From The Couch – Well, That Sucked

From The Couch – Well, That Sucked

Sorry, everyone. It took me a couple of days to get over this loss. Missouri beat K-State 30-27 on Saturday on a 61-yard field goal as time expired. I was there to witness it in person. It was a great back and forth game with lots of drama and excitement. There were many big plays by both teams as well as lots of blunders.

There’s a lot to dissect in this game, so let’s get to it. Be prepared for an airing of grievances!

K-State took the opening kickoff right down the field for a touchdown in just over four minutes. It looked like Will Howard scored two plays before the touchdown on a quarterback sweep keeper, but the touchdown was called back due to a hold. The Wildcats ended up scoring on a tipped pass to Ben Sinnott that was caught by Phillip Brooks for the touchdown….

JM: The ease in which the K-State offense scored on the opening possession, I thought the rout was on. Oh how wrong I was.

JM: Burden got behind the K-State secondary for a 47-yard touchdown on Missouri’s first drive of the game. I was concerned about Burden going into the game and rightfully so. How the K-State secondary let him run right past them on that first touchdown I’ll never know.

Will Howard threw a bad interception on K-State’s next possession and Missouri took over in great field position. They moved the ball down to the K-State 13-yard line, but the Wildcat defense held them to a field goal that put Missouri up 10-7. Howard could have had two interceptions in the game at this point. The deflected pass to Brooks on K-State’s first touchdown could have easily been picked off as well.

K-State received the ball and went three and out and had to punt. On Missouri’s ensuing possession, they drove 29 yards but were forced into a field goal attempt. Tiger kicker Harrison Mevis missed a 54-yarder to the left of the goal post. It is kind of ironic that after missing this one he would make a 61-yarder to win the game.

K-State took advantage of the Missouri missed field goal and drove 64 yards in 10 plays, capped off by this three-yard touchdown pass from Will Howard to Ben Sinnott to take a 14-10 lead in the game….

After they received the kickoff, it took Missouri two long pass plays to get down to the K-State six-yard line. They capped off the 6-play, 75-yard drive with a touchdown tun by quarterback Brady Cook to regain the lead, 17-14…

The Tigers went into halftime holding onto the 17-14 lead. Will Howard didn’t have a great half passing the ball. He could have had four interceptions in the half, but only had one. The other three were deflected and/or dropped by Missouri defenders.

K-State’s defense tightened up in the third quarter and the offense got things going again, scoring on a 46-yard field goal from Chris Tennant and this 3-yard jump pass touchdown from Will Howard to Ben Sinnott, his second touchdown catch of the game. K-State led 24-17 after this touchdown…

This was a strange drive, as K-State scored touchdowns on three plays. Two were called back because of penalties. But they still punched it in, so I can’t complain too much.

Freshman quarterback Avery Johnson got on the field in the second half but never threw a pass. He had four rushes for 24 yards. In my opinion, he should have been on the field even more than he was.
Missouri answered K-State’s touchdown drive by driving 68 yards in six plays and kicking a field goal to cut the lead to 24-20.

K-State was forced to punt on their next drive, giving the ball back to Missouri. K-State’s defense held the Tigers to a punt. The Wildcats couldn’t do anything on their next possession on what may have been the worst play-calling I’ve seen thus far this season.

Up 24-20 with 10:46 left in the game, DJ Giddens ran up the middle for three yards on first down. On second and seven, Howard tossed to Giddens on a sweep play and he ran for five yards. On third and two, Howard threw a screen pass to Ben Sinnott two yards behind the line of scrimmage. Sinnott was blanketed by his defender and he dropped the pass. It didn’t matter that he dropped it because he would have been tackled two yards short of the first down.

What happened to the aggressive play calling that Collin Klein has promised? This was head-scratching and WAY too conservative play-calling by Klein. The Wildcats were forced to punt from their 42-yard line. Had they been aggressive and scored a touchdown on that drive, they would have won the game. A 31-20 deficit for Missouri late in the fourth quarter would have been too much for them to overcome. Instead, Missouri got the ball back and what did they do? Two plays for 77 yards and a 26-yard touchdown pass from Cook to Luther Burden to go ahead 27-24. MADDENING!!!!

K-State opened things up offensively on their next drive. They marched down the field and eventually had a first and goal from the Missouri nine-yard line. On third and goal from the three, K-State got a delay of game penalty. Howard was pressured on third and goal from the eight and threw a pass into the ground so the Wildcats were forced to kick a field goal to tie the game.

K-State’s defense did its job again, forcing Missouri to a three-and-out. The Wildcats got the ball back at their own 39 with 3:46 left in the game. The game was tied at 27. Three runs in a row, by Howard, Johnson, and Treshaun Ward, respectively, produced a first down at the 50-yard line with about two minutes left. Will Howard was noticeably limping around at this point. Since I was at the game, I never saw the play where he was injured and when I re-watched the game, the announcers never seemed to know how he was injured, either. But they did notice the limp.

On first down, Howard threw to Ben Sinnott around the 35-yard line. This was a bullet and a pass that was behind Sinnott. Had it been completed, K-State likely would have won the game with a field goal. On second and 10, a false start on K-State. On second and 15, Howard didn’t have an open receiver and had to throw it out of bounds. On third and 15, Howard threw a short one-yard pass to Ward and K-State had to punt. Missouri got the ball back on their own 18 with 1:25 left.

The Tigers drove 38 yards in 10 plays and Harrison Mevis kicked the game-winning 61-yard field goal. I didn’t think he was going to make it. In fact, I never thought K-State was going to lose this game until that field goal went through the uprights.

The good thing is that the loss to Missouri was a non-conference game. The loss didn’t affect winning the Big 12 whatsoever. However, I have questions about whether this team is a contender or a pretender. Is Will Howard injured? Is Daniel Green out for the remainder of the season with an injury? We don’t know the answers to these questions yet, and with conference play starting this Saturday at 7:00 against UCF, let’s hope K-State can rebound in a big way and get the win in their first conference game of 2023.

Another picture that I took from our seats

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