Sunday, November 25, 2007

Just Another Case of MTAC

Classic performance by a Kansas team in a big game. Almost as if they were donning KU basketball uniforms, in the biggest game of their year, and in the history of the program, the Kansas Jayhawks self-destructed and lost 36-28 to the hated Missouri Tigers at Arrowhead Stadium. I cannot sit here and opine how you how upset I am by this loss because truth be told, if KU loses tonight to Arizona in basketball, I will be way more pissed.

However, I did make it a priority to watch the game. The MTAC crew headed down to one of our favorite sports bars to grab some food and watch the game. We had three KU grads in attendance and while we were into the game, something was missing. Right off the bat, you could tell this wasn't going to be KU's night. Chase Daniel hit Martin Rucker on a 4th and goal at the one. 7-0 Mizzou at the end of one. Jayhawks QB Todd Reesing hadn't been picked off in 213 straight passing attempts. That all changed on a drive that followed the first Mizzou TD. Reesing was behind receiver Marcus Henry in the endzone and was intercepted.

It was a sign of things to come. Daniel, unstoppable all night long, made perhaps the play of the night. On a third down at the KU 11, a three man rush pushed Daniel out of the pocket. He seemingly scrambled for 30 seconds before finding a streaking Danario Alexander for a TD. 14-0 Mizzou. That is when I turned to my friends as uttered one of my famous phrases usually saved for KU basketball games: "I know a losses when I see one. This is a loss."

There was more. Kansas kicker Scott Webb, money all season, doinked one of the right side upright from 33 yards with KU down 14-0. He had a shot at redemption from 45 on KU's next possession and hooked it to the left. The offense, so precise and hot all year, could not get anything going against the Tiger D until it was too late. Give KU credit though, they never stopped fighting and actually had the ball with 17 seconds left trailing by six. Think those Webb kicks were huge?

The truth is, Missouri was a better team. Chase Daniel was an absolute stud going a ridiculous 40-49 for 361 yards and three TD's. His escapability was on full display as everytime he needed to make a big play, he delivered. KU's defense had an answer for him. It didn't matter where this game was played, Missouri was winning it. To say it was typical KU would be stretching it, but one does wonder why teams in the Crimson and Blue uniforms seem to do things completely out of character when the lights are brightest.

Kansas Football fans have nothing to be ashamed of. This team battled until the end and had a season nobody in their wildest dreams ever though they could. They were over-matched all game long, yet battled back to within a score of winning the game in the end. They just dug themselves too big of a hole. “I certainly was disappointed in the way it ended, but we’ll live to fight another day,” Coach Mark Mangino said. “Get ready, make preparations for the bowl game and try to do our best to finish this season on a winning note.

KU's Perfect Season Spoiled by Tigers - Ryan Wood, Lawrence Journal-World

Arrowhead Aside, the Better Team Won - Tom Keegan, Lawrence Journal-World

Mizzou Leaves No Doubt About Which Team is #1 - Jason Whitlock, Kansas City Star

Daniel Was the Difference - Joe Posnanski, Kansas City Star

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