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Missouri coach: ‘We’re going to get things fixed’
By BOB SCHALLER
For the Star-Herald
COLUMBIA, Mo. — When a team gives up 532 yards of total offense and gets just over 200 yards of its own, there’s work to be done.
“Next week we’re going to get things fixed,” promised first-year head coach Gary Pinkel. “We’re going to work harder and get committed. We have to make plays to win. Today, Nebraska made more.”
Lots more. Missouri found out its defense isn’t yet suited to the powerful Big 12 running attacks.
“We played good defense versus a great power offense,” Pinkel said.
Offensively, the Tigers had only one good quarter, the first one.
“They have as good of a defense as there is in the country,” Pinkel said. “Are we going to change things? No. We’re going to make sure we execute on offense.”
That might involve more of Kirk Farmer.
“Early, he did good things,” Pinkel said. “He’s rusty — very rusty. He’s only practiced 10 days all year. He threw better in the beginning. Then later, Nebraska wears on you. We have problems with the offense right now. You have to throw for every yard so we went with the short passing game to get the yards that we would have (otherwise) run for. Our execution really dropped in the second half.”
The strong start gave Missouri confidence.
“We started off strong,” said junior wide receiver Justin Gage, who had three catches for 46 yards. “We were moving the ball up and down the field…doing a lot of the things we wanted to do. As the game went on, we got away from that. We started trying to go our own way instead of doing what we’re supposed to do. We were making mistakes left and right. We were just doing things we should not have done.”
Missouri’s senior linebacker Jamonte Robinson had a different theory.
“Nebraska just out-competed us,” Robinson said. “We didn’t play bad. We just didn’t play good enough to win.”
Senior offensive lineman Justin Bland saw things similarly.
“We just really got outplayed,” Bland said. “We had a good game plan going in. Everybody was really excited. We just got outplayed.”