Columbia, MO (Sports Network) - Chase Daniel threw three touchdown passes and Jeremy Maclin returned a punt 64 yards for a score, helping No. 25 Missouri solidify its first ranking of the 2007 season with a 38-17 victory over Illinois State at Memorial Stadium.
Daniel completed 21-of-34 passes for 294 yards but was also intercepted twice while connecting on TD throws of 57, 11 and eight yards for the Tigers (4-0), whose high-powered offense rolled up 581 yards.
"Obviously I didn't play real well, (but) it's good to get those picks out of my system and I can guarantee they are out," said Daniel. "Of course you don't want four turnovers thrown just from the quarterback position in two weeks is uncalled for. I haven't played well at all."
William Franklin hauled in one of those scoring tosses and finished with two catches for 71 yards. Tony Temple paced the ground game with 18 carries for 101 yards and a score, while Maclin averaged 20.5 yards on four punt returns and also finished with five receptions for 53 yards and a touchdown.
Luke Drone threw for 242 yards on 22-of-37 passing with a touchdown and an interception for Illinois State (2-2), which had won its previous two games over Murray State and Eastern Illinois after dropping its season opener at home to Drake.
Eyad Salem caught seven passes for 106 yards and one score in defeat, while Geno Blow carried 21 times for 116 yards and Parrish Fisher rushed for 31 yards in seven chances and added a touchdown.
"We moved the ball and took some time off the clock and shortened the game," said Illinois State head coach Denver Johnson. "Those were some of things we talked about offensively. We didn't want to go three and out very often, I don't think we did. We wanted to try to shorten the opportunities they had."
Missouri got things going in a hurry, as Maclin returned the opening kickoff to his own 43-yard line. The Tigers then needed just one play to find the end zone, as Daniels connected with Franklin on a slant route for a 57-yard score just 17 seconds into the contest.
Mizzou also struck again with a little more than six minutes remaining in the stanza, as Daniels found Temple for an 11-yard TD pass. The score closed out a 10-play, 53-yard drive and put the Tigers up 14-0.
Illinois State finally showed some life on its next possession, using a 21- yard field goal by Tyler Funk to get on the board.
The Tigers went right back down the field however, as Daniels was on target with seven of his next eight pass attempts on an 11-play, 97-yard march that ate 2:40 off the clock. The final pass, an eight-yard scoring strike to Maclin, made it 21-3 with 8:32 left in the half.
The Redbirds got a four-yard touchdown run from Fisher with 3:41 remaining, while the half ended on a 26-yard field goal from Mizzou kicker Jeff Wolfert to put the Tigers ahead, 24-10.
Wolfert failed to connect on a 34-yard field goal attempt in the third, but Missouri was able to increase its lead with 49 seconds remaining on a one-yard touchdown run by Temple.
Maclin then continued his huge game, returning a punt 64 yards for the touchdown just 25 seconds into the fourth to make it 38-10.
Salem hauled in a 13-yard TD pass late in the fourth quarter to account for the Redbirds' final score.
This was the first-ever meeting between the two schools...Illinois State is now 0-5 all-time against members of the Big 12, with losses at Oklahoma State, Kansas, Iowa State and Kansas State...The 97-yard scoring drive by Missouri was the longest that the Redbirds have given up this season...The subsequent 84-yard TD march by Illinois State was its longest of the 2007 season...Fisher's touchdown was his first in a Redbird uniform.
09/22 19:16:51 ET