Opening the Flood Gates
Alabama shows Mizzou why it’s the cream of the crop.
As clouds gathered around Memorial Stadium before the Tigers date with No. 1 Alabama Oct. 13, 2012, Mizzou faithful maintained hope that the severe thunderstorms might stay away and the home team would pull off a monumental upset.
Then the heavens, and Alabama’s offense, opened up.
The Crimson Tide (6-0, 3-0 SEC) scored on its second play from scrimmage — a 73-yard touchdown run by Eddie Lacy, one of three on the day for the running back — and the defending national champions never looked back in a 42-10 victory.
After a 38-minute lightning delay, the Tigers scored their lone touchdown on a 98-yard kickoff return by sophomore special teams dynamo Marcus Murphy to make it 28-7 with 8:24 to play in the second quarter. It was Murphy’s single-season, school-record-setting fourth return for a touchdown this season, the other three coming via punt.
Alabama’s running back tandem of Lacy and T.J. Yeldon combined for 321 yards and five touchdowns, while the Tide defense held Missouri (3-4, 0-4 SEC) to a mere 129 yards.
“That is maybe the best football team I have ever seen,” says Mizzou Coach Gary Pinkel. “I watched a lot of film last week. Time will tell, but they don’t have a weakness.”
Alabama wasn’t flawless, however. Mizzou junior defensive end Michael Sam forced a fumble recovered by his teammate, freshman defensive end Shane Ray. The Tigers later added a 41-yard field goal by freshman kicker Andrew Baggett to make it 28-10 with 3:03 left in the third quarter, but Bama’s pair of unanswered fourth-quarter touchdowns put the game out of reach.
Still searching for Mizzou’s first conference win in its inaugural SEC season, the Tigers head into a bye week before an Oct. 27 Homecoming matchup with Kentucky.
“We kept our defense on the field too long at the end,” Pinkel says. “The lesson’s learned, and it’s a good time to get a break. I’m looking forward to trying to get this football team better.”