COLUMBIA, Mo. (AP) — Andrew Baggett couldn't sleep.
Hours earlier, he missed a 24-yard field goal attempt that ended Missouri's first loss of the season, a 27-24 double-overtime setback to South Carolina. When the ball thudded off the left goal post Saturday night, few in Memorial Stadium could believe it, least of all Baggett.
How could a kicker who tied a school record with five field goals the week before then miss a chip shot to tie the game?
"In the locker room, I just wanted to go crawl in a hole and disappear for a day or two," Baggett said.
Sitting at home after the game, the sophomore wondered whether the whole situation was a dream. The brownies his parents gave him that evening helped bring Baggett back to reality.
"They still love me," he said.
The Lee's Summit, Mo., native returned to practice Sunday afternoon where teammates and coaches consoled him, telling him there were other plays that affected the outcome of the game.
The reaction wasn't as kind on Twitter, where users disparaged the 21-year-old using homophobic slurs; one tweeted "go kill yourself everyone in Missouri hates you."
Baggett says he turned his phone off after the game but that "99 percent" of the messages he read later were positive. He didn't search his name on social media, but said nothing online could make him feel as bad as he did on the field after the miss.
"My players are like my kids," coach Gary Pinkel said. "I get bothered when people fire at any particular player. He's a Missouri Tiger. I understand fans are fans, but we're a family here, and I just wish people would back off."
Baggett leads the Southeastern Conference with 12 field goals this season, though he's taken 17 attempts. He's also converted 40 of 42 extra point attempts, helping No. 10 Missouri (7-1, 3-1 SEC) take a one-game lead in the SEC East Division. He earned SEC All-Freshman honors last year after making 14 of 20 field goal attempts, including a 35-yarder in quadruple overtime last Nov. 10 to defeat Tennessee 51-48.