COLUMBIA — The mention of the U.S. president elicited booing during a halftime ceremony at the Missouri-Tennessee game.
During halftime, new members of the Missouri National Guard were being sworn in on the field of Memorial Stadium, said team spokesman Chad Moller.
Part of the oath the service members took reads, "I will obey the orders of the president of the United States." During a pause after that line was read, members of the crowd could clearly be heard booing and jeering, said LeMari Porter, an MU student present at the game.
MU student Julia Bosley was sitting in the general admission section on the hill during the game. She said she thinks the man standing behind her, who appeared to be a Missouri fan was the first to boo.
"He started booing, and then it just sort of spread around the stadium," Bosley said. "I was sitting with my boyfriend's family, and we all just turned around and looked at him in disbelief."
Bosley said no one said anything to stop the man, and several people nearby joined in.
Some people said they found the display inappropriate.
Tennessee native Madi Kirk was sitting in the visitors section and heard booing from all sides of the stadium.
"I felt like it was a very serious time and for good reason," Kirk said. "I thought the booing was disrespectful and that it was the wrong time for it."
MU sophomore Jacob Bogage echoed that sentiment.
"I can't even imagine what that ceremony means to someone and having that as a memory is unconscionable," Bogage said.
Moller said he did not hear any of the reported booing and could not comment on it because he'd spent halftime in the locker room.
This is not the first time mid-Missouri has publicly expressed its distaste for President Barack Obama.
This booing at the mention of the president comes less than three months after a rodeo clown in Sedalia mockingly donned a mask of Barack Obama's face at the Missouri State Fair.
However, presidential booing has been known to cross the political aisle. Former President George W. Bush was booed at a Washington Nationals game as he walked out to throw the first pitch in 2008.