Columbia, MO (KMOV) -- Don't turn off your television sets yet, folks. The gentlemen of the Nevada Wolf Pack aren't ready to go away quite yet.
The Tigers took a 38-17 lead to the locker room, but they don't have the momentum. After Missouri's creatively named super-fastball offense got the Tigers a touchdown in just 32 seconds with the clock winding down, the Wolf Pack returned with a scoring drive that required every one of the first half's last 85 seconds. Colin Kaepernick hit receiver Marko Mitchell down the sideline for 42 yards and a score on the half's final play. Because Nevada deferred its choice when it won the pregame coin toss, the Wolf Pack will have the ball to start the second half.
Mizzou has done a solid job keeping the Nevada rushing game under wraps thus far, allowing just 88 yards on 20 attempts for the Pack while matching that output on only 12 carries. But once again, the secondary ran into trouble, and the improbable score at the end of the half for Nevada could be an unpleasant foreshadowing of things to come.
Speaking of the secondary, starting safety and defensive captain William 'Willy Mo' Moore returned to the field today after sitting out with injuries. He went off early in the second quarter after appearing to hurt his ankle on a missed tackle. KMOV photographer extraordinaire J.J. Bailey spotted Moore limping on the sideline but confirmed that he was not receiving medical attention and was expected to return to action, which Moore did.
That secondary will continue to have its work cut out if the defensive front seven can't get to Kaepernick, who is highly mobile in the backfield for Nevada. Kaepernick does most of his throwing on the run and seems very comfortable doing so. On one play early in the second, Kaepernick scrambled more than 25 yards backward before making it back to the line of scrimmage and getting the ball to an open receiver who couldn't quite handle the pass. The Tigers' defensive front must make Kaepernick get rid of the ball quickly if it hopes to give the defensive backfield a chance.
We're ready to go for the second half at Faurot. A score gets Nevada back in this game. A stop for Missouri could nip that in the bud in a hurry.
Steve Weinman is a J student at Mizzou