Goodyear Cotton Bowl Classic Preview: #9 Missouri Tigers vs #7 Ohio State Buckeyes

The Ohio State Buckeyes will use a swarming defense to slow down the Missouri Tigers in the Cotton Bowl.
Photo Courtesy: MGoBlog

By DaVince “Dino” Wright

Game Info
#9 Missouri Tigers vs #7 Ohio State Buckeyes
Friday – December 29 – 7:00 p.m. 
AT&T Stadium – Arlington, TX

Records Before the Game
#9 Missouri Tigers (10-2, 6-2 SEC)
#7 Ohio State Buckeyes (11-1, Big 10)

Cotton Bowl – Then and Now
The Cotton Bowl is as historic as it is in popularity as a New Year’s Six game. The first game was played in 1937 at the Cotton Bowl at Fair Park in. Dallas where the State Fair of Texas is held. It was moved from there to AT&T Stadium in 2010. There are memories of talented future NFL Hall of Famers to kids watching them that would excel in other avenues of sports and life. The Cotton Bowl is one of the greatest college venues and bowls in American amateur sports. This year the #9 Missouri Tigers take on the #7 Ohio State Buckeyes in a Top 10 match up. Let’s take a closer look at the game.

#9 Missouri Tigers
The Tigers are coming in winners of their last 3 games with victories over Arkansas, Florida and Tennessee to close out the regular season. They play in a tough SEC East. The Tigers are led by junior quarterback Brady Cook. He has passed for 3189 yards with 20 touchdowns and 6 interceptions this season. He will be the x-factor for the Tigers for this one. His ability to distribute the ball effectively will make or break the Tigers. Senior running back Cody Schrader is a tough runner between the tackles and on the outside of the line. He has 1489 yards with 13 touchdowns. Players to watch: WR Luther Burden III, DB Joseph Charleston and DB Kris Abrams-Draine. Whatever you do, don’t miss a second of the Mizzou offense!

#7 Ohio State Buckeyes
The Buckeyes were led by sophomore quarterback Kyle McCord who has passed for 3170 yards with 24 touchdowns and 6 interceptions. McCord won’t be under center for this as he’s taken his talents to Syracuse. Devin Brown who is a sophomore out of Arizona will be signal caller. He doesn’t have much game experience. The good news is that his 0-line will be intact and can buy him time. His main target should be Marvin Harrison, Jr. who has racked up 67 receptions for 1211 and 14 touchdowns this season. Will he play? If so, he is the x-factor for the Buckeyes. He’s a game changer that almost won the Heisman trophy this year. Ultimately the entire receiving corps will need to step up and help Brown. Running back TreVeyon Henderson has produced this season with 854 rushing yards with 11 touchdowns. He’s an excellent pass catcher and blocker in the backfield. His play has lifted this team since becoming a starter. Players to watch: LB Tommy Eichenberg and CB Jordan Hancock. They both will be playing on Sunday afternoons before we know it.

ESPN has the Buckeyes with a 75.5% chance of winning this year’s Cotton Bowl Classic. The over/under is 48.5, so take the over in this one. I believe the game will be a close one with Ohio State putting up the game winning drive in the 4th Quarter. I’m taking the Buckeyes by 6!

Final Score
Buckeyes – 28
Tigers – 22