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Mizzou becomes bowl eligible after victory against Vanderbilt

NASHVILLE – Following a 51-14 drubbing at home to Auburn, Barry Odom gave a passionate speech to the media. He said, “I’m the man to go get it done with this staff, with this team, with this program.”

He was right.

Mizzou football accomplished a goal many may not have guessed after its 1-5 start. The Tigers are now bowl eligible after a 45-17 win over Vanderbilt. The win is also Odom’s first SEC road win as the head coach of the Tigers.

ABC 17 Sports Director Andrew Kauffman caught up with the Tigers after the game:Mizzou has now won five straight games to improve to 6-5 (3-4 SEC). The Tigers are just the 14th team in college football history to be become bowl eligible after starting a season 1-5.

Drew Lock completed just 10-25 passing but had three touchdowns putting him one shy of Chase Daniel’s single-season Mizzou passing touchdown record of 38 in 2008. Albert Okwuegbunam also had two receiving touchdowns giving him nine on the season to break Jeremy Maclin’s Mizzou freshman touchdown record in 2007.

Mizzou’s offense started strong as Drew Lock found Albert Okwuegbunam in the back corner for the 11-yard touchdown. The score capped off an eight play, 71-yard drive to make it 7-0 Tigers in the opening minutes of the game.

Mizzou’s defense responded as Adam Sparks came up with an interception on Vanderbilt’s next drive. However, the Tigers turned the ball over one downs after going for it on 4th down deep in Commodore territory.

After multiple three and outs, Mizzou’s offense came back to life on third down as Lock found J’Mon Moore down the sideline for a 71-yard completion inside the red zone. One play later, Larry Rountree rushed into the end zone making it 14-0 Tigers with 13:43 left in the second quarter.

With 7:33 left in the second quarter, Brandon Lee jumped the route and picked off Kyle Shurmur and returned it 41 yards for the touchdown to make it 21-0 Missouri.

On the ensuing Tiger drive offensively, Lock passed to a wide open Richaud Floyd who tip toed down the sideline into the end zone. The 30-yard touchdown capped off a six play, 56-yard drive giving Mizzou a 28-0 lead with 4:56 remaining in the first half.

Floyd was not done. On the next Vanderbilt punt, Floyd returned the kick 74 yards to the end zone making it 35-0 Mizzou with 3:11 left in the first half. Mizzou’s 35 first-half points are the most scored by the Tigers against a conference opponent since joining the SEC.

Vanderbilt outscored Mizzou 17-3 in the 3rd quarter, but the Tigers responded in the fourth as Lock connected with Okwuegbunam for another touchdown as the Tigers cruised to victory.

Mizzou looks to end the regular season on a high note on the road against Arkansas in the Battle Line Rivalry game. Kickoff from Fayetteville is set for Friday, Nov. 24 at 1:30 p.m.

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