The Salukis’ football game against the University of Missouri set for Sept. 8 has been cancelled.
Mizzou switched from the Big 12 to the Southeastern Conference, which scheduled a home game for the team against the University of Georgia on the same day. The Missouri university also had a game scheduled Sept. 22 with Miami University in Ohio that it had to drop for a match with the University of South Carolina.
While Mizzou was originally supposed to pay SIU $325,000 for the game, SIU announced Feb. 7 they will now play Ohio’s Miami University for $200,000. Mizzou will cover the difference and pay SIU $125,000.
Mario Moccia, director of athletics, said every year the Salukis try to schedule a guaranteed game with a larger school. This year SIU played the University of Mississippi and last year played the University of Illinois at Champaign -Urbana.
Moccia said the cancellation of the game won’t hurt SIU’s relationship with Mizzou.
“It was a problem that just couldn’t be avoided,” he said. “I think we certainly all worked together to bring a good outcome to this.”
Moccia said he’s happy SIU will still be paid the same amount and the Salukis will still get to travel and play a game against Miami.
The $325,000 will go toward the general budget of the athletic department.
Mark Scally, associate athletic director, said the general budget is used for uniforms, equipment, travel, meals, scholarships and more. He said while he wishes SIU could still play Mizzou, he thinks the game against Miami will be a good one.
“I think our fans are always disappointed when they don’t get a chance to see the Salukis plays some of the top competition in the country,” Scally said.
Kyle Fisher, a senior from Du Quoin studying radio-television, said he agrees the game cancellation is a disappointment. He said he planned on attending the game since he went to the games against Mississippi and Urbana-Champaign.
“I had a lot of fun going to the bigger games that we play, and it’s just an experience we don’t get to have all the time,” Fisher said. “It was something I was looking forward to, and Miami, Ohio doesn’t have the same ring to it as Mizzou.”
He said he might consider going to the Miami game, but he won’t go out of his way for it.