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Posted: Saturday, July 7, 2012 12:00 am

COLUMBIA, Mo. (AP) — Perhaps the only downer in Missouri’s jump to the Southeastern Conference is the indefinite interruption of the feisty border conflict with Kansas.

Left behind in the Big 12, the Jayhawks were left feeling abandoned, jilted.

Men’s basketball coach Bill Self said several times last season that he couldn’t see scheduling the Tigers anytime soon.

There seem to be no hard feelings anywhere else, including the big city just down the road that used to benefit from the Missouri-Kansas rivalry.

Missouri athletic director Mike Alden took delight this past week announcing that a $30 million gift that jump-started the school’s $200 million facilities facelift came from Kansas City.

“I thought it was pretty special to know that coming straight out of Kansas City was the second-largest gift to ever be made in the history of the University of Missouri,” Alden said. “Certainly the move to the SEC was something that created quite a bit of enthusiasm and support.”

Missouri’s move to the SEC became official on Sunday, ending an association with the Big 12 and its previous incarnations dating to 1907. There’s no looking back. An SEC logo already adorns midfield.

The campus is sleepy this time of year. Yet, there’s unprecedented excitement about the inaugural year in a league that has recently dominated the top tier of college football in particular.

A Tiger Town initiative endorsed by the Columbia Tribune proposes closing downtown to vehicles and relaxing the city’s open container policy to accommodate “increasing hordes of Southeastern Conference visitors” and create a “pedestrian downtown party zone.”

Tickets are scarce for the inaugural SEC game against Georgia in September, just the second meeting between the schools. Alabama comes to Columbia in October.

During a summer men’s basketball teleconference several days ago, the new guys had the welcome mat out.

“Clearly, last year they were one of the top five teams from start to finish,” Florida’s Billy Donovan said of the Tigers. “Some of them are gone but others are coming, and I’m a big, big fan of Phil Pressey.”

John Calipari, coach of national champion Kentucky, believes the new SEC, which is also adding Texas A&M, will send half of its teams to the NCAA tournament.

“And that’s going to be from here on out,” Calipari said.

So rather than Oklahoma and Texas, the top-end competition in football will be Alabama and LSU. Or Arkansas, where there is also an attractive rivalry possibility in men’s basketball given that Razorbacks coach Mike Anderson led the Tigers for four seasons.

“Now it’s just gotten a little more interesting,” Anderson said. “They bring a great deal to the league. The whole athletic program, what Mike Alden has done, has been tremendous. and I’m proud to have been a part of it.”

Football coach Gary Pinkel has characterized the move as “mammoth.” He is fired up about a renovation project that will add 6,000 seats and luxury suites, along with other improvements that should make it easier to sell high school prospects that Missouri is a destination school.

The boost in attendance to about 76,000, in anticipation of increased demand relating to the move, would still be 10th in the SEC. But it makes a statement nonetheless.

“It’s great for many reasons but it’s also huge for recruiting,” Pinkel said. “Players want to go to a place where they’re going to be the best, where they have excellent facilities, as good as anyone in the country. That’s what we’re going to have.”

What Missouri had before now was instability and a feeling of second-class citizenship in a conference dominated by Texas.

Missouri and Texas A&M are leaving one year after Colorado and Nebraska jumped ship. The Big 12 is adding TCU and West Virginia to remain at 10 members.

The Tigers will compete in the East division along with Florida, Georgia, Kentucky, South Carolina, Tennessee and Vanderbilt.

The huge benefit to the convincing case for switching is an influx of cash. The SEC distributed a record $18.3 million to its 12 schools last year.

Missouri is spending in anticipation, pouring money into improvements, with the initial round also including facility upgrades for softball, baseball, tennis and golf.

“We made a commitment early on to be the best in all that we could be, academically as well as athletically,” Chancellor Brady Deaton said. “It’s a proud moment when you can hold your head high and say we’re doing it right at Missouri in every day.”

Both major sports appear ready for the move.

Pinkel has taken the Tigers to a bowl game the last seven seasons, and eight times overall, most in school history.

Last year’s senior class finished with the highest four-year victory total in school history, and there’s been a solid run of first-round NFL draft picks in recent years including Eagles wide receiver Jeremy Maclin, Jaguars quarterback Blaine Gabbert and 49ers defensive end Aldon Smith.

Haith’s first team was the surprise of the Big 12, and the victory total the last four seasons is another school best. Haith played at Kentucky and Mississippi State when he was at the University of Miami, so he has a bit of familiarity with the new league.

One of the downsides for the northernmost SEC member is an increased travel budget. No more going Greyhound.

In Haith’s first season here, there were five bus trips. In season two, there will be none.

“We’ve got a little bit longer distance to go where we’re playing, and they’re really good,” Haith said.

© 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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Area Scoreboard

Football

Week 10 Schedule Playoff Round 1

Friday, Oct. 24

Washington at Battle, 7 p.m.

Kennedy at Borgia, 7 p.m.

Pacific at Union, 7 p.m.

St. Clair at Westminster

Priory at Sullivan

Salem at St. James

Southern Boone at Owensville

Transportation and Law at Hermann

Moberly at Warrenton

Wright City at O’Fallon Christian

Friday, Oct. 17

Francis Howell N 24, Washington 20

Westminster 35, Borgia 14

*Union 35, Hermann 32

*St. Clair 26, Owensville 12

*Pacific 34, St. James 22

Helias 56, Sullivan 3

Ft. Zumwalt East 42, Warrenton 0

*Clopton-Elsberry 20, Wright City 0

Saturday, Oct. 18

Cuba at Hogan Prep    2 p.m.

Friday, Oct. 10

Holt 21, Washington 14

Borgia 42, St. Clair 7

Union 68, St. James 20

Hermann 32, Pacific 24 (OT)

Sullivan 38, Owensville 12

Orchard Farm 28, Warrenton 3

Wright City 22, North Callaway 18

Father Tolton 35, Cuba 0

Friday, Oct. 3

*Ft. Zumwalt East 62, Washington 35

*Borgia 49, St. Mary's 11

*Union 56, Owensville 16

*Hermann 38, St. Clair 0

Festus 39, Pacific 14

*Sullivan 40, St. James 10

Cuba 46, Lincoln 38

*Warrenton 47, Winfield 6

*Van-Far 24, Wright City 18

Friday, Sept. 26

Union 54, Washington 14

*Borgia 45, Duchesne 7

*St. Clair 57, St. James 55 (2 OT)

*Pacific 40, Owensville 34

*Hermann 24, Sullivan 12

Cuba 74, Liberty Wentzville 7

Parkway West 20, Warrenton 7

Mark Twain 32, Wright City 18

Softball

Sectional Games

Wednesday, Oct. 15

Bolivar 17, Sullivan 2

Mexico 5, Warrenton 4

Thursday, Oct. 16

Pacific 12, Rosati-Kain 0

Saturday, Oct. 18

Quarterfinal — De Soto 5, Pacific 2

District Tournaments

Softball

Class 4 District 4

Wednesday, Oct. 8

(4) Northwest 11, (5) Rolla 3

Saturday, Oct. 11

(1) Lafayette 3, Northwest 1

(2) Eureka 4, (3) Washington 0

Monday, Oct. 13

Championship — Eureka 5, Lafayette 0

Class 3 District 3

At Lutheran South

Wednesday, Oct. 8

(4) Affton 3, (5) Bishop DuBourg 2

(3) Pacific 21, (6) Bayless 0

Sunday, Oct. 12

(1) Lutheran South 11, Affton 1

Pacific 1, (2) Notre Dame 0

Championship — Pacific 2, Lutheran South 1

Class 3 District 7

At St. Dominic

Wednesday, Oct. 8

(4) Borgia 9, (5) Wentzville Liberty 8

(3) Winfield 15, (6) O’Fallon Christian 1

Saturday, Oct. 11

At Borgia

(1) St. Dominic 12, Borgia 3

(2) Warrenton 11, Winfield 2

Championship — Warrenton 1, St. Dominic 0

Class 3 District 9

At Sullivan

Wednesday, Oct. 8

(4) St. James 12, (5) Owensville 3

(3) Sullivan 11, (6) St. Clair 1

Saturday, Oct. 11

At Union High School

St. James 10, (1) Union 5

Sullivan 5 (2) Salem 4 (8 innings)

Championship — Sullivan 11, St. James 6

Class 2 District 10

At New Bloomfield

Wednesday, Oct. 8

(4) New Bloomfield 5, (5) Belle 0

(3) South Callaway 9, (6) Hermann 0

Saturday, Oct. 11

South Callaway 7, (2) Linn 2

(1) Fatima 6, New Bloomfield 1

Championship — Fatima 7, South Callaway 4

Class 1 District 4

At Community R6, Laddonia

Wednesday, Oct. 8

(4) Wellsville-Middletown 8, (5) New Haven 2

(3) Van-Far 4, (6) Community R6 2

Saturday, Oct. 11

(1) Clopton 13, Wellsville 0

(2) Silex 10, Van-Far 0

Championship — Silex 3, Clopton 0

Volleyball

Monday, Oct. 13

De Soto def. St. Clair, 25-20, 25-14

Warrenton at Union    5:30 p.m.

Ft. Zumwalt North def.  Pacific, 25-19, 25-21 

Fatima at New Haven    5:30 p.m.

Owensville at Cuba    5:30 p.m.

Borgia def. Hermann, 25-15, 25-11

Tuesday, Oct. 14

Panthers Home School at Crosspoint    4:30 p.m.

*Washington def. Ft. Zumwalt East, 25-23, 25-10

*Pacific def. St. Clair, 25-20, 25-20

*Sullivan def. Union, 25-14, 25-22

*St. James at Hermann    5:30 p.m.

*New Havent def. Owensville

*Rosati-Kain def. Borgia, 25-22, 25-21

Wednesday, Oct. 15

ECC at Culver-Stockton JV    6:30 p.m.

Thursday, Oct. 16

*Washington def. Ft. Zumwalt S, 25-10, 25-12

Hillsboro def. St. Clair, 25-12, 25-21

Villa Duchesne def. Borgia, 23-25, 25-13, 26-24

Friday, Oct. 17

ECC at Illinois Central Tny    TBA

Saturday, Oct. 18

Crosspoint at MAC All-Star Match    TBA

ECC at Illinois Central Tny    TBA

District Tournaments

Class 4 District 3

At Rockwood Summit

Monday, Oct. 20

(4) Eureka vs. (5) Pacific, 5 p.m.

(2) Northwest vs. (7) Parkway South, 6:15 p.m.

(3) Washington vs. (6) Rockwood Summit, 7:30 p.m.

Tuesday, Oct. 21

(1) Lafayette vs. Eureka-Pacific winner, 5 p.m.

Northwest-Parkway South winner vs. Washington-Rockwood Summit winner, 6:15 p.m.

Championship, 7:30 p.m.

Class 3 District 8

At Union

Monday, Oct. 20

(4) Union vs. (5) St. Clair, 5 p.m.

(2) Sullivan vs. (7) Salem, 6:15 p.m.

(3) Owensville vs. (6) St. James, 7:30 p.m.

Tuesday, Oct. 21

(1) Borgia vs. Union-St. Clair winner, 5 p.m.

Sullivan-Salem winner vs. Owensville-St. James winner, 6:15 p.m.

Championship, 7:30 p.m.

Class 2 District 6

At Lutheran St. Charles

Monday, Oct. 20

(4) Barat vs. (5) Wright City, 5 p.m.

(2) Hermann vs. (7) Bowling Green, 6:30 p.m.

(3) Whitfield vs. (6) Montgomery County, 8 p.m.

Tuesday, Oct. 21

(1) Lutheran St. Charles vs. Barat-Wright City winner, 5 p.m.

Hermann-Bowling Green winner vs. Whitfield-Montgomery Co. winner, 6:30 p.m.

Championship, 8 p.m.

Class 1 District 9

At Calvary Lutheran, Jefferson City

Monday, Oct. 20

(4) Smithton vs. (5) Otterville, 6 p.m.

(3) Chamois vs. (6) Bunceton, 7:30 p.m.

Tuesday, Oct. 21

(1) New Haven vs. Smithton-Otterville winner, 6 p.m.

(2) Calvary Lutheran vs. Chamois-Bunceton winner, 7:30 p.m.

Thursday, Oct. 23

Championship, 7 p.m.

Boys Soccer

Thursday, Oct. 9

St. Louis United at Fulton SA    4:15 p.m.

Crosspoint at Thomas Jefferson    4:30 p.m.

*Ft. Zumwalt South 5, Washington 1

Perryville 2, Borgia 0

Saturday, Oct. 11

Troy 2, Washington 1

*ECC 2, Jefferson 1

MAC Tournament    TBA

Monday, Oct. 13

Pacific at Ft. Zumwalt N    4:30 p.m.

St. Clair at Hillsboro    5 p.m.

De Soto at Sullivan    5 p.m.

Tuesday, Oct. 14

ECC at Lewis & Clark    4 p.m.

Fulton SA at Valley Park    4 p.m.

*Ft. Zumwalt E 5, Washington 2

*Union 5, Sullivan 1

St. Clair at Festus    5 p.m.

Bayless at Pacific    5 p.m.

*Duchesne 2, Borgia 0

Crosspoint at Invitational Tournament    TBA

Wednesday, Oct. 15

*Holt 2, Washington 1

Crosspoint at Invitational Tournament    TBA

Thursday, Oct. 16

*Pacific 3, Union 1

Borgia 1, O'Fallon Christian 0

Belton at Sullivan    5:30 p.m.

Fatima at St. James    5 p.m.

Crosspoint at Invitational Tournament    TBA

Friday, Oct. 17

ECC 2, Missouri Baptist JV 1

Barat at Fulton SA    4:30 p.m.

*Washington at Ft. Zumwalt N    5 p.m.

Crosspoint at Invitational Tournament    TBA

Saturday, Oct. 18

Washington 1, Borgia 0 (Penalty kicks)

Cross Country

Saturday, Oct. 18

Borgia Inv, 9 a.m. Varsity races at 9:45 a.m. (boys), 10:15 a.m. (girls)

Boys Swimming

Friday, Oct. 17

Borgia at Ft. Zumwalt N    3:30 p.m.

Saturday, Oct. 18

Borgia at Ft. Zumwalt W Inv    10:30 a.m.

*Conference Games

Racing News