No. 6 Missouri plays Nevada -

No. 6 Missouri plays Nevada

COLUMBIA, Mo. (AP) -- Back when he was climbing the coaching ladder at Toledo, Gary Pinkel was 3-0 against Nevada. He says they were, and remain, a dangerous team.

Pinkel will try to make it four in a row for his career over Nevada coach Chris Ault, and three in a row this season for sixth-ranked Missouri on Saturday. The Tigers have scored 52 points in each of their first two games and may need another big number against an opponent also capable of scoring points in bunches.

"They do things that can cause us problems on both sides of the football," Pinkel said. "They'll be prepared."

Missouri (2-0) had no problems last week in the home opener, scoring on the first five possessions and adding an interception return for touchdown for a seemingly effortless 42-0 lead in a 52-3 victory over Southeast Missouri State. Chase Daniel, 16-for-17 for three touchdowns and 245 yards in a quarter-and-a-half last week, said Nevada reminds him of the New Mexico team that upset the Tigers at home two years ago.

Nevada is 0-3 against the Big 12 heading into the first meeting between the schools and Ault notes of Missouri, "They are an unbelievable offense."

Nevada (1-1) presents more of a test than Southeast Missouri, a member of the Championship Subdivision. The Wolf Pack gave another high-scoring Big 12 school, Texas Tech, a run last week before Tech pulled away in the fourth quarter of a 35-19 victory.

Nevada scored 40 or more points five times last season while going 6-7, but got shut out 23-0 by New Mexico in the New Mexico Bowl. The Wolf Pack uses the somewhat unique pistol offense, basically an I formation out of the shotgun with one running back, but Pinkel said Missouri routinely practices against such formations.

Nevada is without a feature back also, losing Luke Lippincott to a season-ending knee injury in the Texas Tech loss. Lippincott led the WAC in rushing last season.

As long as the game's not too tight Missouri plans on getting playing time for both backup quarterback candidates, freshman Blaine Gabbert and senior Chase Patton, again in this game. Gabbert was one of the most highly touted prospects at his position out of Parkway West High School in suburban St. Louis, switching to Missouri after making verbal commitment to Nebraska.

A possible redshirt year went out the window in the home opener, setting him up as Daniel's successor.

"I thought he did some good things," Pinkel said. "Anytime you go from high school to being in front of that many people, it's quite an experience."

Missouri figures to get a handful of key players back for the game. Safety William Moore is likely to return from a bruised foot that sidelined him last week and wide receiver Danario Alexander and linebacker Van Alexander are both coming off knee injuries. Danario Alexander is a few weeks ahead of schedule after reinjuring a surgically-repaired knee in May.

"When he tore it again, he didn't sulk and I know he's ready to show people what he can do," linebacker Sean Weatherspoon said. "I think you can expect a big game out of him, too."

Moore's return figures to bolster a secondary that was shaky in the opening 52-42 victory over Illinois, surrendering 451 yards passing and five touchdowns to Juice Williams.

"He's a high level player," Pinkel said. "He makes us a better defense right away."

The game had been scheduled for telecast on a pay-per-view basis but will be nationally televised by Fox Sports Net after the Washington State-Baylor game was moved up a day due to weather conditions from Hurricane Ike.

(Copyright 2008 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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