Missouri got a bit of a reality check after a standout season-opening win with a tough 40-12 loss to Kansas State. And the complete offensive collapse could not have been more apparent.

Many issues have come to light since the high of the 52-24 victory over Louisiana Tech, and the schedule ahead will show a lot about just where Missouri stands. The Tigers have potential but also some kinks to work out.

What’s going right …

It’s hard to put a lot into this category after Missouri ranged from lackluster to flat-out terrible in all three phases against a legitimate opponent that served as a measuring stick to where this team truly is. This stage of the rebuild in comparison to how Missouri has performed and the way it has been perceived appears to be on the right track — so long as there aren’t more games like the Kansas State one.

Landing a 5-star recruit of wide receiver Luther Burden’s stature alone was a huge step in the right direction. Burden already has brought some electricity to an offense that needed a standout pass-catcher. More is better, obviously, and Eli Drinkwitz’s ability to continue to sign elite talent will determine how quickly the Tigers can achieve true relevance.

The Tigers went 3-5 in the SEC last year and opened this one by hugely outplaying the same team (La. Tech) that gave Mississippi State a run for its money last year despite being a “lesser” opponent.

And Missouri has a lot of things to like defensively, despite the fact the unit still can’t be classified as a standout. It gave the team a fighting chance after a slow start against Kansas State.

Deuce Vaughn is a future pro. He closed last season by rushing for 146 yards and 3 TDs in K-State’s bowl win over LSU. Mizzou somewhat kept him in check early, even though he finished with 145 yards and 2 scores.

The Tigers allowed back-to-back touchdowns on Kansas State’s first two possessions but then forced punts on 4 consecutive drives. Eventually the defense couldn’t hold anymore, and Kansas State busted things open with 20 more points in the second half, but you can’t expect a defense that is constantly on the field to hold for four quarters with nothing giving from the offense.

When Missouri’s quarterbacks threw 4 interceptions in very short span of time, the defense limited Kansas State to 2 field goals. Nothing about the game was pretty, but it’s safe to say the defense did what it could under the circumstances and that if this was a subpar unit, the final score could have looked more like a basketball game.

What’s in-between …

The ground game, despite the loss of Tyler Badie, looked better than many thought it would in the first game. The Tigers pummeled the Bulldogs with a total of 323 rushing yards. That wasn’t the case with Kansas State, which held the Tigers to 94 yards, but a lot of that had to do with the fortress that is the Wildcats’ defense, which overwhelmed Mizzou up front.

Another thing that can be classified as “in-between” — though some may be overreacting to — is quarterback play.

Sure, Brady Cook has got to make better decisions and improve his ball placement. But let’s remember, Cook is learning on the job. Growing pains are to be expected. It’s too early to say he’s not the guy and the Tigers need to move on.

There’s a reason he won the job, a reason many viewed him as a legitimate SEC starter. Cook is raw but has shown flashes as a passer. His ability to evade pressure and use his legs to make plays helped him win the job. How quickly he makes strides over the course of the season will tell a lot about where he is and how much potential he really has — both things that are still largely unknown.

What’s going wrong…

The game plan against Kansas State clearly didn’t work and many were wondering where the trick plays and the wildcat formation — the same thing the Tigers used Luther Burden in on a play that resulted in a touchdown against LA Tech — went. Perhaps the re-introduction of more of that will help.

The Tigers averaged just 3.4 yards per play against K-State and the only player who scored outside of running back Cody Schrader was placekicker Harrison Mevis.

K-State has only allowed 1 TD in 2 games. Last year they finished 4th in the Big 12 in scoring defense. It’s easy to overreact to the Tigers’ poor offensive showing, but let’s hope this was more about K-State’s ability than Mizzou’s inability.

The coming weeks will tell us a lot about how much these offensive issues are a reflection of just how much work Missouri has to do on this side of the ball, how dominant and perhaps underrated Kansas State’s defense is, or somewhere in-between.