Despite the big win over South Carolina last week, there was an obvious void in the Missouri offense throughout the entire game.

With key receivers Jimmie Hunt and Darius White out against the Gamecocks, the Tigers and Maty Mauk struggled airing it out. He completed just 12 out of 34 passes and Missouri accumulated just 132 passing yards and a majority of the yardage came within the final minutes of the fourth quarter.

The inability of Missouri’s offensive line combined with a lack of reliable targets for Mauk made for a painful display of passing offense, a far cry from the normally productive Tigers’ air attack. Head coach Gary Pinkel understood that the absence of Hunt and White complicated things for his quarterback as he attempted to get in a groove with several of the newer guys for most of the game. It wasn’t working, however. According to ESPN Stats and Information, Mauk threw for just 62 yards and completed 31 percent of his passes on the team’s first 13 drives.

“I think it was a little bit of a test for Maty,” Pinkel said last week. Knowing the receiver, when he’s going to break in, break out, when he’s going to wrap it around a safety or linebacker or not, little things like that.”

Outside of Bud Sasser, junior wideout Wesley Leftwich led the rest of the wide receivers group with just two catches on the season. True freshman receiver Lawrence Lee and senior wideout Gavin Otte hadn’t hauled in a catch all season until they both had one reception against South Carolina.

Fortunately for Missouri, the bye week following South Carolina couldn’t have come at a better time. Both Hunt and White were listed on the depth chart as starters for the Tigers’ upcoming game against Georgia. The trio of Hunt, White and Sasser should pose some big problems to a Georgia secondary that’s inexperienced and struggled stopping opposing passing attacks.

“It’s really big,” Sasser said about having Hunt and White back into the rotation. “It’s a lot of experience out there. It’s just good to have those guys back out there on the field. They’re really great playmakers.”

Hunt and White make up more than half of the receiving touchdowns for Missouri with eight scores between the two of them and certainly have developed much more of a rapport with Mauk than any of the other receivers behind Sasser.

“You want the guys you’ve been with healthy so you can get out there and do what we know we can do,” Mauk said. “The bye week, all in all, has worked out in the perfect time.”