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THE WEEK'S MOST-READ STORIES: Derrick Washington, conference realignment and U.S. 63 construction

Sunday, September 25, 2011 | 8:00 p.m. CDT

Stories about Derrick Washington, J-turns on U.S. 63, conference realignment and the Missouri Tigers were among the most popular with Missourian readers last week. These are the 10 most-read Missourian staff stories posted last week on ColumbiaMissourian.com, according to Google Analytics data:

  1. A story tracking the trial of Derrick Washington, former captain and starting running back for the Missouri Tigers, got the most attention from visitors to the website. The woman who accused Washington of sexually assaulting her testified that she never actually saw her attacker, but former roommate Lauren Gavin supported her testimony. (2,188 page views)
  2. U.S. 63 — in addition to a new interchange near Columbia Regional Airport — will soon have J-turns instead of crossovers, a point of interest for mid-Missouri drivers who travel that route frequently. The $9.8 million project has already begun. "The J-turns are there to help drivers who don't judge gaps well by providing improved access points," said John Miller, a Missouri Department of Transportation traffic safety engineer. (2,066 page views)
  3. Again, Washington found his way to the most-read list in an article about his conviction Wednesday. The jury found him guilty of deviate sexual assault. He was visibly distraught after the decision was made. He could face up to seven years in prison. (1,967 page views)
  4. Despite reports that Missouri had been invited to join the SEC, a spokesman for the conference said Tuesday that no such offer had been made. The story also noted that the UM System Board of Curators would meet Thursday and receive an update on the Big 12. (1,925 page views)
  5. Missourian sports reporter Harry Plumer wrote a column about how conference realignment would affect fans. He argued that if Missouri were to go to another conference, such as the SEC, fans would lose the excitement of traditional rivalries by being separated from the teams they love to hate. (1,744 page views)
  6. A Columbia police officer who had been on the force for 18 years was fired Wednesday after an internal investigation found he had used excessive force against a man in a holding cell. The man had been pepper-sprayed nine days earlier after resisting arrest. The investigation was conducted regarding an incident caught on tape, which showed an officer shoving the man into a wall. (1,589 page views)
  7. A story about Missouri football players cruising around on scooters caught the attention of many readers. Players such as T.J. Moe, Brad Madison, Beau Brinkley and Corey Sudhoff joined the "scooter gang" to avoid parking tickets and paying a lot of money for gas. (1,444 page views)
  8. After the Pac-12 announced that it would not be expanding this year, Plumer wrote a Q&A to answer readers' burning questions, such as "What now, then?" (1,428 page views)
  9. Residents of Regency Trailer Park met with Mid-Missouri Legal Services and Sixth Ward Councilwoman Barbara Hoppe to discuss the possible rezoning of the property on which they live. Residents of the park are fearful about the possibility of having to move. (1,159 page views)
  10. MU Chancellor Brady Deaton discussed the future of the Big 12, which looked much brighter after the Pac-12's announcement that it would not be expanding. Deaton, who is chairman of the Big 12 board of directors, said the conference still has work to do. One of the biggest issues is revenue sharing. (1,150 page views)

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