With the recent Memorial Stadium expansion and the second highest number of season tickets sold in Mizzou history, MUPD made a couple changes this year to increase safety for all fans attending the game.
Saturday, there were at least 80 medical emergencies and seven arrests around the stadium.
Usually there are only about three or four MU Police Officers patrolling Mizzou’s campus. But for today’s game day, there were more than 100. That includes all of MUPD’s officers, about 60 from highway patrol and 20 from the county.
Captian Brian Weimer, MU Police Department: “It may involve enforcing alcohol because what we see is people with more serious crimes and the problems that we have later on, even with the heat related, a lot of times it’s due to alcohol.”
In addition to adding more police officers, MUPD closed Mick Deaver Drive before the game. Weimer said it was necessary to keep pedestrians safe from heavy traffic.
Weimer: “They had to shut down Mick Deaver on entry because there would be so many people that the danger, the safety issue of people getting hit by a car and those type of things, you wouldn’t be able to drive up there anyhow. So now to get into that lot over there you have to come in from the south side.”
The road was opened again in time for people leaving the game.
But that didn’t keep fans from being excited about the new 45.5 million dollar east stadium expansion. Mizzou fan Ian Hanson said he is anxious to see the finished project after all five stages are completed.
Ian Hanson, Mizzou Fan: “It’s a great expansion, it’s very necessary. The SEC has large stadiums across the board. We need to improve or increase our amount of students and fans that can attend the game.”
Two Mizzou student fans who sat in east stadium said the expansion heightened the atmosphere.
Adam Klein, Mizzou Fan: “The new stadium is a lot of fun. It really brings a whole new experience to the game. People are a lot more excited.”
For the remaining home games, Captain Weimer said fans can help increase safety by allowing plenty of driving time before and after the games and drinking plenty of water to avoid dehydration and heat-related illness.