Missouri 31, NE Louisiana 22
COLUMBIA, Mo. (AP) _ Brock Olivo scored three first-half touchdowns and rushed for a career-high 222 yards on 38 carries as Missouri closed out its non-conference schedule with a 31-22 victory over Northeast Louisiana on Saturday.
Olivo scored on runs of 16, 1 and 3 yards, scored on a conversion pass and had 127 yards at the half, two short of his previous season high, as Missouri (2-2) jumped to a 28-7 lead. He’s only the third player in school history to top 200 yards and the second sophomore to reach 1,000 career yards, joining Darrell Wallace.
Olivo, who entered the year with one touchdown, was held to 28 yards last week in a 41-14 loss at Texas Tech. His total is the most since Wallace ran for 224 yards against Kansas State in 1985. Harry Ice holds the school record with 240 yards on eight carries in 1941.
The Tigers are off to their best start since 1991 but had to hang on for the victory over Northeast Louisiana (1-3), in its second year in Division I-A. Northeast lost 66-14 at Colorado last week.
After Northeast cut the gap to 28-22, Olivo got almost all of the work on the Tigers’ final drive that started on their 20 with 7:24 to go. Missouri finished off Northeast with a 23-yard field goal by Jason Norris with 28 seconds to go.
Missouri continued a season-long, second-half slump, getting only six plays in the third quarter as Northeast had two long drives and went for the touchdown on consecutive series from inside the 10. Raymond Philyaw threw out of the end zone on the first attempt from the 7, but hit David Smith on a 7-yard score to cap the next drive with 2:46 left in the third.
Northeast cut the gap to 28-22 when Eric Foster ran for a 7-yard score with 11:21 to go and Philyaw hit Keith Gardner on a conversion pass. After Olivo fumbled the ball away at the Northeast 41 with 9:49 left, Northeast drove to the Missouri 8 before Mike Yocca missed a 37-yard field goal.
Northeast also turned Philyaw’s swing pass to Kendall Bussey into a 55-yard touchdown with 14:45 left in the first half.
Brandon Corso produced Missouri’s other touchdown, an 11-yard pass to Eddie Brooks in the second quarter.
Foster’s touchdown was set up by Corey Sampson’s interception at the Northeast 46, the first against a Missouri quarterback in 155 throws. Missouri and Northeast Louisiana entered the game as two of seven schools in the country without an interception.
At halftime Missouri announced it would name its new track complex after Dan Devine, who took the Tigers to six bowl games as coach from 1958-70 and hasd two stints as athletic director. Devine is the last coach to take Missouri to the Orange Bowl, in 1969.
Missouri is the only Division I school without a track.