Athletics Notebook: Renovations ongoing at Memorial Stadium

As construction continues at Faurot Field, Frank Haith signs another transfer and the volleyball team brings in a top-20 recruiting class. 
David Freyermuth / Graphic Designer

Construction continues on Faurot Field at Memorial Stadium after a mid-April groundbreaking, as two separate multi-million dollar renovations take shape.

Revamping the 87-year-old stadium’s west tower should be completed by the 2013 football season and will cost $9.74 million. It will see the reappearance of Missouri’s famed rock “M,” absent at the program’s spring scrimmage, moved down the north hill and closer to the end zone to make room for an expanded north concourse. The current press area will also be turned in to new luxury suites.

The east tower project, costing $45.55 million, is slated to be completed by the 2014 season and will include some 4,100 upper deck seats plus another 800 club seats.

Basketball adds another transfer

Men’s basketball coach Frank Haith added yet another transfer in former Baylor guard Duece Bello in late May.

Per transfer rules, Bello will sit out the 2013-14 campaign and join the Tigers as a redshirt junior in 2015. He averaged 2.8 points and 10.6 minutes per game last season and his career scoring high, 13, actually came against Missouri his freshman year in the Big 12 conference tournament.

“As a player I really like his desire to be the best defender possible,” Haith said in a news release. “He is a tremendous athlete and has that great explosion and length that you just can’t teach. He wants to be great and wants to hang his hat on being a defensive stopper. I really liked his mindset when we spoke, and I’m very excited to have him with us at Mizzou.”

Haith loaded his 2012 roster with six transfers, two of whom graduated after the season. The second-year helmsman already added junior college transfer Keanau Post earlier in the offseason.

Volleyball recruiting class ranked 18th nationally

Of coach Wayne Kreklow’s six volleyball signees, two garnered All-American honors in high school, enough to bump the Tigers’ largest recruiting class of all time to a No. 18 national ranking by

In the Southeastern Conference, only Arkansas (16) and Tennessee (17) had better-rated signings.

It is the highest-ranked recruiting class in program history since juniors Molly Kreklow and Lisa Henning merited a No. 14 ranking in 2010.

Incoming defensive specialist Carly Kan was named first team All-American, and setter Loxley Keala was named honorable mention.

Thomas named first team All-American

Senior pitcher Chelsea Thomas earned first team All-American honors for the third straight year, the National Fastpitch Coaches Association announced Wednesday.

Thomas went 24-6 in 2013 with a 1.16 ERA, good for sixth in the nation. She is the winningest pitcher in Missouri softball history and was named the SEC Pitcher of the Year after twice being named Big 12 Pitcher of the Year the two seasons prior.

In 2013, she led the conference in strikeouts with 117 and held opposing batters to a league-low .176 batting average.

In her last appearance for the Tigers, Thomas allowed two hits and a run over six innings of work in a loss to Washington. Missouri failed to make the Women’s College World Series in Oklahoma City for the second straight year.

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