Falling Out of Place

COLUMBIA, Mo. – For the third straight week the No. 1 team in the land has fallen after the No. 11 Missouri Tigers knocked off the No. 1 Sooners 36-27 on Saturday night.

The loss dropped the Sooners to 6-1 overall and 2-1 during Big 12 play.

The Tigers (7-0, 3-0 Big 12) did not wait long to get on the scoreboard. Sophomore wide receiver Gahn McGaffie returned the opening kickoff 86 yards for a touchdown to obtain the early momentum and 7-0 lead.

OU's offense came out flat on its opening drive. It was held to a three-and-out, with the only positive yards coming on a four-yard bubble screen to junior wide receiver Ryan Broyles.

The three-and-out was the Sooners' first on an opening possession this season.

But the momentum quickly turned back in OU's favor when coverage man James Winchester recovered a muffed punt in Missouri territory. The recovery was his second of the year, with his first coming in the waning minutes of the victory over the Texas Longhorns.

Redshirt sophomore quarterback Landry Jones took advantage of the game's first turnover as he capped off a four-play, 45-yard drive with a 27 yard touchdown pass to a wide open Kenny Stills to tie the game at 7-7.

Jones made his first big mistake of the game late in the first quarter, though, when he threw a pass directly into the hands of Missouri defensive end Aldon Smith, who returned the ball deep into OU territory, while driving in the Tigers' red zone. The interception was Jones' fourth of the season.

Missouri running back De'Vion Moore punched the ball in from a yard out to give the Tigers a 14-7 lead early in the second quarter.

The first two offensive touchdowns of the game were results of turnovers.

The Sooners squandered another scoring opportunity inside the red zone on their next drive. Senior running back Mossis Madu lost a fumble on the Tigers' 14 yard line to take momentum and the possible tying points off the board. Madu has lost a fumble in each of the two previous games.

Luckily for the Sooners, the fumble did not result in points for Missouri.

The third time was the charm for OU's offense, as it was able to turn a red zone trip into seven points after it started the drive at its own 11. Jones connected with [senior running back DeMarco] Murray for a four-yard touchdown to tie the game at 14 apiece with a little more than four minutes left in the first half.

Missouri responded with a field goal on the final play of the first half to take a 17-14 lead. The three-point deficit was the first the Sooners had to end a half this season.

OU got the ball to begin the second half, but was forced to punt after three plays. The Tigers turned the ball over on their first possession to give the Sooners the ball just outside red zone.

But OU let another opportunity get away. It gained just nine yards on the drive, and junior kicker Jimmy Stevens missed a 30-yard attempt wide left.

The failed red zone attempt was yet another of three missed opportunities from within Missouri's 20.

Following the miss, the Tigers drove down the field to have their series stall at OU's 13 yard line. They had to settle for a 30-yard field goal to increase their lead to 20-14 midway through the third quarter.

But Missouri's six-point lead and the recent red zone failures did not cause the Sooners' offense to go away. Jones connected with junior tight end James Hanna from three yards out for a touchdown, and Stevens' extra point conversion gave OU a 21-20 lead.

The touchdown was Hanna's third in as many games and fourth of the season. The lead was the Sooners' first of the game, and it turned out to be their only one.

Missouri drove 72 yards, which was capped off with a 38-yard touchdown pass between junior quarterback Blaine Gabbert and junior wide receiver Jerrell Jackson. The Tigers' failed two-point conversion attempt gave them a 26-21 lead.

Jones did not help the Sooners' cause on the following possession when he was picked off for the second time. The interception put Missouri on OU's 22 yard line, and the Tigers tacked on three points to take an eight-point lead with 9:44 left in the fourth quarter.

Jones completed 32 of his 50 attempts for 303 yards with three touchdowns and two interceptions. He did not complete a pass in the fourth quarter.

<>Following an OU three-and-out, the Tigers ran the ball down the Sooners throat and put the game away when freshman running back James Franklin scored from three yards outs. The touchdown put Missouri up 36-21.

The Sooners added a late touchdown run by freshman fullback Trey Millard and missed two-point conversion to avoid a double-digit defeat, and the following failed onside kick attempt marked the end of OU's perfect season.


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