• Jordan Simal

Armed Forces Bowl: Missouri @ ARMY Game Notes

Lockheed Martin Armed Forces Bowl

Dec. 22, 2021 Amon G. Carter Stadium, Fort Worth, TX

8:00 p.m.

Q1 On their opening drive of the game, Missouri freshman quarterback Brady Cook and the Tigers offense were nearly handed a three-and-out to begin the game. However, a key third-down conversion, and huge 12-yard rushes from running backs Dawson Downing and Elijah Young, kept Missouri moving. Cook showed off his wheels on a triple-option play and found the endzone an a 30-yard touchdown run. The drive went for 72 yards on seven plays, lasting 3:05. Mizzou 7, ARMY 0. In response, Army senior quarterback Christian Anderson and the Black Knights took to the field and gave Missouri an early taste of the triple-option offense. Big early runs from sophomore running back Tyson Riley and senior running back Brandon Walters set the momentum for the drive before Army converted an early fourth-down conversion to reach the Tigers’ 23-yard line. But the Black Knights were unable to score as junior kicker Cole Talley missed a 43-yard field goal. Mizzou 7, ARMY 0. For the Tigers, Young stormed out of the gate on the opening play of Missouri’s ensuing drive for 21 yards to reach their own 47-yard line. A roughing-the-passer penalty further carried the Tigers downfield, but the drive stalled after Cook was sacked by junior outside linebacker Andre Carter, II at the Army 10 yard line. Missouri settled for a 22-yard field goal by sophomore kicker Harrison Mevis. The drive went 69 yards on eight plays, lasting 3:27. Mizzou 10, ARMY 0. Q2 To close the first quarter, Anderson completed a 42-yard bomb downfield to sophomore running back/wide receiver Tyrell Robinson, which set the Black Knights up at the Missouri 33-yard line yard line. Five plays later, Anderson kept it himself and ran 22 yards to the house for Army’s first touchdown of the ball game. The drive went 75 yards on six plays, lasting 1:59. MIzzou 10, ARMY 7. Missouri’s offense returned with a vengeance on the ground, pounding their way through the Army defensive line into the Black Knights’ red zone. But when the Tigers did go to the air, deep in the drive, the completion fell short of the first-down line. This led to another short field goal from Mevis. The drive went 67 yards on 16 plays, lasting 7:57. Mizzou 13, ARMY 7. Following a three-and-out by the Black Knights, Missouri returned to its offensive dominance, as Cook found redshirt freshman JJ Hester early on back-to-back plays to advance to their own 47-yard line. Another 22-yard pass from Cook to graduate wide receiver Keke Chism set up Missouri deep inside Army territory at the Army 28-yard line. Again, though, the Army defense held when it mattered and Missouri was unable to finish the drive, settling on a third field goal from Mevis. The 29-yarder was good and the deficit grew to two scores. The drive went 64 yards on 11 plays, lasting 3:49. Mizzou 16, ARMY 7. As ESPN reported, Missouri was 9-0 when leading at the half over the past two seasons. Q3 To begin the second half, Army spread the football on the ground, changing up carries between Anderson, junior running back Jakobi Buchanan, and senior running back Cade Barnard that brought the Black Knights to the Missouri 42-yard line. A 13-yard run by Anderson eventually carried Army into the Tigers’ red zone before he went down with an ankle injury and left the game. Just one play later, junior quarterback Tyhier Tyler handed the ball off to Buchanan, who bowled over the Missouri defense to reach the endzone on a 10-yard bull rush to the goal line. The drive went 75 yards on 17 plays, lasting 8:25. Mizzou 16, ARMY 14. Downing and the Tigers got off to a quick start on their following drive, rushing for 14 yards on the first two plays from scrimmage. However, they were soon unable to move the football any further than the Army 43-yard line and failed to convert on a crucial 4th and 1, turning the ball over on downs. Q4 Following another fourth down conversion by Buchanan, Army kept feeding the ball to the big man, crushing the Tigers’ defensive line in the Cadets’ own version of power football. With 10:25 left in the game on 4th and 2 at the Missouri 14-yard line, Tyler and the Knights fooled the Tigers’ defense with a 14-yard touchdown pass to Walters to get Army its first lead of the ball game. The drive went 56 yards on 13 plays, lasting 6:29. Mizzou 16, ARMY 21. On only their second drive in the second half, Missouri slowly began to drive the football down the field, but Downing ultimately fumbled the football. Recovered by Carter, Army took possession at the Tiger’s 48-yard line. Despite the momentum, Army went three-and-out and punted the football away, which was tapped down at the Missouri two yard line with 5:47 left in the contest. In four-down territory for the rest of the game, Missouri began on their own two yard line. The drive soon stalled after Cook was sacked on a key third down by senior linebacker Arik Smith to force a punt with 3:48 left in the game. Mizzou 16, ARMY 21. Following a three-and-out by Army, and running out of time, the Tigers’ offense frantically returned to the field looking to score a much-needed touchdown to reclaim the lead. Fully utilizing their air attack, Missouri easily cut through the Army defense with a speedy tempo and consistent completions from Cook. He was 7-of-9 for 72 yards. To cap off the drive, Cook found Chism on a six-yard pass for another touchdown and the Tigers regained the lead. The two-point conversion attempt was no good. The drive went 83 yards on 11 plays, lasting 1:33. Mizzou 22, ARMY 21. With 1:11 left in the game, the Black Knights took the field looking to take back the lead they had just lost. A crucial personal foul on a facemask against Missouri brought Army into Missouri territory at the Tigers’ 37-yard line. Set up by an 11-yard pass from senior quarterback Jabari Laws to sophomore wide receiver Isaiah Alston, the Bowl Game came down to the foot of Talley, who faced a season-long 41-yard field goal. Talley booted the field goal straight down the middle of the uprights, and Army completed the comeback to win the 2021 Lockheed Martin Armed Forces Bowl. Mizzou 22, ARMY 24. FINAL SCORE: Mizzou 22, ARMY 24. Rushing: ARMY: Jakobi Buchanan: 21 rushes, 68 yards, 1 TD Riley Tyson: 6 rushes, 34 yards, 0 TDs Christian Anderson: 8 rushes, 33 yards, 1 TD Cade Barnard: 4 rushes, 24 yards, 0 TDs Jabari Laws: 3 rushes, 15 yards, 0 TDs Brandon Walters: 1 rush, 15 yards, 0 TDs Tyhier Tyler: 3 rushes, 8 yards, 0 TDs Anthony Adkins: 3 rushes, 8 yards, 0 TDs Tyrell Robinson: 6 rushes, 6 yards, 0 TDs Passing: ARMY: Christian Anderson: 4 attempts, 3 completions, 60 yards, 0 TDs, 0 INTs Jabari Laws: 4 attempts, 2 completions, 21 yards, 0 TDs, 0 INTs Tyhier Tyler: 1 attempt, 1 completion, 14 yards, 1 TD, 0 INTs Defense: ARMY: Marquel Broughton: 14 tackles