|Top 25 Overview|
Norman, OK - 6:30 PM ET
Missouri faces its stiffest test of the season when it heads to Norman to take on Oklahoma. Under coach Gary Pinkel the Tigers have had their troubles against ranked teams, going 2-15 in his seven years at the school. The Sooners have 16 of the last 17 games against Missouri.
|Complete Top 25 Overview|
|Missouri boasts an explosive offense, but the Tigers' defense leaves much to be desired. Oklahoma QB sam Bradford is young, but he should be able to pick Missouri apart.|
|Complete Scouts Inc. Preview|
|· Complete Standings|
|Record When Scoring... (Since 2001)|
| ||20 OR MORE||30 OR MORE||40 OR MORE||50 OR MORE|
| ||LESS THAN 20||LESS THAN 30||LESS THAN 40||LESS THAN 50|
|TEAM AVERAGES & NCAA RANKS|
|OFFENSE||TM||PER GAME AVERAGE / NCAA RANK|
567.0 / 4th
487.3 / 13th
368.0 / 5th
271.2 / 38th
199.0 / 26th
216.2 / 15th
41.8 / 11th
49.3 / 3rd
|Full Team Stats: Missouri | Oklahoma|
Missouri passed one big test last weekend. To prove it belongs among the Big 12's elite teams, the 11th-ranked Tigers need to come up with another landmark victory.
Missouri visits No. 6 Oklahoma on Saturday in a possible Big 12 championship game preview.
Both teams maintained their title hopes with big victories last weekend. After a shocking 27-24 upset loss to Colorado on Sept. 29, the Sooners responded with a 28-21 victory over arch-rival and then-No. 19 Texas in Dallas last Saturday.
Missouri (5-0, 1-0) finally prevailed against a ranked team, pounding then-No. 25 Nebraska 41-6 at home to preserve its unbeaten start. The Tigers are 5-0 for the second straight season and have obtained their highest ranking since 1981, when they rose as high as No. 8 in the nation.
But to prove they're not a fluke, the Tigers need to assert themselves against the higher-ranked Sooners (5-1, 1-1).
"It's the biggest game we've had here," Missouri quarterback Chase Daniel said. "It's a big game because it's the next game. As I said last week, we're not approaching it like a do-or-die, it's your life, you better win, if you don't win, you're going to be fired. It's a football game, just go out there, have fun, play hard, do what you can and move the football."
The Tigers are used to getting out to a good start. But they've had trouble finishing seasons strong, particularly when facing ranked opponents. Missouri started 6-0 last season, but ended up 8-5. The Tigers have opened 4-1 or better in three of the past four seasons, but have failed to exceed eight wins.
Missouri's record against ranked foes is even worse. Coach Gary Pinkel is just 2-15 against teams in the AP Top 25 -- including 0-6 on the road -- in his seven years at Missouri, with both wins against Nebraska. The Tigers have lost 13 straight road games to ranked opponents.
This team may be strong enough to end that streak. Quarterback Chase Daniel has entered the Heisman Trophy conversation after throwing for 401 yards and two touchdowns against the Cornhuskers and rushing for another 72 yards and two scores, earning him Big 12 player of the week honors. He's third nationally in total offense, averaging 380 yards per game.
The Tigers had 606 yards of total offense while holding Nebraska to just 297 yards and only two field goals, the first time since 1958 that the Cornhuskers failed to score a touchdown against Missouri.
"We talked about it at the beginning of the year, that if you want to make a move you've got to win some big games and beat some of the best teams," Pinkel said. "This was one. This was a test, we passed this.
"The bad news is we've got to wake up and start preparing for Oklahoma."
The Tigers may be without leading rusher Tony Temple, who has 351 yards this season but is likely to be a gametime decision due to a sprained ankle.
After the loss to Colorado, the Sooners rebounded nicely against the Longhorns. Quarterback Sam Bradford threw for 244 yards, three touchdowns and no interceptions, bouncing back after a poor performance against the Buffaloes.
"He did a great job out there, the way he presented himself," junior wide receiver Juaquin Iglesias said. "I know my first OU-Texas game, I didn't act nearly as he did. It was going too fast for me out there.
"He stood in the pocket for us, he made a lot of plays for us and he's been doing what he's been doing since he started."
Bradford leads the nation with a 187.03 passer rating. The redshirt freshman has thrown 18 touchdown passes to only four interceptions.
The Sooners have outscored the Tigers 128-47 to win the last four meetings in the series, but know they can't afford to look past this Missouri team.
"I just don't get the hangover deal. There isn't anyone in here walking around like we've done something," Oklahoma coach Bob Stoops said. "In the end, what does beating Texas do? It doesn't do anything. We're in the middle of the season, we've only played half of it.
"We're used to competing to win championships here, so you're not going to get a lot of pats on the back around here for not doing that. And the only way to do that is to win this week and keep doing it."
Sooners tailback Allen Patrick is expected to play after missing much of the second half last week against Texas. Stoops said the senior wasn't seriously injured, just suffering from cramps. Patrick had 157 rushing yards in a 26-10 victory over Missouri last season.
Oklahoma has won 16 of the last 17 games between these schools. Missouri?s only win during that time came in 1998, the year before Stoops was hired.