Craig's Corner: Experiencing SEC Football - The Missourian: Sports

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Craig's Corner: Experiencing SEC Football

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Posted: Thursday, September 13, 2012 6:00 am | Updated: 8:31 am, Thu Sep 13, 2012.

As you know by now, the Missouri Tigers played their first-ever SEC football game last Saturday, losing at Faurot Field to Georgia, 41-20.

After a late Friday night of high school football, I made the trip to Columbia Saturday to experience some of the pregame festivities and to take in my first SEC football contest.

There’s a lot to talk about, both on and off the field.

Coming into the game, my two biggest concerns for the Tigers were their running game on offense and just their overall defense and how they would stop Georgia quarterback Aaron Murray, who is arguably the best signal-caller in the SEC.

Missouri’s defense surprised me with how well it played, especially in the first half.

The Tigers put pressure on Murray, stopped the run and forced a turnover or two.

Mizzou held a 10-9 lead at halftime.

Defensive tackle Sheldon Richardson, who referred to Georgia’s game as “old man football,” actually backed up his words and played well.

By the way, Richardson apologized to Georgia Coach Mark Richt after the game about his remarks.

Things changed for the MU defense in the second half.

I believe the MU defense just ran out of gas from the emotional start and all the success in the first half.

While linebacker Zaviar Gooden’s injury is a concern, I am encouraged by the defense for the remainder of the season.

My concern for Mizzou’s rushing game turned out to be on the money.

There was no running game to speak of. MU rushed for 102 yards on 39 attempts for a 2.6 average.

That’s not going to get it done.

Yes, the offensive line is beat up, but either you have to really work hard on getting guys like Kendial Lawrence and Marcus Murphy going, or just throw the darn running game out the window and let quarterback James Franklin either throw or run every time.

Speaking of Franklin, he didn’t have the greatest night. He missed some open receivers. He’ll get better.

I don’t want to be mean, but the offensive line actually played better after left tackle Elvis Fisher left the game with an injury. Franklin was getting punished while Fisher was in the game.

Georgia linebacker Jarvis Jones abused the Tigers. If there’s a better defensive player in the country, I’d like to see him.

The Bulldogs played without four suspended defensive starters. MU’s offense should have been better. Welcome to the SEC.

After two games, it’s time to get freshman receiver Dorial Green-Beckham, the nation’s No. 1 recruit last year, more involved. He had one catch for five yards against Georgia.

Another tremendous concern is the kicking game. Not sure if Andrew Baggett is the answer.

Look, Georgia was the preseason favorite to win the SEC East and currently is a top 10 team in the country.

Not every SEC game will be this tough, but none will be easy.

And what about Missouri’s uniforms? I guess once a year to go crazy is fine, but let’s not get too flashy. This isn’t Oregon. Let’s just play football.

It was a great atmosphere inside and outside of the stadium.

There were a ton of Georgia fans in Columbia.

I would say there were probably 10,000 Georgia fans actually inside the stadium for the game, but I bet there were another 20,000 fans who did not have tickets, but still made the trip.

That gives you an idea of just how huge SEC football really is in states like Georgia, Alabama, Louisiana, South Carolina, Arkansas, Tennessee, Mississippi and Florida.

The interaction between the two fan bases was very friendly. I didn’t see any problems at all. I think the two sides were more less just feeling each other out.

As a matter of fact, there were published reports that came out Sunday that Georgia fans were complaining that Mizzou fans were too nice.

As time goes on, the hatred will build.

A lot of MU fans were cheering that Kansas lost to Rice. That mindset needs to change. The Jayhawks are old news. We should’ve been cheering that Arkansas lost to Louisiana-Monroe.

It will take time to switch from Big 12 to SEC mode.

Can you imagine? There were 20,000 Georgia fans who made the trip to Columbia even though they did not have tickets to the game. They just set up shop outside of the stadium and made a weekend party out of it—eating, drinking and watching the game on television.

As a Missouri fan, would you drive to Athens, Ga., without a ticket to the game and watch it on TV outside of the stadium? I wouldn’t either.

Wait until Alabama visits Columbia Oct. 13. It will be pure madness.

It’s going to take everyone involved with Mizzou Nation, players, coaches and fans, a little time to get used to this SEC thing.

/

Area Scoreboard

Football

Friday, Sept. 12

*Ft. Zumwalt North 49, Washington 0

*Borgia 35, St. Dominic 0

*Union 27, Pacific 19

*Sullivan 47, St. Clair 21

Hermann 65, Wentzville Liberty 7

*Owensville 29, St. James 28 (OT)

Cuba 22, Windsor 6

*Warrenton 14, St. Charles 6

*Bowling Green 55, Wright City 0

Friday, Sept. 5

Warrenton 14, Washington 6

Borgia 13, Maplewood-Richmond Heights 0 (forfeit)

*Union 32, Sullivan 19

*Pacific 20, St. Clair 18

*Hermann 52, St. James 20

Owensville 35, Cuba 8

*Wright City 36, Montgomery Co. 0

Friday, Aug. 29

Sullivan 30, Washington 8

Borgia 56, Union 13

Ozark 41, St. Clair 0

Potosi 34, Pacific 13

Hermann 54, Cuba 12

Blair Oaks 42, Owensville 0

St. James 36, Houston 18

Warrenton 28, Troy 0

Orchard Farm 36, Wright City 18

Friday, Aug. 22

Washington 26, St. Clair 21

Borgia 48, Owensville 12

Parkway West 49, Union 39

Pacific 28, De Soto 20

Park Hills Central 34, Sullivan 27

St. James 12, Cuba 6

Hermann 61, Montgomery Co 12

Warrenton 26, St. Dominic 23

Trinity 28, Wright City 24

Softball

Monday, Sept. 8

O’Fallon Christian at Borgia    4:30 p.m.

St. Clair at Windsor    4:30 p.m.

Hermann at Van-Far    4:30 p.m.

*Union at New Haven, 4:30 p.m.

Tuesday, Sept. 9

*Washington at Ft. Zumwalt E    4:30 p.m.

*St. James at Union    4:30 p.m.

*St. Clair at Hermann    4:30 p.m.

*Pacific at Owensville    4:30 p.m.

*New Haven at Sullivan    4:30 p.m.

Wednesday, Sept. 10

Borgia at Trinity    4:30 p.m.

Thursday, Sept. 11

*Washington at Ft. Zumwalt S    4:30 p.m.

*Union at St. Clair    4:30 p.m.

*Sullivan at Pacific    4:30 p.m.

*New Haven at St. James    4:30 p.m.

*Owensville at Hermann    4:30 p.m.

Friday, Sept. 12

Washington at Howell C Tny    TBA

Saturday, Sept. 13

Cuba Tournament    TBA

Washington at Howell C Tny    TBA

Pacific at Seckman Tny    TBA

Monday, Sept. 15

Silex at Union    4:30 p.m.

Potosi at St. Clair    4:30 p.m.

Wellsville at Hermann    4:30 p.m.

Newburg at Owensville    5 p.m.

Tuesday, Sept. 16

*Borgia at Notre Dame    4:30 p.m.

*Washington at Ft. Zumwalt N    4:30 p.m.

*Union at Owensville    4:30 p.m.

*Pacific at New Haven    4:30 p.m.

*St. James at St. Clair    4:30 p.m.

*Hermann at Sullivan    4:30 p.m.

Volleyball

Saturday, Sept. 6

Borgia Tournament

Blue Pool

Parkway West def. Hickman, 25-8, 25-12

Borgia def. Washington, 25-6, 25-15

Parkway West def. Washington, 25-19, 25-16

Borgia def. Hickman, 25-21, 25-10

Washington def. Hickman, 25-19, 25-11

Parkway West tied Borgia, 25-15, 22-25

Gold Pool

St. Dominic def. Francis Howell North, 25-14, 25-16

Lutheran South tied Jefferson City, 25-9, 22-25

St. Dominic def. Jefferson City, 25-7, 26-24

Lutheran South tied Francis Howell North, 24-26, 25-18

Jefferson City def. Francis Howell North, 25-9, 25-17

St. Dominic tied Lutheran South, 25-20, 22-25

Seventh Place - Francis Howell North def. Hickman, 25-15, 25-23

Fifth Place - Jefferson City def. Washington, 25-12, 25-20

Semifinal 1 - Lutheran South def. Parkway West, 25-22, 25-20

Semifinal 2 - Borgia def. St. Dominic, 26-24, 23-25, 25-22

Third Place - Parkway West def. St. Dominic, 25-17, 25-9

Championship - Borgia def. Lutheran South, 25-20, 23-25, 25-15

Owensville at Fulton Tny    8:30 a.m.

#ECC vs. Independence    9 a.m.

#ECC vs. Southeast    1 p.m.

St. Clair, Pacific, Sullivan at North County Tny    TBA

Monday, Sept. 8

Warrenton at St. Clair    4:30 p.m.

Fox at Pacific    5:30 p.m.

Hillsboro at Sullivan    5:30 p.m.

Tolton at New Haven    6 p.m.

Tuesday, Sept. 9

Pacific at Rockwood Summit    4:15 p.m.

Crosspoint at Rivers of Life    5 p.m.

Washington at Owensville    5:30 p.m.

Montgomery Co at Union    5:30 p.m.

Rock Bridge at Hermann    5:30 p.m.

Sullivan at Belle    5:30 p.m.

St. Clair at Kingston    6 p.m.

Crosspoint vs. Community Christian    6 p.m.

*Duchesne at Borgia    6:30 p.m.

Wednesday, Sept. 10

*ECC at Mineral Area    6:30 p.m.

Thursday, Sept. 11

Cuba at St. Clair    4:30 p.m.

*Holt at Washington    5 p.m.

New Haven at Centralia    5 p.m.

Park Hills Central at Sullivan    5:30 p.m.

Owensville at Fatima    5:30 p.m.

*Rosati-Kain at Borgia    6:30 p.m.

Friday, Sept. 12

Liberty Christian at Crosspoint    5 p.m.

Rivers of Life at Crosspoint    7 p.m.

Hermann at Crossroads Inv    TBA

New Haven at SEMO Classic    TBA

Saturday, Sept. 13

Missouri Baptist JV at ECC    10 a.m.

Indian Hills at ECC    2 p.m.

Borgia at Springfield Classic    TBA

Union at Rockwood Summit Tny    TBA

Hermann at Crossroads Inv    TBA

New Haven at SEMO Classic    TBA

St. James at Cuba Tny    TBA

Monday, Sept. 15

Union at Cuba    5:30 p.m.

Hickman at Hermann    5:30 p.m.

Sullivan at Potosi    5:30 p.m.

Montgomery Co at Owensville    5:30 p.m.

St. James at Licking    6 p.m.

ECC at Missouri Baptist JV    6 p.m.

New Haven at Borgia    6:30 p.m.

Tuesday, Sept. 16

*Sullivan at St. Clair    4:30 p.m.

*Washington at Ft. Zumwalt E    5 p.m.

*New Haven at Union    5:30 p.m.

*Pacific at Hermann    5:30 p.m.

*Owensville at St. James    5:30 p.m.

Boys Soccer

Saturday, Sept. 6

St. Charles at Washington    11 a.m.

Borgia at St. Dominic Tny    TBA

Pacific Tournament    TBA

Sunday, Sept. 7

Blue River 3, East Central 1

Monday, Sept. 8

Christian Academy at Fulton SA    4:30 p.m.

Pacific at Washington    5 p.m.

*Sullivan at St. James    5 p.m.

Tuesday, Sept. 9

Sullivan at Valley Park    4 p.m.

*ECC at St. Charles    4 p.m.

Crosspoint at St. Louis United A    4:30 p.m.

*St. James at Union    5 p.m.

St. Clair at Belle    5 p.m.

Mehlville at Pacific    5 p.m.

*Borgia at Duchesne    6:15 p.m.

Wednesday, Sept. 10

Washington at Warrenton    5 p.m.

Thursday, Sept. 11

*Washington at Holt    4 p.m.

Windsor at St. Clair    4:30 p.m.

Sullivan at Festus    4:30 p.m.

St. James at Calvery Lutheran    5 p.m.

Borgia at Pacific    6:30 p.m.

Friday, Sept. 12

ECC at Oakton    4 p.m.

*Fulton SA at Eagle Ridge    4:30 p.m.

Dixon at St. James    5 p.m.

Crosspoint at Jefferson City Lightning    5 p.m.

Saturday, Sept. 13

Washington at Helias    11 a.m.

Cape Central at Union    11 a.m.

ECC at Lake Co    3 p.m.

Monday, Sept. 15

*Sullivan at St. Clair    4:30 p.m.

Affton at Pacific    5 p.m.

St. James at Richland    5 p.m.

Tuesday, Sept. 16

Crosspoint at Fulton St. Albans    4:30 p.m.

Tolton Catholic at Borgia    5:30 p.m.

*Washington at Ft. Zumwalt E    6 p.m.

Cross Country

Tuesday, Sept. 9

Sullivan Invitational    4 p.m.

Thursday, Sept. 11

Pacific, Sullivan at Steelville Inv    4 p.m.

Saturday, Sept. 13

Forest Park Inv    9 a.m.

New Haven, Hermann, Owensville at Linn Inv    9 a.m.

Monday, Sept. 15

St. James at Bourbon    4 p.m.

Girls Golf

Monday, Sept. 8

Washington at Timberland    3:30 p.m.

Tuesday, Sept. 9

*O’Fallon Christian at Borgia    3:30 p.m.

Wednesday, Sept. 10

Washington at Troy    3:30 p.m.

Tuesday, Sept. 16

*Borgia at St. Dominic    3:30 p.m.

Boys Swimming

Friday, Sept. 5

Washington at Oakville/CBC    4:15 p.m.

Wednesday, Sept. 10

Washington at Kennedy    5:30 p.m.

*Conference Games

Racing News