Fans, troops to connect

A halftime show of a different kind is in store for fans Saturday at MU’s football game against Texas A&M. A live feed from Baghdad will connect deployed Missouri Guardsmen with the fans at Memorial Stadium.

With a potential attendance of more than 60,000 people, this could be the largest videoconference in history, according to Lt. Col. Thomas Smith.

Families prepare for deployment

Half of the 128th National Guard unit based in Columbia — 248 members — is preparing to leave for Fort Sill, Okla., on Tuesday. Members of the artillery unit must report to the Armory north of Columbia on Sunday.

As the one-year mark for mass troop deployment to Iraq approaches, the U.S. government is preparing to relieve soldiers who will soon complete their tour of duty.

State to question tax credits

JEFFERSON CITY — The Missouri Attorney General’s office said Wednesday it is investigating allegations that taxpayer dollars are paying for equipment for businesses that exist only on paper.

“We will investigate this matter without fear or favor,” said Ted Ardini of the Attorney General’s office. He made the announcement to the Joint Committee on Tax Policy. The investigation of these “phantom” businesses is focused on the Rebuilding Communities Tax Credit Program, which offers tax credits for Missouri companies purchasing technical equipment such as computers and medical devices. The program provides tax credits for up to 40 percent of the equipment costs for eligible businesses. The program is designed to attract high-tech companies to poor communities.

The buck stops here

Deer hunter Ray Parsons hopes to harvest as many does as he can this firearms deer season. Parsons bought two bonus tags for himself and his grandson Chris Snell on Tuesday at the Wal-Mart Supercenter. If he fills those, he said, he’ll come back and buy more.

“I buy all the tags I can get, and I usually fill them,” said Parsons, one of many hunters browsing Wal-Mart’s hunting section in advance of the 11-day deer season that begins Saturday morning.

Role reversal

In the Adams family, everyone is learning tae kwon do at Hockman’s ATA Black Belt Academy on Buttonwood Drive.

The children — Jordan, 13, Jackson, 12, Taylor, 11, and Becca, 8 — started classes about three years ago. Their father, John, has taken lessons for a little more than a year; their mother, Krista, for 2 1/2 years.

Semifinal crucial step to Cougars

For Columbia College, the Region V semifinal has been the showstopper.

John Klein, in his fourth season as Cougars men’s soccer coach, has three conference titles and has never lost more than eight games in a season. Ultimately, he says he wants to send the team to the national tournament, but for three straight seasons his team’s hopes have abruptly ended in the semifinal.

Scientist gets in close to her animal work

Temple Grandin has been known to get down on hands and knees to see why pigs and cattle balk at going up a ramp before they’re slaughtered. To understand what the animals are thinking, she puts herself in their place. “For a pig’s-eye view, you’ve got to get down really low,” she said.

One-third of all cattle slaughter plants in the United States use equipment designed by Grandin, an animal science professor at Colorado State University who has made a career out of making slaughter plants more humane. The United States processes 100,000 cattle every day.

Jaguars hope to avoid turnovers

Turnovers cost teams wins, and perhaps nobody can echo that sentiment more than Paul Day.

Day, Fort Zumwalt West’s coach, has seen his team commit 30 turnovers. The Jaguars (4-6) improved dramatically in Class 6 District 5 play when they committed four.The Jaguars, who are minus 13 in turnovers, will try to hold on to the ball when they play Hickman (7-3) in the Class 6 quarterfinals at 1:30 p.m. on Saturday.

Four Kewps make choices

Head over to the MU Student Recreation Center and you are likely to find Hickman guards Jodi and Amy Bolerjack shooting around as their father, Paul Bolerjack, stands under the basket and feeds the ball back to his daughters.

Jodi and Amy Bolerjack each make 1,200 shots a day. On weekends, the twins will spend up to four hours shooting around. Adding in a few misses here and there, Jodi estimates she probably shoots 1,500 shots each day.

Missouri counting on recruits

Signing day took on more importance than usual for the Missouri women’s basketball team Tuesday.

With five seniors, including four expected to be mainstays in the starting lineup, the Tigers began to look to the future by securing letters of intent from three high school seniors.

Garth Avenue sparks safe crossing debate

Every school day for the past seven years, Charlie Knipp has stood on the northwest corner of Parkade Boulevard and Garth Avenue in front of Parkade Elementary School.

With a friendly greeting and a warm smile, he shuttles kids back and forth across both streets on their way to and from school. Cars honk as they pass; he waves.

State provides warmth for low-income families

JEFFERSON CITY — Loretta Roarke prefers not to rely on others. When her grandson offered, “Grandma, I’m going to get you a wheelchair,” she shot back, “Oh no you ain’t!”

However, when it comes to paying her utilities, Roarke has little choice but to accept help. She relies on Central Missouri Counties’ Human Development Corporation to pay her light and gas bill.

Cougars maintain intensity

There was no slow start or early jitters. The Columbia College men’s basketball team was good from start to finish on Wednesday.

The Cougars defeated Missouri Valley 83-63 in their home opener at Southwell Gymnasium.

Mayor hopes new timers will help holiday shoppers

Downtown will soon see an increase of new crosswalk timers just in time for the influx of pedestrians that comes with the holiday shopping season.

The timers count down the time pedestrians have left to cross the street when the light is red. Mayor Darwin Hindman, who spearheaded the effort, said theywould help improve downtown’s image as friendly for walking.

Mayor weighs election

Fourth Ward Councilman Jim Loveless has decided he will run for re-election in April, but Mayor Darwin Hindman and Third Ward Councilman Bob Hutton, whose terms also expire next year, have yet to decide whether to run again.

Loveless, who filed the paperwork for his candidacy Nov. 3, said the city’s continuing traffic problems prompted him to run again.

Mathletes in action

Find the sum of the solutions to 2x + 6x + 50.

This is not the usual question running through a high school student’s head at 8:30 a.m. on a Saturday. But 44 students from four different high schools sat with legs shaking and pencils tapping, scratching their heads as they answered questions like this during a day of competition at the regional level of the Great Plains Math League High School Contest held on the MU campus on Nov. 1.

Preseason awards praise Paulding

The buzz surrounding Ricky Paulding is growing louder every day.

Named to the Wooden and Naismith Award watch lists, the Missouri guard is on everyone’s radar screen for player of the year honors. On Wednesday, Paulding earned a spot on the Associated Press preseason All-American list.

Missouri can’t stop Wildcats

As a young team, Missouri is learning how to finish matches off. It still has a ways to go.

Kansas State rallied to defeat Missouri 27-30, 19-30, 31-29, 30-20, 15-9 at Hearnes Center. No. 5 Kansas St. leads the Big 12 Conference and has won seven straight matches against Missouri (16-9, 9-7).

Setting favors Tigers

Two factors favor the Missouri football team against Texas A&M this weekend. The Tigers have no ranking in front of their name, and they are playing on Faurot Field.

MU is 1-3 when ranked in the Associated Press Top 25 poll and 0-3 against Big 12 Conference teams on the road.

Tigers’ recruits Grimes, Horton sign

Wednesday marked the beginning of the early signing period for college recruits, and two of Missouri coach Quin Snyder’s four recruits have signed on.

Kalen Grimes, a power forward from Hazelwood Central High in St. Louis, signed with the Tigers at a press conference at the school Wednesday morning. Guard Jason Horton signed at Cedar Hill High in surburban Dallas.