Although Missouri football lacks a bit in tradition compared to its SEC siblings, Memorial Stadium offers plenty of atmosphere. Driving along Stadium Boulevard, parked cars are lined up for miles creating a pathway to the stadium. Welcoming fans into the arena is a large statue of Don Faurot for whom the field is named after. Faurot coached at Missouri and left a great legacy during the mid 1900s. However, the fans have seen mounds of frustration over the years and their mood reflects that.
After the band spells out “MIZZOU” and “TIGERS” out on the field, a “MIZZOURAH!” cheer is exclaimed in booming unison. The team charges out onto the field through billows of smoke with a canon sounding Truman the Tiger’s appearance on a vintage 1950s fire truck. Truman rolls over to the students while a large flag bearing the letter “M” is body-passed into the student section. There aren’t bad seats in Memorial Stadium – many fans even opt to lay out a blanket and sit on the hill at the north end of the stadium. It is on this hill that rests a college football landmark – drawn out in large white rocks is the letter “M” that’s the beacon of FaurotField Field. Many folks sitting on the hill find a rock to sit on undaunted by the discomfort that it may provide. The hill contributes to the coziness of this old venue that has seen a lot of ups and downs. The fans are generally cheerful even though momentous seasons are not plentiful.
Missouri’s induction into the SEC has seen some success with a trophy case that boasts an SEC east title. But, that has only whetted the appetite for more. Still, one can hear fans whistling along to the fight song that plays over the radio in the Tiger Team store connected to the stadium. As the third quarter ends, fans sway to the Missouri Waltz, while continuing to form a bond with their university and state. There is an innocence to these fans who haven’t seen a league title in years. Not to say that losses are not coupled with disappointment, but it doesn’t appear to morph into rudeness toward opponents. The entire experience at Missouri is pleasant, and the stadium typifies old-fashioned and classic college football.