Report: Border War nearing a return to the gridiron

1 month 3 weeks 4 days ago Friday, April 10 2020 Apr 10, 2020 Friday, April 10, 2020 10:10:00 AM CDT April 10, 2020 in News
By: Columbia Missourian, Adam Cole
Missouri tight end Chase Coffman (45) leaps over Kansas safety Darrell Stuckey (25) to score a touchdown during the fourth quarter of a Nov. 29, 2008, game in Kansas City. Charlie Riedel/The Associated Press

COLUMBIA - The Border War may soon be making its return to the gridiron.

Missouri and the University of Kansas are currently working on a four-game football series, as first reported by PowerMizzou's Gabe DeArmond Thursday.

Several details, including locations, years played, and ticket information, are still unclear, but this series doesn’t come as a massive surprise.

Missouri announced Oct. 21 that the rivalry would be returning to the hardwood, with its men’s basketball program playing the Jayhawks once in each of the next six seasons. The announcement marked the return of a series that Kansas leads 172-95.

About a week later, athletic director Jim Sterk said he hoped that a deal would get done for the football programs to play by the end of the calendar year.

While the timespan of this series is unclear, the Tigers do have their nonconference opponents scheduled through the 2025 season. However, it’s possible Missouri could rearrange some matchups to play Kansas sooner.

As of 3 p.m. Thursday, the Missouri Athletic Department had "no news to report" on the series.

Overall, the Tigers lead the series with the Jayhawks 57-54-9. It is the fifth-most played matchup in college football, even with its nine-year hiatus, and prior to 2011, the teams played for 93 consecutive seasons.

The matchups will mark the first time the football programs have been pitted against each other since 2011, when the Tigers won 24-10 at Arrowhead Stadium in Kansas City.

Since the 2011 game, the Tigers have seen significantly more success than their Kansas counterparts.

The Jayhawks are 16-80 since they last played Missouri, with just five conference wins and as many head coaches. The Tigers are 58-44 since that point.

Both programs also have fairly new faces at the helm, with former national champion and LSU head coach Les Miles heading into year two in Lawrence, and the Tigers hiring Eli Drinkwitz in December.

Mark Godich, an editor at The Athletic, penned the book “Tigers versus Jayhawks: From the Civil War to the Battle for #1,” which chronicles the rivalry all the way back to its pre-Civil War roots. He said the rivalry is one of the most unappreciated in college sports.

“People that don’t understand the history kind of roll their eyes when they hear Kansas-Missouri versus Alabama-Auburn or Michigan-Ohio State or Texas-Oklahoma,” he said. “People just don’t know the depth of it and the hatred that’s built up over the years.”

Godich also thinks factors like location or program prominence won’t matter much once the rivalry starts back up.

“From a football standpoint, they played for years and years where both teams were just not any good, and the hatred was still there; the rivalry was still there,” Godich said. “I think we’ve shown over the years that fans from both sides will support the rivalry, even when one or both of the programs is bad.”

Former Missouri tight end Martin Rucker, who played for the Tigers from 2004-07, said the matchup with the Jayhawks was never “just another regular season game.”

“You talk about, ‘No game’s more important than the other,’ and, ‘You just focus on the next Saturday,’” he said. “But that’s one of those games that you circle on your calendar for four years from the time you step on campus.”

Rucker played in arguably the most prominent Border War matchup ever, when the No. 3 Tigers toppled the No. 2 Jayhawks in Nov. 2007. It cemented Missouri as the No. 1 team in the nation, and Rucker scored the opening touchdown.

“You always want to score in big games, and to score the first touchdown in such an important game and it being against KU was a dream come true,” he said.

Even when the programs weren’t elite, the rivalry still meant a great deal. Former Missouri coach Bob Stull said the matchup was one he always emphasized. He even bet the hair on his upper lip on it in 1990.

“I had a mustache at the time and I said, ‘If we win this game, I’ll shave my mustache,’” Stull said.

The Tigers went on to beat the Jayhawks 31-21 in Lawrence, and Stull still remembers Steve Martin, a defensive lineman, running up to him with a razor postgame.

“I said, ‘No way, I’ll take that,’” he said, chuckling.

Rucker said he was excited when he read Thursday’s reports of the Border War renewal. He was also surprised.

“I never thought that KU would have the guts to play us again,” he said.

More News

Grid
List
KANSAS CITY — Kansas City Mayor Quinton Lucas says the city is making sweeping changes in police procedures... More >>
1 hour ago Thursday, June 04 2020 Jun 4, 2020 Thursday, June 04, 2020 9:52:00 PM CDT June 04, 2020 in News
COLUMBIA - Boone County reported a second death from COVID-19 Wednesday. The first death in the county was... More >>
6 hours ago Thursday, June 04 2020 Jun 4, 2020 Thursday, June 04, 2020 5:10:42 PM CDT June 04, 2020 in News
JEFFERSON CITY- As local leaders pick up the pieces and chart a path forward to deal with the widespread financial... More >>
6 hours ago Thursday, June 04 2020 Jun 4, 2020 Thursday, June 04, 2020 4:58:00 PM CDT June 04, 2020 in News
JEFFERSON CITY- 300 members of the Missouri National Guard were deployed to Washington, D.C. on Thursday to help local authorities... More >>
6 hours ago Thursday, June 04 2020 Jun 4, 2020 Thursday, June 04, 2020 4:41:00 PM CDT June 04, 2020 in News
COLUMBIA – While people are marching and chanting across the world to fight against racism, University of Missouri’s Black students... More >>
6 hours ago Thursday, June 04 2020 Jun 4, 2020 Thursday, June 04, 2020 4:34:00 PM CDT June 04, 2020 in News
COLUMBIA - The oncology clinic at MU Women's and Children's hospital won't close after all, several sources told KOMU 8... More >>
7 hours ago Thursday, June 04 2020 Jun 4, 2020 Thursday, June 04, 2020 4:08:00 PM CDT June 04, 2020 in News
COLUMBIA - A petition to remove the Thomas Jefferson statue from the University of Missouri quad is gaining momentum with... More >>
8 hours ago Thursday, June 04 2020 Jun 4, 2020 Thursday, June 04, 2020 2:25:00 PM CDT June 04, 2020 in News
COLUMBIA — As state and commercial testing is more available for the Missourians, the number of confirmed cases is rising.... More >>
9 hours ago Thursday, June 04 2020 Jun 4, 2020 Thursday, June 04, 2020 2:00:00 PM CDT June 04, 2020 in News
JEFFERSON CITY - Students will be back in classrooms this fall after Lincoln University announced earlier this week that they... More >>
10 hours ago Thursday, June 04 2020 Jun 4, 2020 Thursday, June 04, 2020 12:31:00 PM CDT June 04, 2020 in News
MINNEAPOLIS— NBC News is streaming George Floyd's memorial service at 1 p.m. Central Time. Floyd died in police custody... More >>
10 hours ago Thursday, June 04 2020 Jun 4, 2020 Thursday, June 04, 2020 12:28:29 PM CDT June 04, 2020 in News
(CNN) -- Most of Google's US workforce has been working remotely since March due to the coronavirus. And last month,... More >>
11 hours ago Thursday, June 04 2020 Jun 4, 2020 Thursday, June 04, 2020 11:30:08 AM CDT June 04, 2020 in A Brighter Tomorrow
KANSAS CITY (AP) — Civil rights organizations on Wednesday called for the resignation of Kansas City Police Chief Rick Smith,... More >>
14 hours ago Thursday, June 04 2020 Jun 4, 2020 Thursday, June 04, 2020 8:23:02 AM CDT June 04, 2020 in News
COLUMBIA - The MU Faculty Council voted against the recommendation to start the fall semester a week early at its... More >>
16 hours ago Thursday, June 04 2020 Jun 4, 2020 Thursday, June 04, 2020 7:21:00 AM CDT June 04, 2020 in News
COOPER COUNTY - One man is dead after crashing his ATV in Cooper County on Wednesday night. According to... More >>
16 hours ago Thursday, June 04 2020 Jun 4, 2020 Thursday, June 04, 2020 6:55:00 AM CDT June 04, 2020 in News
As COVID-19 continues to spread, KOMU 8 will continue to update you about the impacts in the community. You... More >>
17 hours ago Thursday, June 04 2020 Jun 4, 2020 Thursday, June 04, 2020 6:19:00 AM CDT June 04, 2020 in News
ST. LOUIS — St. Louis County Executive Sam Page on Wednesday asked protesters who didn't wear masks or socially distance... More >>
1 day ago Wednesday, June 03 2020 Jun 3, 2020 Wednesday, June 03, 2020 9:53:18 PM CDT June 03, 2020 in News
COLUMBIA - Over the past week, the Columbia community has created lists of local black-owned businesses to support all over... More >>
1 day ago Wednesday, June 03 2020 Jun 3, 2020 Wednesday, June 03, 2020 6:02:00 PM CDT June 03, 2020 in News
COLUMBIA - The oncology clinic at the MU Women and Children's Hospital will be closing on July 31. Families of... More >>
1 day ago Wednesday, June 03 2020 Jun 3, 2020 Wednesday, June 03, 2020 2:25:00 PM CDT June 03, 2020 in Continuous News
Columbia, MO
Broken Clouds 70°
12am 72°
1am 71°
2am 71°
3am 71°