- David Ubben, College Football
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Missouri has already secured its third 10-win season in four years under Gary Pinkel, as the Tigers prepare to face an Iowa team that lost its last three games. The Tigers enter favored by a field goal, and Iowa is hoping to secure a win to cap a disappointing season that began with legitimate Big 12 title hopes and a top-10 national ranking.
WHO TO WATCH: Missouri receiver T.J. Moe. The Tigers resident slot machine rang up 77 receptions and his 893 yards ranked fourth in the Big 12. The former high school quarterback suffered a broken foot as a freshman in 2009, and had just two catches for 8 yards. As a sophomore, he's emerged as one of the most difficult covers in the conference and the country. If Iowa lets the 6-foot, 200-pounder run free in the secondary, Missouri's offense will start humming and prove difficult to stop. Stopping Moe puts the Tigers a bit out of sync. He's been held to fewer than five catches just twice this season.
WHAT TO WATCH: Missouri's offensive line versus Iowa's defensive line. Headliner Adrian Clayborn didn't put up any record-setting numbers, but the Hawkeyes boast a fearsome front four that can disrupt Missouri's offense with plenty of penetration. Karl Klug and Mike Daniels must be slowed and contained for Missouri to earn a win. If not, expect quarterback Blaine Gabbert's pass attempts to balloon and the Tigers offense to turn one-dimensional.
WHY WATCH: To keep an eye on all the black-and-gold? I kid. The game features plenty of big names in Gabbert and Clayborn, as well as Iowa quarterback Ricky Stanzi. The Hawkeyes are playing without their top receiver and top running back, but both teams spent time in the top 10 and are the premier programs in their states. It should be quality football, and any time two clashing offenses like Iowa's power game and Missouri's spread get together -- offenses that personify their respective conferences -- there's a little bit more on the line.
PREDICTION: Missouri 27, Iowa 17. The Tigers struggle early on offense, but make a few adjustments to get things rolling in the second half while the Hawkeyes search for reliable options in their own offense.
1dJake Trotter, Brandon Chatmon and Max Olson