After mounting anticipation, Missouri revealed new uniforms for five sports at halftime of the Black and Gold spring football game Saturday. Earlier in the week, the men's basketball team picked up prized Connecticut transfer Alex Oriakhi.
Missouri football holds Black and Gold spring game, uniforms ceremony
More than a month of spring practices concluded on Saturday with the annual Black and Gold spring game. Though many starters, including quarterback James Franklin, sat out of the game with injuries, around 18,000 fans attended.
The school's move to the Southeastern Conference and the unveiling of the new uniforms probably accounted for the bigger crowd (about 10,000 attended in 2011). At halftime, the new football, men's and women's basketball, and women's soccer and volleyball uniforms were revealed. The Missourian aggregated fans' reactions on Twitter to the new uniforms.
Missouri worked with Nike for 18 months to develop the uniforms, which emphasize the Mizzou nickname and the oval tiger head logo more than the previous ones.
Think you know the historical progression of the Missouri football uniforms? Test your knowledge of Missouri football uniforms with this interactive quiz.
Men's basketball team snags Oriakhi
Alex Oriakhi, a 6-foot-9 forward who played for three years at Connecticut, chose to transfer to Missouri on Friday.
Usually transfers have to sit out for one year, but Oriakhi does not because Connecticut is banned from the 2013 NCAA Tournament after several years of below-standard academic progress rates.
Oriakhi averaged 6.8 points and 4.8 rebounds last year and 9.6 points and 8.7 rebounds the season before, when Connecticut won the national championship. He said he wanted to join a team that needed a forward, and he and Missouri point guard Phil Pressey have played together before.
Earlier in the week, assistant coach Isaac Chew left to take an assistant coaching job at Illinois. He is originally from Chicago.
Baseball, softball teams stumble
The week began well enough for the Missouri softball team. It moved up in the national rankings to No. 9, and senior outfielder Ashley Fleming was named the national player of the week. She also won the Big 12 player of the week award, and Chelsea Thomas won the Big 12 pitcher of the week award. Then it beat Northern Iowa on Wednesday.
The past weekend, though, Missouri dropped two of three games to Texas Tech at home. The Tigers fell to 32-8 overall, and 10-5 in the Big 12. They trail No. 4 Texas and No. 8 Oklahoma in the conference standings.
Missouri lost 2-0 in the first game on Friday, as Texas Tech pitcher Brittany Talley only gave up one hit.
Because of the stormy weather forecast for Sunday, the Tigers and Red Raiders played a doubleheader on Saturday. An umpire collided with players on two different occasions, and apparently it wasn't the only time the officiating crew messed up during the series. Missourian reporter James Ayello wrote that the umpires couldn't stay out of the unwanted spotlight all weekend. Missouri lost the first game 5-4 but avoided a sweep by winning the second game 4-1 on a walk-off home run by sophomore Mackenzie Sykes.
The baseball team, on the other hand, could not avoid a sweep at Oklahoma. The Sooners beat the Tigers 5-4 on Sunday, dropping Missouri to 18-17 overall and 3-9 in the Big 12.
On Friday, the teams had meant to play a doubleheader. Then a tornado passed through the town, landing on the ground 3.5 miles away from the baseball stadium and causing some damage. No one was seriously injured. The first game was delayed a half hour after it started at 3 p.m and didn't resume until after 7 p.m. Oklahoma won 6-5, and then 8-4 on Saturday.
Earlier in the week, Missouri played Illinois at Busch Stadium, home of the St. Louis Cardinals. The Tigers won 5-4.
Track, golf freshmen lead teams at Columbia events
The Missouri men's golf team won its second consecutive Mizzou Intercollegiate title Tuesday at the Club at Old Hawthorne, and freshman Ryan Zech won his first individual title by shooting 8-under-par in three rounds.
In the Tom Botts Invitational on Saturday, freshman thrower Kristen Peoples earned the Female Outstanding Performance award at the event after winning the hammer throw and shot put and placing second in the discus.
The Missouri women’s track and field team won the six-team event, while the men's team finished second behind Iowa.
Three women's basketball players granted release from team
All three players just finished their sophomore seasons with the team. Missouri finished in last place in the Big 12 Conference this season with a 2-16 conference record.