Clemons speaks out

KANSAS CITY — Breaking his near total silence, ex-MU basketball player Ricky Clemons has told a radio network he stands by accusations caught on jailhouse recordings that he received money from MU coaches.

In the interview, to air today on the James Brown Show on The Sporting News radio network, Clemons also says he’s not surprised that former teammates Rickey Paulding and Arthur Johnson — who Clemons said from jail also got money — have denied it.

Consolidation talk stalled but Floyd says it’s still a go

KANSAS CITY — MU will not lose the position of chancellor, but neither will it begin a search yet for a person to fill the post after Richard Wallace retires.

That was the only solid decision UM system President Elson Floyd announced Thursday during a long-anticipated presentation to curators on the potential consolidation of MU and the UM system’s administrative offices.

Floyd says ‘nightmare’ not a reason to resign

KANSAS CITY — Elson Floyd said Thursday he will not resign as president of the UM system despite being caught in the “whirlwind of controversy” surrounding former Missouri basketball player Ricky Clemons and tapes of Clemons’ jailhouse telephone conversations with Floyd’s wife and the wife of an associate athletic director.

Floyd acknowledged in a news conference preceding Thursday’s meeting of the University of Missouri Board of Curators that he had considered a range of options, including his resignation, following revelations about conversations his wife, Carmento, had with Clemons while the former player was in the Boone County Jail, serving time for assaulting a girlfriend.

County faces shot shortage as flu season comes early

The flu bug that bit Boone County early this year has become more widespread in December, causing a shortage of the injectable vaccines used to combat the virus.

The Columbia/Boone County Department of Health said Thursday that it is out of injectable vaccinations. The department had received 227 reported cases of the flu from area hospitals since Nov. 6. More than 50 cases were reported on Monday and Tuesday.

Millersburg residents protest land farm plans

For more than a year, members of the Millersburg community have been battling plans to treat contaminated soil near their homes in Callaway County, as well as the state officials who would regulate the business. That clash continued Thursday when residents had a chance to speak out at a joint meeting with state regulators from the Department of Natural Resources.

The so-called “land farms” treat petroleum-contaminated soil using natural processes to break down hydrocarbon compounds by spreading the contaminated soils in a thin layer outdoors. The soil is occasionally tilled for aeration or treated with fertilizer and moisture to accelerate the process. Millersburg residents have condemned a partially built land farm near their homes for fear that the contaminated soil could affect health and property values.

All wrapped up and ready to go

Kim Heyes didn’t ask for presents this year. Instead, she wished for her children to have a good Christmas.

With the help of Columbia’s Voluntary Action Center, Heyes is getting her wish.

Accident rates soar on first snow day

Columbia’s first major winter storm of the season, which covered the town with 3 to 5 inches of snow, demonstrated that even experienced winter drivers can be caught off guard by a sudden storm.

On Wednesday, 186 accidents were reported to the Public Safety Joint Communications Center. That number was “certainly more than the normal dozen or so,” accidents the center handles on an average day, said James McNabb, the center’s director.

New center to aid soybean research goals

Establishing the National Center for Soybean Technology at MU will attract scientists from all over the world and could produce research that leads to cures for serious diseases and to more drought-resistant crops.

Dale Ludwig, executive director of the Missouri Soybean Association, made those predictions Thursday at a press conference to announce a $900,000 federal grant secured by U.S. Sen. Kit Bond, R-Mo., that will establish the center.

Jeffries will run for Wilson’s seat

After two decades of Democratic dominance in the 25th District of the Missouri House of Representatives, Republican Joel Jeffries believes he can change history.

Meanwhile, a pair of Democrats hope the district will remain in the donkeys’ turf.

The answer to the question: ’Is it hot in there?’

At Sesame Street Live, everyone has a role to play, but that doesn’t always mean there’s a furry suit involved.

Less than 15 minutes after a seven-hour bus trip from Jonesboro, Ark., Caitlin McIntosh and Heather Shankweiler were sitting in their hotel lobby fulfilling one of those roles: media spokesperson. It’s a job neither of them minds.

Gonzaga will test Missouri

Nonconference matchups such as this give college basketball fans the kind of goose bumps they usually get in March.

After all, No. 3 Missouri and No. 17 Gonzaga have made five straight NCAA Tournament appearances each.

MU adds wheelchair basketball

Columbia State Representative Chuck Graham’s decision to play wheelchair basketball at the University of Illinois changed his life.

His leadership in creating a wheelchair basketball program at MU might change the lives of future disabled athletes.

Rock Bridge seniors adjust to leading roles

Ashley Guy and Melissa White have a lot of shoes to fill: 16, to be exact.

The Rock Bridge girls’ basketball team had eight seniors last year, and four were starters. Guy is the only returning starter, and White is the only other senior.

Transfers have come a long way

For a couple of Missouri transfers, it has been an uphill road to compete in Division I wrestling.

Heavyweight Mike Whitehead is a senior transfer from Southern Oregon. He thought he wasn’t good enough to compete in Division I. This season, he is 8-1 with five pins.

Rastovac receives ‘surprise’ honors

News that she had been selected to the NAIA All-American team shocked Columbia College’s Nikolina Rastovac. Rastovac, a freshman from Laxzarevac, Serbia, didn’t know the award existed until Thursday.

Rastovac is growing accustomed to collecting awards she hadn’t heard of until after she had won them. Her selection as the Region V Setter of the Year in November also surprised her.

Uncle spurs Kewp

When he was 7, Zach Arnold remembers watching his uncle, Phillip Arnold, win two state wrestling titles at Hickman.

“My grandma took me to see him wrestle,” Arnold said. “We were surrounded by family and friends, and I always wanted to wrestle.”

Bruins confident

Although it’s early in the season, the Rock Bridge wrestling team is looking for big wins.

The Bruins will compete in the Truman Tournament this weekend, facing their first opponent at 5 tonight and wrestling again at 10 a.m. Saturday.

Plummetting temperatures have got mid-Missourians looking for food for the birds

The temperature is dropping and birds are flying south for the winter. But what about the birds that stay in Missouri all winter or those that consider Missouri as far south as they’ll go? With the weather turning cold and the natural bird-food supply getting scarce, many Columbians are now gearing up to feed the birds.

Homemade Bird Feeder and Suet recipes from the national bird-feeding society

Personal experience compels MU research

Imagine the embarrassment of not being able to eat a bowl of soup at your neighbor’s, write a check at the store or hold a glass of punch during a friend’s wedding reception, all because your hands are shaking violently.