alltime (.436). This year's bowl game matchup presents a rarity, however, as the Tigers have played a Big Ten foe only twice before in post-season play - and one of those was against Penn State in the 1970 Orange Bowl prior to the Nittany Lions joining the Big Ten (they joined in 1990).
- 1970 Orange -Penn State 10, Mizzou 3
- 1980 Liberty - Purdue 28, Mizzou 25
- QB Chase Daniel was named a National Football Foundation Scholar-Athlete (and is a winner of an $18,000 post-graduate scholarship). He was one of 16 finalists for the Draddy Award, which is known as the "Academic Heisman." Daniel was also an O'Brien Award semi-finalist, a Maxwell Award semi-finalist and a Lowe's Senior CLASS Award finalist. Additionally, he was named one of five finalists for the Manning Award as well as the Unitas Golden Arm Award and the Wuerffel Trophy...
- QB Chase Daniel has got 4,135 passing yards entering the bowl game, giving him 3,000 yards each of the last 3 seasons for MU (no Tiger QB had ever reached 3,000 passing yards prior to Daniel). His 37 TD passes in 2008 has broken his own MU season record of 33 achieved in 2007, and his season completion percentage of 74.0% and QB rating of 164.76 are far and away ahead of the MU season records of 68.2% (his own in 2007) and 154.3 (Phil Johnson in 1990), respectively...
- With 255 passing yards against Oklahoma last time out, Daniel upped his MU career-record yardage to 12,315. He now stands 11th on the NCAA Div. I-A (FBS) career passing yardage list. Next up on the list is #10 Kliff Kingsbury of Texas Tech (12,429). Daniel is averaging 318.1 passing yards per game in 2008, and if he hits that mark in the Alamo Bowl, he'd end with 12,633 yards, which would vault him to 8th place alltime...
- With 268 yards of total offense against Oklahoma, Daniel broke the MU career total offense record of 13,088 established by Brad Smith from 2002-05. Daniel, who has been a starter for only three seasons, has 13,256 career yards coming into the bowl game, which ranks him 7th alltime on the NCAA career charts. With a productive bowl game, Daniel could reach as high as #6, which is Phillip Rivers of North Carolina State, at 13,582 (2000-03)...
- Mackey Award winner TE Chase Coffman was not able to play against Kansas State and Iowa State, due to a sprained toe he suffered Nov. 1st against Baylor. He returned to play sparingly against Kansas, and his gutty performance was a reason why the Tigers came back from a 26-10 3rd-quarter deficit to nearly win the game, as he caught 2 TD passes on the day, and ended with 6 catches for 53 yards in all. He followed with 4 catches for 48 yards and 1 TD against Oklahoma, and extended his streak of having caught a pass to 42 consecutive games, which is an MU record, breaking the previous mark of 34 by WR Justin Gage (2000-02). Coffman, with 83 receptions so far in 2008, is approaching the MU single-season receptions mark for tight ends of 84, set just last season by TE Martin Rucker. The NCAA FBS single-season receptions record for a TE prior to this season is within view, too (90 by James Whelan of Kentucky in 1999). James Casey of Rice has already broken that in 2008, with 104 catches, but the 90 by Whelan of Kentucky stands as most by a TE from a BCS school...
- WR Jeremy Maclin, coming off a 7-catch, 46-yard, 1-TD receiving game against Oklahoma, pushed his season receiving TD total to 12, extending his own school season record. The old single-season record for receiving TDs was 10 prior to this season, set by WR Sean Coffey in 2004...
- Maclin's 2008 13-game all-purpose yardage total of 2,646 entering the bowl game is already the 2nd-most in MU single-season history, trailing only his own record of 2,776 set last year as a freshman. It is also just outside the NCAA single-season top-10 for Division I-A (FBS). If Maclin, who leads the nation with his per-game average of 203.5 all-purpose yards, hit that average in the Alamo Bowl, he'd end with 2,979 yards, which would rank #3 alltime on the NCAA single-season charts...
- If Maclin ends the season as the NCAA all-purpose champion, he will become the first Tiger to lead the nation in a statistical category since 1968, when former great Roger Wehrli led the nation in punt return yards (478). The only other Tigers to lead the NCAA in statistical categories include Hank Burnine in 1955 (most receptions - 44) and Bob Steuber in 1942 (most points - 121)...
- LB Brock Christopher has 321 career tackles entering the bowl game, and he stands 12th on the MU career tackles list. Christopher needs just 8 tackles to crack the top-10...
- Mizzou did not punt once recently against Iowa State, as it scored on 8 of its 10 possessions, and had the other two ended by turnovers committed deep in Cyclone territory. It was the second time this year MU did not punt (at Nebraska was the other time). Three other games this year (Nevada, Buffalo, at Baylor), MU has punted only once. Consequently, Mizzou ranks ranks 3rd in the NCAA in fewest punts, with 30 (averaging 41.3 per kick). Texas Tech leads the nation in fewest punts (22), while Tulsa is #2, with only 29, followed by #3 MU...
RECORDS WATCH CONTINUES
Several Tigers are closing in on some prominent season and career records in 2008. Here's a quick look:
- MOST TOTAL OFFENSE (SEASON) - Chase Daniel has 4,387 - CURRENT MARK is 4,559 by Chase Daniel in 2007...
- MOST PASSING YARDS (SEASON) - Chase Daniel has 4,135 - CURRENT MARK is 4,306 by Chase Daniel in 2007...
- MOST PATs ATTEMPTED & MADE (SEASON) - Jeff Wolfert is 70-of-70 - OLD MARK was 67-of-67 by Wolfert in 2007...
- MOST RECEPTIONS (SEASON) - Jeremy Maclin has 95 - OLD MARK was 84 by Martin Rucker (2007)...
- MOST RECEIVING YARDS (SEASON) - Jeremy Maclin has 1,221 - OLD MARK was 1,210 by Victor Bailey (1992)...
- MOST RECEIVING TOUCHDOWNS (SEASON) - Jeremy Maclin has 12 - OLD MARK was 10 by Sean Coffey (2004)...
- HIGHEST AVERAGE YARDS PER RUSH, SEASON (MIN. 150 ATT.) - Derrick Washington is averaging 6.1 (992 yards, 162 carries) - CURRENT MARK is 6.6 by Brad Smith in 2003...
- MOST RUSHING TOUCHDOWNS (SEASON) - Derrick Washington has 17 - CURRENT MARK is 18 by Brad Smith in 2003...
- MOST TOTAL TOUCHDOWNS SCORED (SEASON) - Derrick Washington has 19 (17 rushing, 2 receiving) - OLD MARK is 19 by Brad Smith in 2003 (18 rushing, 1 receiving)...
- MOST QB SACKS (SEASON) - Stryker Sulak has 8.5 - CURRENT MARK is 11 by Justin Smith in 2000...
- MOST POINTS SCORED (SEASON) - Jeff Wolfert has 121 - CURRENT MARK is 130 by Jeff Wolfert in 2007...
- MOST RECEIVING YARDS (CAREER) - Chase Coffman has 2,592 - CURRENT MARK is 2,704 by Justin Gage (1999-02)...
TIGERS NET BEST HOME ATTENDANCE SINCE 1980
Mizzou's great fans came out in record numbers in 2008 to Faurot Field/Memorial Stadium, where the Tigers played before sellout crowds of 68,349 for each of the last three games (against Oklahoma State, Colorado and Kansas State). That was the first time in recorded history that MU has had three consecutive sellouts.
The six-game home attendance average of 64,520 was the 5th-highest in MU history, and the most since 1980, when the Tigers averaged 67,602 in 6 games. Here's a quick rundown of the biggest average attendance for Mizzou home seasons...
If you like following the Tiger offense, you're best advised not to blink when they're on the field, because Mizzou strikes quickly when it's out there. MU is quickly disproving that winning the time of possession battle is the key to winning football - while Missouri is 6th the nation in total offense (497.46 ypg), they're doing it despite ranking 117th nationally in time of possession (26:15 average through 13 games).
In fact, in a survey of Div. I (FBS) SIDs, Mizzou is 5th in the country in most TD drives of under two minutes in length, with 32.
MU's recent win against Kansas State was an amazing sight, as all 5 of MU's TD drives were consummated in 1:07 or less!! Granted, 3 of the drives were short fields thanks to Tiger special teams and defense, but the other two drives went 84 yards in just 1:07 and 65 yards in 28 seconds. Here's a quick look at the TD drives against K-State...
Earlier in the 2008 season, Mizzou had 6 TD drives in this category against Nevada, while turning in 4 against Colorado, and adding 3 each against Iowa State, Nebraska, Buffalo and SEMO, 2 against Illinois and 1 each vs. Oklahoma State, Texas and Baylor.
JUST NINE THREE-AND-OUTS SO FAR FOR #1 OFFENSE
Mizzou's #1 offense, through its first 5 games in 2008, did not leave the field once having had to punt after a three-and-out possession, spanning 48 possessions through that stretch. After scoring a FG on their first series in game #6 against Oklahoma State, the streak ended at 49, as OSU forced the first 3-and-out of the season on MU's 2nd possession.
In 138 total possessions with QB Chase Daniel at the helm this season, the #1 offense has scored 78 times, including 63 TDs and 15 FGs. The non-scores have resulted in just 24 punts (only 9 after just three plays), 8 lost fumbles, 15 interceptions, 6 missed FGs, 1 safety and 4 lost on downs. Mizzou did not punt once against Iowa State and also did not punt once earlier in the year at Nebraska.
In an amazing two-game stretch spanning the Southeast Missouri State and Nevada games, Daniel led the offense to scores on all 13 possessions in which he took the field (12 TDs and 1 FG). In those two games combined, Daniel had more TD passes (7) than incomplete passes (6). After scoring a TD and a FG on the first two drives of the Buffalo game, that streak was upped to 15 straight scoring drives. It ended on possession #3 of that game, when the drive stalled after 5 plays and a punt.
COFFMAN IS NCAA'S MOST PROLIFIC PASS-CATCHING TIGHT END IN HISTORY
Mizzou's John Mackey Award winner TE Chase Coffman has won consensus 1st-Team All-American honors for his outstanding season that has included 83 catches for 920 yards and 10 TDs. He's put those numbers together despite missing two games in November, and playing each of the last two outings at less than 100%, due to a turf toe injury he sustained on Nov. 1st in a huge 2-TD day at Baylor.
Coffman has been named the 1st-Team All-American tight end by the Football Writers' Association of America (FWAA), the Walter Camp Football Foundation (WCFF) and the American Football Coaches' Association (AFCA), with those comprising three of the five NCAA-recognized All-American teams, that means no matter how the other two (Associated Press and The Sporting News, neither of which had been released prior to press time), Coffman will be the consensus 1st-Team tight end. That marks the 2nd straight year that Mizzou has claimed the consensus 1st-Team All-American tight end, as Martin Rucker was named on three of the five teams in 2007, as well.
Coffman caught 4 passes for 48 yards and 1 TD last time out against Oklahoma, despite being what he termed maybe 80% health-wise. Prior to that, he continued his All-American caliber play against Kansas, as he caught 6 passes for 53 yards and 2 key TDs that helped the Tigers crawl out of a big deficit to nearly win the game. Against the Jayhawks, Coffman caught a 5-yard TD pass in the 2nd quarter to get MU on the scoreboard after a scoreless 1st quarter, and his 6-yard TD with 6:52 in the game gave MU a 30-26 lead - the Tigers' first lead of the day after trailing at one time by a 26-10 count in the 3rd quarter.
In MU's win at Baylor, he caught a game-high 10 passes for 75 yards and 2 beautiful TD grabs that were definitely key plays in MU's 31-28 win in Waco, Texas.
Coffman's two TD grabs, from 3 yards and 13 yards out in the 1st quarter and 4th quarter, respectively, both were of the highlight reel variety, with both coming in the corner of the endzone against tight coverage where he made the catch in traffic, secured the ball and got his feet down. Both plays were reviewed after being ruled as TDs, but both stood after replay confirmed the calls. Coffman actually played much of the 2nd half with a sprained left big toe (turf toe) that was bothering him after the game enough to have X-rays performed (they came back negative). He was unable to play in the next two games, and was less than 100% for the last two games.
Coffman had yet another performance for the record books against Colorado, as he caught 7 passes for 50 yards and 1 TD (a ridiculous one-handed grab in the back of the end zone in the 1st quarter to make it 14-0 Tigers). While his numbers might not by eye-popping from the game, they certainly were historic in nature, as they gave him 220 career receptions, which makes him the NCAA's career record holder for all Div. I-A (FBS) tight ends.
The previous FBS record for catches by a tight end was 217, held by Louisville's Ibn Green (1996-99). Coffman entered the CU game with 213 grabs (already an MU record for all players), and he quickly went to work, tying Green's record by the end of the 1st quarter. The NCAA record-breaker came on a non-descript 4-yard reception from QB Chase Daniel in the 2nd quarter, but it was typical Coffman, as he made the grab in traffic on 3rd-and-1, and pushed the pile ahead for the first down that kept alive a drive that culminated in a TD to make it 28-0 Tigers.
Coffman now has 2,592 career receiving yards, which puts him in range of the MU career record of 2,704 by Justin Gage. He also holds MU's record for most receiving TDs (any position), with 30 entering the Alamo Bowl contest.
Prior to the CU game, Coffman turned in an All-American performance in MU's loss at #1 Texas. The senior from Peculiar, Mo. caught 12 passes for 140 yards and 1 TD, and was seen breaking tackles, hurdling defenders and making difficult catches in traffic all night long. The receptions and yards marked a career high for Coffman, who also made history with his 3rd catch, which gave him the MU career record of 204, surpassing the previous mark of 203 formerly held by TE Martin Rucker (2004-07).
Coffman caught 11 passes for 104 yards against Oklahoma State. One of those grabs included a spectacular catch on MU's opening drive where he leaped backwards near the left sideline to snare a ball out of the air with one hand and bring it in for the catch - all while the OSU covering him was being flagged for pass interference. The gain went for 21 yards and extended MU's drive that resulted in a short field goal for a 3-0 lead.
He now has four 100-yard outings in 11 games in 2008.
Coffman is the NCAA Division I-A (FBS) active career leader for tight ends in both receptions (240) and yards (2,592), and he ranks #6 on the list among all players. His career yardage total ranks 18th overall among all active players, and he is the only TE on the top 20 of both lists compiled by the NCAA.
For the 2008 season, Coffman ranks #3 among all tight ends in receptions (73), as well as 2nd in yards per game (91.00), and he is the clear leader among BCS school tight ends. His stats are enough to rank him 4th in the NCAA in receptions among all players, and he also ranks 16th nationally among all players in yardage.
||Alex Trlica, Texas Tech (2004-07)
||Jeff Wolfert, Mizzou (2006-08)
||John Becksvoort, Tennessee (1991-94)
||Luke Manget, Georgia Tech (1999-02)
||Van Tiffin, Alabama (1983-86)
||Damon Duval, Auburn (1999-02)
||Kyle Brotzman, Boise State (2007-08)
||Conner Lee, Pittsburgh (2006-08)
||David Browndyke, LSU (1986-89)
||Pete Stoyanovich, Indiana (1985-88)
WOLFERT BOOTS GAME-WINNER AT BAYLOR, REMAINS ON PACE FOR NCAA ACCURACY RECORD
Mizzou PK Jeff Wolfert has put up incredible numbers over three seasons of booting the ball, as he's made 238-of-250 (95.2%) combined kicks in 2006, 2007 and 2008. Those numbers break out to 56-of-68 (82.4%) on FGs and a perfect 182-of-182 on PATs (that's 100.0% for any non-math types out there).
In fact, Wolfert is on pace to break an NCAA career record for best accuracy for combined field goals and PATs. Wolfert's combined career mark of 95.2% is currently ahead of the record of 93.3% set by UCLA's John Lee from 1982-85 (116-of-117 PATs, 79-of-92 FGs). The minimum standard to qualify for this record is 50 career field goals.
Additionally, the NCAA record for best perfect PAT mark in a single season is 77-of-77, set in 2004 by Louisville's Art Carmody. Wolfert enters his final game as a Tiger with a season mark of 70-of-70 in 2008, putting him in range for the NCAA mark.
His accuracy helped play a huge role at Baylor, as he was crucial to MU's 31-28 win in Waco, Texas. Wolfert was perfect on all 4 PAT tries, but was called on for a 34-yard FG try with the game tied at 28-apiece with just over two minutes left. He drilled it, of course, accounting for the final score, as the Tiger defense forced a turnover on the ensuing Baylor possession to end the game.
Wolfert's kick was the first 4th-quarter game-winning FG for a Tiger kicker since 2005, when Adam Crossett booted a 26-yarder in OT to beat Iowa State in Columbia, 27-24.
Wolfert is one of only 10 Division I-A (FBS) kickers to be perfect with a minimum of 100 attempted PATs in a career, and he's 2nd on the list...
Much more on Wolfert's considerable exploits can be found elsewhere in the PDF edition of the game notes.
MACLIN BREAKS MIZZOU CAREER ALL-PURPOSE RECORD, LEADS NCAA
Mizzou's Mr. All-Everything WR/KR/PR Jeremy Maclin enters the bowl game against Northwestern as the NCAA leader in all-purpose yardage, with a nation-best 203.54 average per game. Oklahoma kept him in check, with 180 all-purpose yards, but he did break free to burn the OU defense for a scintillating 27-yard TD reception in the 2nd quarter that pulled the Tigers to within 10-7 at the time. Prior to that, his 3 game stretch from Nov. 8-29 was impressive, as he averaged 253.0 yards against Kansas State (278), at Iowa State (240) and versus Kansas (241).
Against the Jayhawks, Maclin did most of his damage on offense, as he had 123 receiving yards with 1 TD, on 9 receptions, while adding 32 yards on 3 rushes, while adding 86 yards on kickoff returns (4 tries).
Against Kansas State, he amassed a season-best 278 all-purpose yards, including 118 yards receiving (8 catches, 2 TDs) and 84 rushing yards (1 TD). It was the 7th-best single-game total in MU history, and gave him 638 all-purpose yards in 2 games against K-State (he set the MU single-game record with 360 at KSU in 2007).
Prior to that, Maclin had a 161-yard outing at Baylor where the Bear defense held him in check offensively, as he was held to 5 receptions for 31 yards (his lowest receiving total in 2008 since game #2 against SEMO, when he played just 1 quarter in a Tiger blowout win). But, Maclin contributed with 161 all-purpose yards overall, as he rushed 5 times for 26 yards and returned 5 kickoffs for 104 more yards.
One of those kickoff returns, his 2nd one in the 3rd quarter against Baylor, was historic in nature, as it pushed him past former Tiger great Brad Smith for the MU career record for most all-purpose yardage.
Maclin entered the game at Baylor with 4,322 career all-purpose yards, needing only 98 to pass Smith's mark of 4,419 from 2002-05. He now stands atop the chart with 5,422 entering the bowl game.
Much more information on Maclin can be found elsewhere in the PDF edition of the game notes.
DANIEL LEADS TIGERS TO 2ND STRAIGHT DIVISION TITLE
Mizzou senior QB Chase Daniel began the 2008 season on the short list of Heisman Trophy favorites, according to most prognosticators. Even though those preseason expectations won't be realized, Daniel has still put together an impressive season, and his leadership is a key reason why Mizzou has moved to the top of the heap in the Big 12 North, and finished just one win shy of reaching a first-ever BCS bowl game.
Through 13 games, Daniel has directed the Tigers to the nation's 6th-ranked outfit in total offense (497.46 ypg) and 6th-ranked scoring offense (43.15 ppg), while the Tigers rank 4th in the NCAA in passing (340.38 ypg) and 8th in pass efficiency (162.69 rating). Individually, he ranks 5th in the NCAA in total offense (337.46 ypg) and is 7th in pass efficiency (164.76 rating).
Facing a fierce pass rush by Oklahoma the last time out, Daniel was still able to complete 27-of-43 passes against the Sooners for 255 yards and 3 TDs. He was intercepted twice, with one of them coming off a deflected ball at the line of scrimmage.
Much more information on Daniel can be found elsewhere in the PDF edition of the game notes.
WILLY MO NABS RECORD-BREAKING INTERCEPTION AT IOWA STATE
The 2008 season has been a challenging one for senior FS William Moore, who came into the year with All-American aspirations after a huge 2007 season that saw him earn 2nd-Team All-American honors after notching 117 tackles and tying for the NCAA lead with 8 interceptions.
Moore got off to a good start, as he had 12 tackles in the season opener against Illinois, but he also suffered a sprained foot in the game, and that injury hampered him for a long time, as he missed two games and was not 100% until midway through the season.
Willy Mo made up for lost time in MU's recent outing against Iowa State, as he made one of the biggest plays of the game, grabbing his first interception of the season and returning it 17 yards for a TD to make it 21-0 Mizzou in the 2nd quarter. The play came just three plays after ISU had snuffed out a Tiger drive deep in Cyclone territory, and it helped keep momentum on MU's side of the ledger.
Just as significant was the fact that his pick-six was the 4th of his career, and that gave him the MU career record for interceptions returned for touchdown. He entered the season with 3 career pick-sixes, which had him tied with former great Erik McMillan (1984-87).
Moore has now returned an interception for a TD in each of his four seasons. He did the deed as a freshman against Iowa State (62 yards), then as a sophomore at Texas Tech (22 yards) and last year as a junior in the Cotton Bowl against Arkansas (26 yards). For his career, Moore has 11 interceptions, which ranks him 5th on the MU career chart.
The injury bug nabbed him again, unfortunately, in the week leading up to the Big 12 Championship Game, as he pulled cartilage in his ribcage during practice that was a very painful condition. He started the OU game, but had to come out after just one quarter due to the discomfort. His absence certainly hurt the Tiger defense in the 62-21 loss to the Sooners. Moore is expected to be ready to play in the Alamo Bowl.
For the season, Moore stands 4th on the Tiger team with 83 tackles, and he's added 5 pass break-ups, 5.5 tackles for loss and 2 forced fumbles to go with his one interception.
||# Seasons (Years)
||19 (1935-42, 46-56)
PINKEL STANDS 3RD ON ALLTIME MU COACHING WINS LIST
Mizzou Head Coach Gary Pinkel is in his 8th season at MU and touts a career record of 131-78-3 (62.5%). The Illinois game to open the 2008 season was the 200th in Pinkel's head coaching career.
Pinkel, who has led MU to a combined record of 49-27 (64.5%) over the past 5+ seasons, and to bowl games in 2003, 2005, 2006 and 2007, has an 8-year record in Columbia of 58-41 (58.6%). Dating back to the 2005 Independence Bowl win over Steve Spurrier and South Carolina, Pinkel has won 30 of his last 41 games overall.
MU's win in the 2008 opener against Illinois gave Pinkel his 50th MU win, and he now ranks 3rd on the coaching wins list at MU, with 58.
Pinkel is in a select group of Mizzou coaches that includes College Football Hall of Famers Don Faurot and Dan Devine, as well as Warren Powers, to be the only coaches to have an MU record of above .500 (with at least one full season coached) dating all the way back to 1935.
For the efforts in 2007, Pinkel was a finalist for several national coach of the year awards, including the Robinson, Bryant and Munger awards. He was also named the National Coach of the Year by FieldTurf in 2007.
Pinkel has led MU to 5 bowl games, and he has joined Devine (6 bowls), and Powers (5 bowls) as the only coaches to guide MU to 5 bowl games.
Pinkel has guided Mizzou to 5 winning seasons (8-5 in 2003, 7-5 in 2005, 8-5 in 2006, 12-2 in 2007, 9-4 in 2008), with those representing 5 of MU's 7 winning campaigns dating back to the 1983 season.
In November, Pinkel agreed to a new seven-year contract worth $2.3 million guaranteed per year, meaning he'll patrol the Tiger sidelines through the 2015 season.