Mack meets the media
Nearing the end of his first year on the job, athletic director Mack Rhoades met with the media yesterday and had quite a few interesting updates to share.
On the South Endzone...
• There is news on the south end zone football facility: There will be no facility south of the Memorial Stadium. MU is in the process of reviewing five concepts for a few football team facility and all five options are located on the west side of Providence Boulevard on the land where the current Mizzou Athletics Training Center resides. The new facility, whether it requires a total demolition of the current building or renovations, will include coaches’ offices, meeting rooms, weight rooms, locker rooms, sports medicine rooms, etc.
MU is also considering a new indoor facility on that side of Providence to replace the Devine Pavilion. The new building will center around a new dining facility and academic center. Since his arrival last year, Rhoades never seemed sold on building a football-exclusive building south of the stadium, a project that former coach Gary Pinkel often referred to as the new Taj Mahal for Mizzou football.
Rhoades said Odom is involved in the plans and has one preferred option among the five. Rhoades expects MU to settle on a concept in the next four weeks and then move forward with fundraising.
This is a noted change to what Mike Alden and Gary Pinkel had moved toward when Missouri entered the SEC. Back then it was:
Alden said there's urgency to renovate that endzone, which will have football offices and frees up the MATC, where football currently is.— Austin Kim (@AustinKKim) December 4, 2014
So much for a Mizzou Taj Mahal.
On the Hearnes Center...
The 44-year-old Hearnes Center, whose demise has been discussed for several years, is still on the chopping block, although it sounds like the building is growing on Rhoades.
"Initially, we really felt like with the studies done, it’s just a very inefficient building, and we were going to knock it down and replace it with a 5,000-seat arena that would host volleyball, gymnastics, wrestling," Rhoades said. "I think that’s probably where we’re still headed."
But Rhoades said he has given some thought to installing a false ceiling inside the Hearnes Center to give it a more intimate feel and to renovate it to have it resemble a "nostalgic, old-time place, much like some of the baseball parks."
On Donations and Tickets...
"You look at our donation totals and our pledge totals since January 1st of this year compared to January 1st of last year — we’re up," Rhoades said. "That’s been positive."
Missouri’s cumulative student-athlete grade-point average for the fall semester — 3.03 — was the highest in school history.
Rhoades also said 75 percent of football season tickets have been renewed, which lags behind last year but is ahead of the pace from 2012 after the Tigers’ most recent 5-7 campaign.
"We think, moving forward, we’ll have about 85 to 86 percent renewal rate," he said.
As mentioned at SB Nation yesterday, revenue has never been higher for the SEC -- "The conference ended up with four of the top seven, five of the top 10, and 10 of the top 17 teams on this list, with the only outliers falling outside that range being Missouri, Ole Miss and Mississippi State." -- so from an arms race perspective, this is a bad time to lag in ticket sales. It was also to be expected after last fall.
28. Chiefs: Connor McGovern, OG Missouri Kansas City could see a lot of what they saw in Mitch Morse in Connor McGovern, and with needs at both guard spots on the interior line, the athletic and tough McGovern makes a lot of sense. He can also play tackle in a pinch. He's not projected to go this high, but neither was Morse last year when the Chiefs grabbed him in the second round.
Mizzou Basketball fans will have a special chance to see the newest documentary from ESPN Films, "Norm", at Mizzou Arena on Friday, April 29, with a free public screening at noon. A panel discussion with three former Norm Stewart players will take place to introduce the film, featuring Kim Anderson (1973-77), Gary Link (1971-74) and Jon Sundvold (1979-83).
Mizzou > Missouri State
Mizzou Baseball (21-21) topped Missouri State (28-11), 17-9, on Tuesday night (April 26) thanks to a pair of two-run bombs over the left field wall by Shane Benes (Town and Country, Mo.) and Zach Lavy (Auxvasse, Mo.). It was a team effort on offense as all nine Missouri players recorded a hit in the game, including six players with at least two hits, as Mizzou scored a season-high 17 runs.
Marquise Doherty tallied his first career multi-RBI game and his first career start in the field.