After a scoreless first quarter, Missouri went on a tear in the second quarter. Brown scored on a 16-yard touchdown run giving the Tigers a 7-0 lead. Roland threw an 11-yard touchdown pass to Denny as the Tigers extended their lead to 14-0. Bates kicked a 27-yard field goal as Missouri led 17-0 at halftime.
In the third quarter, Bates kicked a 34-yard field goal as Missouri led 20-0 at the end of three. Florida attempted to make a furious comeback in the fourth quarter. Steve Spurrier threw a 22-yard touchdown pass to halfback Jack Harper as Florida got within 20-6. Spurrier threw another 21-yard touchdown pass to end Charles Casey as Florida got within 20-12. Spurrier scored himself from two yards out, as the score became 20-18. Florida failed on three consecutive 2-point conversion attempts, and had they just kicked the extra points, they may have ended with a win.
Despite playing on the losing team, Florida's Steve Spurrier was named Sugar Bowl MVP.