Following a devastating season opening loss to Wyoming, Mizzou rebounded with a dominant 28-7 win over West Virginia in front of 51,000 fans in Columbia.
The Tigers utilized a rejuvenated ground attack and efficient passing from Kelly Bryant to dispatch of the overmatched Mountaineers. Bryant’s 3 first half touchdown passes helped establish a 31-0 lead that basically signaled the end for West Virginia, a team that has a massive rebuild ahead.
5 takeaways from Mizzou’s dominant win over West Virginia
- This is much closer to the team we thought we would see. As bad as the Tigers were last week, they were equally as good this week. The same team that couldn’t stop the run against Wyoming gave up an astonishing 15 yards on the ground. While the running game also struggled a week ago, Larry Roundtree seemed back to his old, steady ways on Saturday gaining 99 yards and scoring a TD. Kelly Bryant has also been tremendous (aside from the poor turnovers last week) and his athleticism bought time for him to make big plays in the passing game. We haven’t seen Bryant bust out in the running game yet but that could be yet another element that showcases his abilities.
- The stadium experience/south end zone is pretty great. The south end zone project was on full display for the first time Saturday and it received rave reviews from fans and media members. It is so grandiose, in fact, that it was difficult for many media to find the post-game press conference located on the second floor of the facility. Over 51,000 fans attended the game, which is an acceptable but not great number. Many fans enjoyed alcohol at at Missouri game for the first time ever and lines seemed to run smoothly for this process.
- Nick Bolton can play. After a rough week 1 against Wyoming, Nick Bolton became the SEC defensive player of the week after intercepting two passes on Saturday. Many were concerned with the loss of incumbent linebacker Terez Hall but Bolton was mentored by Hall and seems to be on the fast track to being a tremendous player for the Tigers.
- Barry Odom seemed quietly optimistic in his post game presser. “We’re not going to be defined by one game.” Odom stated. “We’re defined by how we respond from every opportunity that we get.” Odom evened his personal record at Mizzou after Saturday’s win at 20-20. He has lost some mind-blowing games here in just over three years but is also building a culture of program solidarity.
- This game is the beginning of a massive trust rebuild with the fanbase. Missouri came out and took care of business against a bad team but it doesn’t erase what happened in Laramie, Wyoming last weekend. You don’t find out that your girlfriend has been talking to fifteen other guys and then start trusting her again a week later when she tells you she won’t do that anymore. It’s going to take several weeks to get the Mizzou fanbase back on board for this season and understandably so.