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Blackshirts, Special Teams Lead NU to Win

By NU Athletic Communications
Nebraska's Barrett Ruud finished with 17 tackles, including four tackles for loss, to lead a tough Blackshirt defense.
Nebraska's Barrett Ruud finished with 17 tackles, including four tackles for loss, to lead a tough Blackshirt defense.
Photo by Scott Bruhn/Nebraska Communications

Missouri Head Coach Gary Pinkel
Opening Statement:
"I want to congratulate Nebraska on a good win. Obviously, it was difficult for us. Two kicking errors like that—the impact of that is just huge. Obviously we had trouble running the football, and I give their defense credit for that. Certainly, I think that our defense played well except for about one play, and we’re just going to work to get better."

On his team’s confidence level:
"I think you just have to deal with that. We have to deal with that as a football team. Obviously, you lose confidence. I thought we played hard, I don’t question that. There are a lot of (games) left, and we’ll get back to work. It will certainly test the leadership of our football team, and my leadership and everything else."

On his team:
"I think we’re playing pretty good defense. I thought our kicking game was pretty sound, until today, obviously. You just can’t make plays like that. That’s not real complicated. You can’t make errors like that in your kicking game in a game of this magnitude. That was huge. We missed two field goals. One was into the wind and was very difficult. The other field goal I thought we were in pretty good shape to do it and we left the ball on the four-yard line. That’s 7-10 points, but you have to do it, obviously.

"We’re having some struggles offensively. Certainly, we struggled running the football today. As far as effort and guys’ preparation and everything else, it has been absolutely outstanding."

On struggles in the running game:
"Obviously we have some struggles there, but we just have to get better. We have to coach better and block better."

On the defense:
"We had a couple shots there. Certainly that’s where you’ll run into trouble when you’re having difficulty running the football. I thought our players fought all the way to the end. Unfortunately for our defense, they had that one big play at the end, because our defense really played outstanding to that point, and I’m certainly very pleased with that."

On the offense:
"We have to score more points. We threw the ball well at times today. We had a couple times where we got ourselves in decent field position where we had a chance to score some points. It’s not like we were just knocked down. It’s very difficult to rush for under 50 yards and win. That’s something that we have to work at."

On Nebraska’s defense:
"I thought their defense played really well. They were going to cinch everybody down to stop the run. You try to go up top for big plays, you try to throw the ball downfield, and we connected on a few, but didn’t connect on enough."

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