August 3, 2006

Special teams? MU hopes this is the year

Think back. When was the last time Tiger fans didn't cover their eyes every time the special teams units came on the field? From missed extra points to one-yard punts to Randy Potter's fumbles at Texas A&M, this phase of the game has haunted Missouri for the better part of a decade.

Is this the year that changes? It's possible.

First of all, Missouri brings back Adam Crossett to kick off, punt and handle field goals once again. Crossett has hit some incredibly difficult kicks in the last two seasons. But he's also missed some incredibly easy ones. That can't happen this year. Fans can't be hoping an extra point is going through. They have to know it is. 50-yard punts cannot be followed by 20-yard punts. Missouri simply needs to be consistent in the kicking game.

The return game has actually been somewhat of a strength in recent years. Mizzou still hasn't taken a kickoff all the way back in ages, but Temple certainly showed flashes of being a fantastic return man a season ago. Of course, he also put a couple on the ground. If that problem is solved, there is no doubt Temple has the ability to bust a couple.

The Tigers don't have to be one of the best teams in the country on special teams. They just need to go unnoticed. The only time you talk about the special teams is when they mess up. If we never mention them again, the season will be a success.

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