Garrett Bridges, 23 Sports

Last Saturday the Missouri Tigers came back home to the place that invented homecoming and delivered a performance few expected. After losing their last three games, Mizzou won easily at home against a very good Memphis team, 65-33. Now, the Kentucky Wildcats come to town, ranked as the No. 12 team in the nation. Kentucky’s incredible defense is allowing the second-fewest points in the nation (12.9), setting up what will be one of the toughest tests Mizzou’s offense will face all year.

The Tiger offense finally came back to life against Memphis, gaining 646 yards of total offense, mostly in two and a half quarters. Drew Lock had four TDs passing, and only six incompletions. The main beneficiary of Lock’s good game was Albert Okwuegbunam; the tight end had six catches for 159 yards and three TD catches. The run game was also productive for Mizzou, totaling 273 rushing yards. They were led by Larry Rountree III, who had nine carries for 118 yards and three TDs.

Kentucky also has a great rushing offense. Benny Snell, the Kentucky RB, leads the SEC with 868 rushing yards. QB Terry Wilson doesn’t offer much in the passing game. He threw for just 18 yards last week in a 14-7 home win over Vanderbilt, a team that’s only 3-5 this year and ranks only 8th in the SEC in points allowed.

Emmanuel Hall and Nate Brown likely won’t play this week either, so starting outside wide receivers Jalen Knox and Richaud Floyd will need to create separation against a tough Kentucky secondary.

The formula to beat Kentucky is simple: Contain Benny Snell. If Snell has a mediocre game, that forces Terry Wilson to beat Mizzou, which is unlikely to happen. Mizzou has too much talent on offense to lose if Snell doesn’t go off. Look for Mizzou to stack the box on Kentucky and get head coach Barry Odom his first ever win against a ranked opponent.