Players of the game on offense – Running backs Leon Patton and James Johnson
It took both players until the second half to really get going, but the Tiger defense didn't have an answer for these two as they racked up 182 yards rushing in the final two quarters. Patton finished the game with 112 yards rushing and one touchdown. He also led the team in receptions (2), receiving yards (38) and kick return yards (124) giving him a total of 274 all-purpose yards.
Johnson rushed for 103 yards and his first career touchdown in the fourth quarter alone, making him the second Wildcat (Thomas Clayton in the fourth quarter against Louisville) to rush for more than 100 yards in a single quarter this season. He finished with a career-high 127 yards on the ground.
This was the first time K-State has had two 100-yard rushers in the same game since Allen Webb (147) and Darren Sproles (135) accomplished the feat against Nebraska in 2004.
Player of the game on defense – Linebacker Zach Diles
Diles was third on the team in total tackles with six, but his biggest contribution came on Missouri's first play from scrimmage.
Defensive end Rob Jackson blindsided Daniel, causing a fumble that was picked up by Diles. He returned it 43 yards for the first touchdown of his career, which gave the Wildcats an early 7-0 lead.
Surprise Contributor –
The offensive line
The five guys up front had a lot to do with the Wildcats rushing for 262 yards. The total was the most as a team this season and the most since rushing for 307 last season against North Texas. The only problem is they allowed four sacks on quarterback Josh Freeman and they had three false start penalties.
Play of the game –
4th and goal from the one-yard line for the Wildcats
K-State was ahead 7-3 early, and had the ball deep in Tiger territory on its first possession of the second quarter. The Wildcats had seven plays with a goal-to-go situation, but were unable to come away with any points.
On fourth and goal from the one-yard line with 12 minutes to play in the second, coach Ron Prince called an off-tackle run play that was stuffed at the line of scrimmage. Johnson was stopped at the goal line, and Missouri took over on downs.
The Tigers used the momentum from that play and they took 10 plays and a little more than three minutes to drive 99 and take a 10-7 lead that they would not relinquish.
Offensive Grade – C
The running game came to life in the second half, but the game was well in hand by then. The Wildcats had the ball in Missouri territory on all five of their first-half possessions, but were unable to put any offensive points on the board.
The Wildcats also turned the ball over on its first three possessions of the second half and Missouri capitalized with 17 points on the ensuing drives. This took away any chance K-State had of making a comeback.
Freeman was only 5-of-19 on the day with 63 yards passing and two interceptions thrown.
Defensive Grade – F
Daniel did whatever he wanted against K-State's defense, as he picked it apart to the tune of 24-of-31 passing, 262 yards and four touchdowns. The Wildcats had their worst game defensively of the season, as they gave up 433 yards of offense to the Tigers and 41 points, which are both the most against K-State this year.
Special Teams Grade – B-
Patton averaged 25 yards per kickoff return with a long of 38, and cornerback Justin McKinney had a 32-yard return of his own.
Three of Tim Reyer's four punts were downed inside the Tigers 20-yard line, and the coverage units didn't give up any big plays.
The special teams wasn't spectacular, but it was definitely efficient.