ST. LOUIS, Mo. (KMIZ)
Saturday will be the first time in 13 years that the Mizzou football team will play at The Dome at America Center, formerly known as Edward Jones Dome.
Mizzou will play Memphis on Saturday at The Dome with kickoff at 6:30 p.m. and gates opening at 5 p.m.
Assistant Director of Alumni Engagement for the Mizzou Alumni Association, Morgan Kopitsky, said St. Louis is Mizzou's biggest alumni market with around 71,000 alum living in the city.
"There's a lot of times that we ask our alumni and we ask our fans ... to come back to Columbia, come watch our Tigers play here and then even to travel with them sometimes to other places," Kopitsky said. "So, to be going to a market that has so many Mizzou fans and having a big game like this right there in their backyard, I think is so important and so exciting."
The game is one matchup of many in the Mizzou to the Lou series, put on by the St. Louis Sports Commission. The series kicked off with a women's soccer game earlier this month.
Senior vice president for the commission, Chris Roseman, said St. Louis has missed having Mizzou Athletics in its city.
"We all know that Faurot Field is the home of Mizzou Football, but when there's a chance to see the black and gold--whatever activity it is-- in St. Louis, that's always a good thing," Roseman said.
The contract for the series signed in October includes a $150,000 price tag for an event management fee.
It also mentions potential NIL deals with students. Roseman said the commission ended up partnering with more than 75 student athletes for an ambassador program to help promote the series.
Not only does the series help student athletes, but it helps the university.
"It gives the student athletes a chance to get in front of more people," Roseman said. "It gives the University of Missouri more opportunities to get in front of corporate St. Louis to expand their brand, to get more fans involved and it also enables the University of Missouri to attract more student athletes and recruit more students."
Saturday's game was originally scheduled to take place at Liberty Bowl Memorial Stadium in Memphis, Tennessee.
According to a contract signed into an agreement between the two universities in September 2022, The University of Missouri is paying Memphis $500,000 for the game and an additional $250,000 in cash and tickets.
The Mizzou Alumni Association is hosting a tailgate at Ballpark Village Saturday starting at 2:30 p.m. This is a free event to attend, with food and drinks available for purchase.
Ballpark Village is a little over half a mile from The Dome, only a 15-minute walk away. There will also be a free shuttle service to and from the tailgate for those with limited mobility.
Kopitsky said organization for the tailgate began almost immediately after the game was announced last fall.
"The more we can get Mizzou in front of different audiences, whether they be alumni, fans, or prospective students, I think the better," Kopitsky said.
Entertainment Manager with Ballpark Village, Andrew Dreyer, is a Mizzou alum himself and said seeing the team roll through downtown Friday got him even more excited.
"The fact that we're 3-0 and we won in dramatic fashion that last game, you couldn't ask for a better way to come marching in," Dreyer said.
Dreyer said they are expecting around 5,000 fans for the game. He said downtown St. Louis is used to hosting big events, so there are no traffic or parking concerns.
Fans are encouraged to park at The Dome, with specific address and pricing information on its website.
This is the first time Mizzou football will play in St. Louis since the Arch Rivalry Series ended between Mizzou and Illinois in 2010.