COLUMBIA, Mo. — The No. 2-ranked Georgia football team was tested in different ways before prevailing at Missouri, 43-29.
“I thought it might become a shootout, but not in that form,” Georgia coach Kirby Smart said. “I am proud of the way we competed. They made a play, we came back and made a play.”
The Bulldogs (4-0, 2-0 SEC) didn’t score an offensive touchdown until the second half, their 20-7 halftime lead fueled by three Tigers turnovers.
Missouri quarterback Drew Lock, a projected first-round NFL draft pick, was 23-of-48 passing for 221 yards with an interception and no touchdown passes before the Memorial Stadium crowd of 58,284.
The Tigers fall to 3-1 and 0-1 in league action.
• Redshirt freshman Eric Stokes had a blocked punt and returned it for a touchdown in the second quarter. Stokes also had three pass break-ups at cornerback with Tyson Campbell sidelined.
• D’Andre Walker had two sacks and two forced fumbles.
• Quarterback Jake Fromm showed his poise, lighting up the Missouri defense with three touchdown passes in the second half after a quiet first half. Fromm was 13-of-23 passing for 260 yards and three touchdowns with an interception.
• Deandre Baker shadowed Missouri’s top receiver, Emanuel Hall, now allowing him any receptions.
• Mecole Hardman extended his touchdown streak to four games when he hauled in a 54-yard touchdown pass from Jake Fromm with 14:52 remaining in the fourth quarter.
• Jeremiah Holloman’s catch and the balance shown on his 61-yard touchdown reception was highlight worthy, but so was the way he nearly squandered the opportunity. Holloman dropped the ball close enough to the goal line that officials stopped the game for a lengthy review.
• Freshman tailback James Cook made the most of his only target, catching one pass for 10 yards.
• Jonathan Ledbetter had a costly penalty when he shoved Missouri quarterback Drew Lock after Lock threw incomplete on fourth down form the 11. The Tigers scored a touchdown on the next play, cutting the lead to 27-13 with 7:50 left in the third quarter.
• Rodrigo Blankenship had his touchback streak snapped at 23 when he kicked off into the wind and Missouri was able to return it. Blankenship made field goals of 44, 40 and 21 yards, but he missed a 49-yard attempt and had a 36-yarder blocked in the fourth quarter.
• Georgia’s run game was largely stopped through the first three quarters, including two short-yardage situations: a fourth-and-1 at the Missouri 31 in the second quarter, and a third-and-1 at the Bulldogs’ 16 in the third quarter. Brian Herrien was the runner in the second quarter, Elijah Holyfield in the third quarter.