Questions of character

When Michael Cooper decided to turn his home into a business on an acre of scenic Missouri River property in 1987, he had fairly modest ambitions. He envisioned a simple place where fishermen could gather for boat club meetings and buy bait and cold beer.

Cooper didn’t stop at a clubhouse. Working closely with government agencies, he obtained grants to add gas services, build a boat dock and put in a new stairway. He opened a campground, added Thai and barbecue kitchens and provided a weekend venue where local bands could play as the sun set along the river.

Back on their feet

Gary Pinkel knew his team needed to improve after a disappointing game at Troy.

“I think there’s an expectation level out there, and there should be,” Pinkel said. “I told our football team after the game a week ago is that we let a lot of people down, and there’s an expectation level out there. Missouri fans expect us to have a very good football team.”

Cougars’ two-year streak still alive

The winning streak at Owens Soccer Stadium stayed alive for another night. The Columbia College men’s soccer team added another home win Saturday night, beating William Jewell College 2-1.

The winning streak dates back to Nov. 13, 2002, when Columbia College lost in the Region V semifinal game to Graceland University.

Shen, MU too much on court for Baylor

It could have been a complete rout, except for one detail. The third game.

The MU volleyball team defeated Baylor 3-1 (30-18, 30-19, 24-30, 30-15) at Hearnes Center on Saturday.

Bruins misfire against Blue Jays

LIBERTY – For every good play Rock Bridge made, there was a bad one.

Trailing 20-14 at the end of the third quarter with the ball on the Liberty 9-yard line, quarterback Logan Gray threw an interception at the goal line on second down.

Kewpies shut out Patriot offense

Hickman bounced back from its first loss of the season and made a statement Friday night at Parkway South.

The Kewpies beat the Patriots 44-0, dominating on special teams and defense.

Teammates and country-mates

From stacks of bread and butter to squirrels jumping out of trees, the friendship between Shen Danru and Na Yang has covered thousands of miles.

Shen and Na are talented teammates and outside hitters on the Missouri volleyball team, and both are from China. Shen, an All-Big 12 Conference player last year, had 4.3 kills per game this year, and Na, a freshman, has 3.1 kills per game as of last week’s Tiger Invitational.

Tigers up to the task

It took Missouri one drive to shake off the aftereffects from its loss to Troy.

Starting from the Tigers’ 20-yard line, running back Damien Nash carried for no gain. Quarterback Brad Smith hit Thomson Omboga for 2 yards. Smith scrambled left for 5 yards, then Brock Harvey punted.

Tigers gain confidence on defense

After a shaky opening game performance against Arkansas State, Missouri’s defense improved against Troy. The Tigers defensive play continued to get better Saturday during Missouri’s 48-0 win against Ball State.

The Cardinals received the opening kickoff and quickly moved the ball to midfield, gaining two quick first downs. Once Ball State reached midfield, though, the Missouri (2-1) defense stiffened and forced the first of 10 Reggie Hodges punts.

Highs and lows

Omboga returning punts: Thomson Omboga returned a punt 49 yards in the first quarter to spark the Tigers. After a sluggish first offensive series, Omboga’s return gave Missouri excellent field position on Ball State’s 33. The drive ended in a 20-yard Joe Tantarelli field goal for the first score of the game.

Missouri turns around 2nd-quarter production

In the first two games this season, the second quarter was a great time for opponents to make up ground against Missouri.

Arkansas State and Troy combined to outscore Missouri 27-14 in the second with the Tigers giving up the lead against Troy that they would not get back. The Trojans scored 17 of their 24 points in the second quarter on Sept. 9 in the Tigers only loss of the season.

At home on base

Thousands grow up dreaming of turning their childhood games into big-timecareers.

Jayce Tingler, former Missouri Tiger and Smithville native, isn’t there yet, but he’s on his way.

Leaps of faith

Sitting in his Columbia living room as a 12-year-old, B.J. Wolters made a life decision. He had just witnessed his first skydive on a television show, and immediately the pre-teen knew he had found his calling.

“It just looked so awesome and fun,” Wolters says. “I knew I had to try it.”

More time sought to save bridge

The state attorney general’s office is trying to buy more time for a historic railroad bridge in Boonville that is slated for demolition.

Attorney General Jay Nixon sent a letter Friday to the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers asking to extend the period for public comment until Nov. 18. The period was slated to end at 5 p.m. Friday.

Council to vote on proposed utilities increase for 2005

Columbia residents will have a final chance to speak on proposed utility rate hikes when the city council meets Monday to vote on the fiscal 2005 budget.

The average residential bill for city utilities could increase by $5.90 per month due to higher rates for electric, water and sewer services, said City Manager Ray Beck at a Friday press conference.

Law: Council e-mail is a public record

An ordinance introduced to the City Council would amend the city’s open records and meetings statute, prohibiting discussion of city business through group e-mails, city attorney Fred Boeckmann said.

Boeckmann said he has recommended that city officials refrain from sending group e-mails to one another to discuss business because the city does not have the technology to allow open access to those discussions.

Skill at the flip of a switch

Indiana Jones has nothing on Chris Camp.

The whip cracker and entertainer from Springfield, Ill., has 20 years of experience and three awards under his ammunition-studded belt. At the 27th annual Heritage Festival on Saturday, Camp entertained the crowd with his speed and precision tricks while educating them in the history of whips and whip cracking.

Celebrating feminine flair

Last fall, David White began thinking about how, in today’s global political climate, women’s ideas, images, sounds and words needed to be seen and heard.

For years, White, executive director of the Missouri Symphony Society and Missouri Theatre, has been producing a summer music festival. White presented his idea of a women’s art festival to more than a half-dozen local artists, who didn’t need much persuading.

City to buy radar signs for schools

Columbia Public Works is planning to purchase and install radar signs near four city schools with the goal of lowering average speeds in school zones.

The signs, called speed display boards, are non-recording radar units. The City Council must approve the expense as part of its 2005 budget. A vote is expected this week.

Survey says more jobs are coming to midstate

The fourth quarter of 2004 could be a good time to look for a job in Central Missouri, according to the Manpower Employment Outlook Survey released last week.

The survey, conducted each quarter to predict hiring and firing throughout the country, found that 40 percent of the companies interviewed said they were planning to add workers, compared to 31 percent a year ago.