You never know when they’re going to explode. You never know when they’re going to figure things out and simplify things or maybe take more off the quarterback’s shoulders. —BYU inside linebackers coach Paul Tidwell
KANSAS CITY — Before scoring a touchdown against Mississippi State last week, Missouri had gone 15 quarters without getting into the end zone.
The Tigers have scored only 25 points in four straight losses to Florida, Georgia, Vanderbilt and Mississippi State.
And that’s what makes BYU inside linebackers coach Paul Tidwell nervous as the Cougars face Mizzou.
“You never know when they’re going to explode. You never know when they’re going to figure things out and simplify things or maybe take more off the quarterback’s shoulders,” Tidwell said. “You never know when an offense or defense is going to show up and have a fantastic game. That’s why we have to prepare for every game like it’s going to be a bloodbath. We can’t go into it looking at Missouri saying, ‘They’re only scoring this many points a game.’ Or ‘The quarterback struggles with this.’ We have to look at it as what we have to do.”
Mizzou is ranked last (out of 128 teams) in the nation in scoring (14.7 points per game), No. 126 in total offense, No. 119 in rushing offense, No. 118 in passing efficiency and No. 112 in passing offense.
Freshman quarterback Drew Lock has completed 88 of 178 passes for 870 yards with three touchdowns and five interceptions.
“The quarterback, when you watch film, throws a lot of deep balls. Not a lot of them have been completed,” Tidwell said. “You hope that this game they don’t complete a lot of those deep balls. If they get better at it and work at it all week and make an emphasis of it, we’d better be on our game because they might complete some deep balls.”
“They’re full of athletes and speed. The line is really big,” said BYU safety Michael Wadsworth of the Missouri offense. “We’re going to have to make sure we do a good job in the secondary and make sure everything stays in front of us and that we don’t get beat deep.”
“They are very skilled and the schemes are good and they have a veteran offensive line — four seniors,” said coach Bronco Mendenhall. “Some tough running backs. It’s just a matter of consistency of them throwing and catching the ball. On any given play, the scheme, the personnel and the ability are certainly there.”
NOVEMBER SCHEDULING: The Cougars are gradually improving their November schedules.
“We’ve worked really hard through independence to put together a compelling, season-long schedule. Based on the year, certainly it can play out like that or it might not based on how the teams come and go. That’s our intent. I think everyone has seen that. Based on our game last week, it started that way. To play an SEC opponent on the SEC Network in Arrowhead Stadium with a coach and program as Missouri, that’s a great thing for our program. I think we’re making progress in terms of strength of schedule. That’s been acknowledged from anyone that’s paid attention on the national scene. As we’ve already announced for next year, it will continue.”
TIGHT END SIGHTING: BYU saw its first completion to a true tight end last Friday against San Jose State. Senior Remington Peck, a defensive lineman that is now playing tight end, caught an 18-yard pass in the second quarter. It was his first reception since he was a senior at Bingham High seven years ago.
“Rem’s awesome,” said quarterback Tanner Mangum. “He did a great job, not only catching that pass, but blocking as well. We’re excited to have him on the offensive side of the ball. He’s going to help us out a lot.”