Missouri Football Three Keys: SE Missouri St

Three keys Missouri

Missouri faces SE Missouri St on Saturday in Columbia, MO. Here are your three keys to a Missouri win over SE Missouri St.

By Matt Zemek

The Missouri Tigers did get back on track to a certain degree in their romp over West Virginia this past week, but one has to ask some basic questions about the extent to which Missouri truly fixed its problems. Against Southeast Missouri State, it would be unrealistic to expect Mizzou to truly answer all of these important questions about its identity in the 2019 season, but the Tigers can at least begin to make progress in the right direction and ensure that they will be more prepared for when the SEC season begins later this month.

Key 1 – Get Kelly Bryant going

Missouri did not have to throw the ball a lot against West Virginia. Kelly Bryant threw for only 150 yards. The Tigers were so dominant in various other facets of play that they didn’t need much from their passing game. The bottom line for Missouri in a weak and uncertain SEC East is that a team which can consistently and reliably throw the ball for big downfield gains can leapfrog over the other teams in the division (other than Georgia). Remember that Missouri whacked Florida in the Swamp last year. The idea that Missouri should automatically be placed behind Florida in the SEC East pecking order is a reasonable one, but it is also very premature and has hardly been proved in any conclusive way. We don’t know how good Florida is just yet. The Gators have to EARN their status as the SEC East’s second-best team behind Georgia. Missouri CAN be that second-best team, and the Tigers will become that team if Kelly Bryant can throw well down the field, from the start of games to the end. This is a game in which – following the low-output West Virginia contest – Bryant needs to develop a rhythm and a more obvious sense of continuity with his receivers on downfield routes. This is a time to develop muscle memory and timing with his receivers on vertical plays, which is exactly what Mizzou will need later in the season to compensate for deficiencies in other areas and rescue games which are on the verge of slipping away.

Key 2 – Four full quarters

The West Virginia team Missouri handled easily in Week 2 is in rebuilding mode. Given that reality, Missouri’s offense did not achieve everything it could have achieved versus the Mountaineers. The Tigers, who have shown flashes of potency this season but have not played a complete game, need to unleash their offense for four full quarters and gain the heightened expectations which emerge from playing a complete 60-minute game.

Key 3 – Defensive vigilance

Except for one 27-point quarter against Wyoming, this defense has been very good in 2019. The memory of that 27-point quarter needs to become a constant point of awareness this season for Mizzou’s defense. Slight lapses of focus can get punished. The West Virginia game reduced those lapses. They need to continue to be weeded out in Week 3.

Saturday‘s game kicks off at 6:30 PM CT (7:30 PM ET). Watch on the SEC Network.

This Week’s SEC Football News and Analysis

GameFirst Looks3 Keys
Game
Preview
HighlightsFinal Stats
Kansas State vs. Mississippi StateKSUMSUPreviewKSU 31, MSU 24Stats
Colorado State vs. ArkansasCSUArkyPreviewArkansas 55, CSU 34Stats
Northwestern St vs. LSUNWSULSUPreviewLSU 65, NWSU 14Stats
Florida vs. KentuckyFLA / UKUK / FLAPreviewFlorida 29, UK 21Stats
Kent State vs. AuburnKent St.AuburnPreviewAuburn 55, Kent St. 16Stats
Alabama vs. South CarolinaUSC / BamaBama / USCPreviewBama 47, USC 23Stats
SE Missouri St vs. MissouriSEMOMizzouPreviewMizzou 50, SEMO 0Stats
Lamar vs. Texas A&MLamarTexas A&MPreviewTAMU 62, Lamar 3Stats
Arkansas St. vs. GeorgiaArk. StateUGAPreviewUGA 55, ASU 0Stats
Chattanooga vs. TennesseeUTCTennesseePreviewTennessee 45, UTC 0Stats
SE Louisiana vs. Ole MissSE LouisianaOle MissPreviewOle Miss 40, SELA 29Stats
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