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Wake Forest to Play Missouri Tigers in Gasparilla Bowl

The Deacs are headed to Tampa

NCAA Football: Syracuse at Wake Forest Jim Dedmon-USA TODAY Sports

For the seventh straight season, the Wake Forest Demon Deacons are going bowling!

The Deacs will head to Tampa on December 23rd to take on the Missouri Tigers in the Union Home Gasparilla Bowl. I haven’t watched a single Missouri game all season, but here’s a quick scouting report based on minimum research.

The Tigers finished the season 6-6 overall and 3-5 in the SEC in Eli Drinkwitz’s 3rd season at the helm. Missouri was 83rd in the nation in both scoring offense with 25.5 points per game and total offense with 370 yards per game. Starting QB Brady Cook completed 65% of his passes for 2,500 yards, 13 touchdowns, and 7 interceptions. He is definitely what I would consider to be a dual threat QB, accounting for 550 rushing yards and 6 touchdowns on the ground this season. While it may not matter due to Wake’s defense, the Tigers ran up 131 of their 306 total points this season on Louisiana Tech, Abilene Christian, and New Mexico State. That means that against Power 5 competition, Mizzou averaged just over 20 points per game and scored more than 25 points in 1 game against Arkansas. Based on that, I don’t think I would classify the Tigers as having a dominant offense.

On the defensive side of things, the Tigers finished the season 57th in the nation in scoring defense, allowing 25 points per game. In terms of total offense, Mizzou was one of the better defenses in the nation this season, allowing just 337 yards per game, good for 28th in the nation. Mizzou only allowed 4 teams to score over 25 points on them this season: Kansas State (40), Georgia (26), Tennessee (66), and Arkansas (27). That’s pretty solid considering 3 of those 4 teams finished the season in the top 10.

On paper, I think this looks like a pretty competitive game. Obviously, Wake has a much better offense than Missouri, but the Tigers also have a much better defense than the Deacs. I think it should be a pretty fun matchup.

Go Deacs!