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Missouri Tigers Update: After Record-Breaking Offensive Performance, Showdown Looms With Oklahoma

The Missouri Tigers broke several records and mostly avoided major injuries in beating up on Western Illinois. The team now looks forward to its conference opener next weekend against top-ranked Oklahoma.

Missouri Head Coach Gary Pinkel has his hands full in preparing for the top-ranked Oklahoma Sooners.
Missouri Head Coach Gary Pinkel has his hands full in preparing for the top-ranked Oklahoma Sooners.

Missouri was expected to beat Western Illinois, but there were still plenty of noteworthy elements to yesterday's game. 

This Week's Game Ball Goes To
Henry Josey
. The sophomore running back started in place of De'Vion Moore, and gave coaches and fans alike plenty to think about with a spectacular 263-yard performance on the ground. What makes his performance even more impressive is that he only played in one half, carrying the ball 14 times on the way to 3 touchdowns. 

Record Breakers
Missouri's 743 yards of total offense was a school record. Running back Henry Josey and James Franklin combined for 510 of those yards, on the ground and through the air, respectively. Putting up 69 also points tied a school record. 

Caulton Ray's Absence
Western Illinois running back and leading rusher Caulton Ray, a Michigan State transfer, did not play due to a suspension for violating team rules. 

Injury Report
Missouri seems to have slid past Western Michigan relatively unscathed. They have been, however, playing without several starters. Head Coach Gary Pinkel said more information would be forthcoming about who would be available against Oklahoma. 

"We did not want that last touchdown. E.J. Gaines is our backup punt returner." (Missouri head coach Gary Pinkel)

Big 12 Dominance
Missouri's blow-out win against Western Illinois win was one of nine wins this weekend for the Big 12 (out of the ten games they played). Kansas was the lone conference loser at Georgia Tech. So far this season, the Big 12 has 24 wins and only two losses, including Missouri's overtime loss last week at Arizona State. It should pointed out that many of those wins are against non-BCS opponents, like yesterday's Missouri win against Western Illinois. Oklahoma, Iowa State, and Texas all picked up wins against BCS conference opponents. 

Looking Forward
The Tigers will have their hands full, as they travel next weekend to Oklahoma to play head coach Bob Stoops' top-ranked Oklahoma Sooners, who escaped Tallahassee with a 23-13 win over Florida State last night. The Sooners, led by quarterback Landry Jones and a stingy defense, will be looking to avenge last year's 36-27 loss in Columbia.