Missouri shocks No. 15 Kansas State on 61-yard field goal as time expires

COLUMBIA, MISSOURI - SEPTEMBER 16:  Place kicker Harrison Mevis #92 of the Missouri Tigers Celebrates with fans after kicking the game-winning field goal against the Kansas State Wildcats in the first half at Faurot Field/Memorial Stadium on September 16, 2023 in Columbia, Missouri. (Photo by Ed Zurga/Getty Images)

Missouri stunned No. 15 Kansas State with a 61-yard field goal by Harrison Mevis as time expired.

The kick came after a chaotic ending that forced Mevis to kick a field goal that was five yards longer than it should have been. With the game tied, Missouri was called for a delay of game with six seconds left after it apparently thought a timeout had been called after the Tigers spiked the ball on first down. Missouri then had a pass batted down at the line of scrimmage on second down before bringing Mevis on to attempt the last-ditch kick to avoid overtime.

He drilled the field goal with room to spare to secure the 30-27 win at Faurot Field.

Confusion reigned after the kick, too. A yellow T-shirt was thrown from the stands as the ball was in the air and prompted the SEC Network's production crew to flash that a flag had been thrown on the bottom of the screen. The presence of the shirt even made officials confer on the field to make sure there was no penalty as fans stormed the midfield logo.

The kick is the longest in SEC history and breaks a record that had stood for nearly 40 years and was set when college rules allowed the use of kicking blocks on field goal attempts.

Both quarterbacks dealt with injuries

Both Missouri QB Brady Cook and Kansas State QB Will Howard were not at 100% in the second half. Cook suffered a right knee injury when he rolled his ankle at the end of the first half while Howard was limping for much of the second half.

Missouri’s offense stagnated in the second half as Cook was banged up. The Tigers’ first six drives of the second half resulted in a field goal and five punts before Luther Burden III’s 26-yard catch-and-run gave Missouri a three-point lead with just over eight minutes to go.

Kansas State tied the game with 5:25 to go and had a chance to win the game. But the Wildcats had to punt after a false start at midfield and gave the ball back to the Tigers with 1:25 to go.

Missouri ran 10 plays in the final 85 seconds as the game looked destined for overtime after the incredible game mismanagement by Eli Drinkwitz and his coaching staff. The Tigers took their last timeout after getting a first down with 35 seconds to go. It was an odd spot for the timeout given the clock stops on first downs inside the final two minutes. And then it was exceptionally bizarre for Missouri to think a timeout had been taken after Cook spiked the ball with six seconds to go.

Burden finished the game with seven catches for 114 yards and two TDs while Cook was 23-of-35 passing for 356 yards. Howard was 25-of-39 passing for 270 yards and three TDs along with a first-half interception.

After the game, Drinkwitz said it was "bull crap" that fans booed Cook as he came out onto the field for his first series. Cook retained his starting job in fall camp over sophomore Sam Horn and Miami transfer Jake Garcia but was uneven through the first two games of the year. Saturday might have been his best game ever.

A big non-conference win for the SEC

Saturday’s game was the second in a home-and-home series between the former Big 12 rivals. And it was a great win for both Missouri and the SEC.

The conference had a rough first two weeks of the season against other conferences as Alabama, Florida, LSU and South Carolina all lost to ranked opponents and Texas A&M lost to Miami. As of the start of Week 3, Kansas State was the last remaining ranked non-conference opponent an SEC team is scheduled to play in 2023.

Mizzou’s win also means Kansas State has suffered a non-conference loss in back-to-back seasons. Before going onto win the Big 12, the Wildcats lost to Tulane in Week 3 in 2022 as the Green Wave became the surprise story of the college football season.

The win may not get Missouri into the AP Top 25 on Sunday — the Tigers weren’t that impressive over the first two weeks of the season themselves — but it’s still a massive victory for Drinkwitz in what could be a make-or-break 2023.