Texas Bowl Break Down

We take a first look at the game as Texas Bowl Week has arrived

The 2009 Texas Bowl will be played on the natural grass surface of seven year-old Reliant Stadium in Houston, TX on New Year's Eve (2:30 P.M., ESPN), and pits the Navy Midshipmen (9-4) against the Missouri Tigers (8-4, 4-4).  A near capacity crowd is expected for this intriguing match up.


Each team's roster contains quite a number of native Texans.  Mizzou features 30 Texas natives on its roster in 2009, and there are 26 players from the state of Texas on the Navy roster. 
Missouri is ranked 35th, according to the coaches' poll, 37th in the AP poll, and 39th by CBS.  Navy is ranked 41st by the coaches, and 48th by CBS.  Sagarin has Mizzou at 47, and Navy at 54.


Navy brings the nation's 4th ranked rushing attack into the Texas Bowl (272.46 yds./game), and the Midshipmen have rushed for 40 TDs on the season.  QB Ricky Dobbs is the trigger man for their triple option attack.  He runs like a tailback, but has the ability to throw the ball, as well.  Dobbs went over 1000 yards rushing for the season in Navy's final regular season game against Army.  Navy's second leading rusher, Vince Murray, enters the Texas Bowl with 925 yards on the season.


While the Midshipmen rank last (120th) in the FBS in passing offense (71.38 yards/game), they rank 30th in passing efficiency (141.05 rating).  They're very good at catching the defense off guard when they do throw the football.  Navy has 11 different players with receptions this season, but none with as many as 10 receptions on the season.  Several of Navy's receivers do sport rather gaudy yards/reception averages, further indication that they like to draw you up, then slip someone behind you.


Defensively, Navy ranks 36th in the NCAA in total defense at 333.62 yds./game.   They've only given up 12 rushing TDs this season.  In truth though, Navy's best defense is their offense, as they specialize in controlling the football, and in shortening the game.


The Tigers come into this game riding a three game win streak, following a thrilling double comeback win in a shootout over Kansas.  There have been several headliners.


For starters, sophomore QB Blaine Gabbert's 3302 passing yards in 2009 currently ranks fourth on MU's single season list.  He trails only Chase Daniel, who owns Missouri's top three seasons with respect to passing yardage.  An average passing performance by Gabbert would move him past Daniel's 2006 season into third place on that list.


Senior WR Danario Alexander was named First-Team All-American by two panels, and was named to the second team on the other three.  He is the single-season record holder at Missouri in receptions 107 (3rd NCAA), and receiving yards 1644 (1st NCAA).  He is within reach of a top five season for receiving yardage in NCAA history.  He is currently tied with Jeremy Maclin for MU's single-season record for receiving TDs with 13. 

Even with all the time that he missed due to injuries throughout his career, he still ranks among Mizzou's career receiving elite, among names like Coffman, Rucker, Gage, and Maclin.


Missouri's 55th ranked defense (358 yds./game) is led by one of the greatest LBs to ever don a Tigers' uniform.  Sean Weatherspoon comes into the Texas Bowl 10 tackles shy of moving into 2nd place on Mizzou's career tackles list, behind only James Kinney.


RSF DE Aldon Smith comes into the Texas Bowl tied with Justin Smith for the most QB sacks in a single season in MU history, with 11.  Smith was named a Freshman All-American, and Big 12 Freshman Defensive Player of the Year.


Missouri is the youngest team in the country, with 35 of the 51 players listed on the two-deep, and 10 starters, who are either freshmen or sophomores.  In addition, Missouri had 14 freshmen who did not play this year, and will be listed as red-shirt freshmen for 2010.


One of those sophomores is All-American PK Grant Ressel (24-of-25 on field goals and 38-of-38 on extra points). He's a stellar 7-of-8 from 40 yards or longer.  He leads the nation in FG% (96%), and is on pace to break an NCAA season record for combined kick accuracy. He enters the Texas Bowl with a season mark of 98.4%, on a combined 62-of-63 (24-of-25 FGs / 38-of-38 PATs). The single-season NCAA mark is 98.3%.


Senior Jake Harry is on pace to become the leading punter in Missouri history, and is especially effective when it comes to net punting average.


A ninth win would be huge for this Missouri squad, but rest assured that Navy will come to play.  Since Navy will try to run the clock, and limit the number of possessions, it will be critically important for the Tigers to cash in early and often.


Comparative Statistics


MIZZOU________________________NAVY
417.17 [32nd]___ Total Offense___ 343.85 [84th]
132.17 [81st]___Rushing Offense___ 272.46 [4th]
15___________TDs Rushing__________ 40
285.00 [13th]___Passing Offense__ 71.38 [120th]
140.08 [35th]__ Passing Efficiency__ 141.05 [30th]
25___________TDs Passing____________ 5
30.33 [33rd]____Scoring Offense____ 27.46 [60th]
358.00 [55th]___ Total Defense___ 333.62 [36th]
96.42 [12th]___ Rushing Defense__ 126.54 [38th]
13________ TDs Allowed Rushing________ 12
261.58 [109th]__Passing Defense__ 207.08 [48th]
131.53 [T-71st]_ Pass Effic. Defense__ 123.89 [52nd]
19________ TDs Allowed Passing________ 14
24.58 [56th]____Scoring Defense___ 19.92 [20th]
+0.42 [31st]__ Turnover Margin__ +0.62 [19th]
17 / 7_ ______ Fumbles/Lost_______ 19 / 8
9_________ Interceptions Thrown_________ 4
8_________ Interceptions Gained________ 11
20.40 [89th]___Kickoff Return Avg._ 17.86 [118th]
9.79 [T-49th]___ Punt Return Avg.____6.81 [88th]
40.29 [5th]____ Net Punting Avg.___ 38.17 [15th]
2.42 [31st]_______Sacks By_____ 1.38 [103rd]
1.33 [27th]_____ Sacks Allowed_____1.62 [47th]
28:27 [101st]__ Avg. Time of Poss.____33:22 [5th]
36.8% [83rd]___3rd Down Conv.__ 45.9% [19th]
57.9% [31st]____4th Down Conv.__ 68.0% [19th]
2009 Mizzou Tiger Football

Missouri Overall Individual Statistics (as of Nov 29, 2009)
All games


>Rushing gp-gs att gain loss net avg td lg avg/g


Washington, Derrick 12-12 179 847 44 803 4.5 10 42 66.9


Moore, De'Vion 10-1 58 248 14 234 4.0 1 31 23.4
Gabbert, Blaine 12-12 94 415 187 228 2.4 3 40 19.0
Lawrence, Kendial 10-0 51 233 17 216 4.2 0 22 21.6
Jackson, Jerrell 12-6 11 96 4 92 8.4 1 37 7.7
Moye, Gilbert 10-0 6 36 1 35 5.8 0 17 3.5
Alexander, Danario 12-12 1 10 0 10 10.0 0 10 0.8
Perry, Jared 10-10 2 7 0 7 3.5 0 5 0.7
Costello, Jimmy 3 - 0 2 0 6 -6 -3.0 0 0 -2.0
TEAM 12-0 14 2 35 -33 -2.4 0 2 -2.8
Total 12 418 1894 308 1586 3.8 15 42 132.2
Opponents 12 396 1522 365 1157 2.9 13 41 96.4
Passing gp-gs effic comp-att-int pct yds td lg avg/g
Gabbert, Blaine 12-12 141.61 247-414-7 59.7 3302 23 84 275.2
Costello, Jimmy 3 - 0 61.04 9-17-2 52.9 64 0 16 21.3
Alexander, Danario 12-12 383.00 1-2-0 50.0 40 1 40 3.3
TEAM 12-0 0.00 0-1-0 0.0 0 0 0 0.0
Shock, Forrest 11-0 631.60 1-1-0 100.0 24 1 24 2.2
Washington, Derrick 12-12 16.00 1-1-0 100.0 -10 0 0 -0.8
Total 12 140.09 259-436-9 59.4 3420 25 84 285.0
Opponents 12 131.53 296-461-8 64.2 3139 19 74 261.6
Receiving gp-gs no. yds avg td lg avg/g
Alexander, Danario 12-12 107 1644 15.4 13 84 137.0
Perry, Jared 10-10 46 696 15.1 6 48 69.6
Jackson, Jerrell 12-6 37 458 12.4 2 70 38.2
Washington, Derrick 12-12 23 99 4.3 0 12 8.2
Kemp, Wes 12-11 20 335 16.8 3 49 27.9
Jones, Andrew 12-7 7 39 5.6 0 11 3.2
Woodland, Rolandis 7 - 0 4 23 5.8 0 8 3.3
Egnew, Michael 11-0 3 25 8.3 0 11 2.3
Moore, De'Vion 10-1 3 13 4.3 0 12 1.3
Lawrence, Kendial 10-0 2 42 21.0 0 33 4.2
Gerau, Brandon 12-1 2 19 9.5 0 14 1.6
Moe, T.J. 9 - 0 2 8 4.0 0 4 0.9
Smith, Jacquies 12-5 1 24 24.0 1 24 2.0
Moye, Gilbert 10-0 1 5 5.0 0 5 0.5
Gabbert, Blaine 12-12 1 -10 -10.0 0 0 -0.8
Total 12 259 3420 13.2 25 84 285.0
Opponents 12 296 3139 10.6 19 74 261.6
Punt Returns no. yds avg td lg
Gettis, Carl 21 153 7.3 0 27
Gerau, Brandon 3 22 7.3 0 11
Simmons, Jasper 0 60 0.0 0 60
Total 24 235 9.8 0 60
Opponents 20 57 2.8 1 13
Interceptions no. yds avg td lg
Rutland, Kevin 2 0 0.0 0 0
Ricks, Hardy 1 16 16.0 0 16
Harrison, Jarrell 1 27 27.0 0 27
Weatherspoon, Sean 1 6 6.0 0 6
Edwards, Kip 1 10 10.0 0 10
Simmons, Jasper 1 0 0.0 0 0
Smith, Jacquies 1 43 43.0 1 43
Total 8 102 12.8 1 43
Opponents 9 159 17.7 2 78
Kick Returns no. yds avg td lg
Simmons, Jasper 32 714 22.3 0 34
Lawrence, Kendial 12 218 18.2 0 32
Kemp, Wes 5 107 21.4 0 33
Jackson, Jerrell 3 53 17.7 0 21
Prince, Munir 2 43 21.5 0 30
Gettis, Carl 1 18 18.0 0 18
Hobson, Trey 1 8 8.0 0 8
Gissinger, Jon 1 2 2.0 0 2
Total 57 1163 20.4 0 34
Opponents 64 1421 22.2 0 53
Fumble Returns no. yds avg td lg
Simmons, Jasper 1 8 8.0 0 8
Gettis, Carl 1 20 20.0 0 20
Gooden, Zaviar 1 1 1.0 0 1
Total 3 29 9.7 0 20
Opponents 0 0 0.0 0


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