Mules Football Played Intrasquad Scrimmage for Charity

Written by Matthew Goldsmith, News Editor

The University of Central Missouri Mules football team competes in an intrasquad scrimmage at Walton Stadium on Sat. Nov 14. The event was organized after scrimmages with Washburn University and Northwest Missouri State University were cancelled. (Photo by Matthew Goldsmith )

  The Central Missouri Mules football team played in an intrasquad scrimmage on Saturday Nov. 14. The offense defeated the defense 30-23.

  The event was a replacement for the scrimmages with Washburn and Northwest Missouri State, which were cancelled in the last two weeks after the opposing teams had COVID-19 cases.

  The scrimmage had no charge for entry, but fans were encouraged to donate to the Mules football food drive. The event produced roughly 200 pounds of food and $96 in donations. The proceeds were donated to the Warrensburg Food Center, Manna Harvest and Early Childhood Hunger Operation.

  Although the Mules were helping out the community through donations to the food center, the team was still disappointed about having a scrimmage against another team canceled. 

  Senior quarterback Kyle Bradley said, “I was kind of bummed out about not being able to play a team that’s not the Mules.” 

  Bradley has found ways to remain positive despite the scrimmage cancellations. 

  “You just got to think of it in a positive aspect and just try and make the most of the opportunities and the practice we get on the field,” Bradley said.

  The scrimmage was a growing experience for the Mule’s young players and Bradley said he thinks getting to be in game-like situations will be beneficial for them.

  “I think just being able to see some actual game-like situations and scrimmages like that is really beneficial for them,” Bradley said. 

  The Mules are coming off one of their most successful seasons in recent memory. The team went 11-2, clinched a share of the MIAA conference title and advanced to the NCAA Division 2 playoffs. 

  Bradley said he has liked what he has seen from this year’s group so far, and they are still going at it with their fast-paced style of football.

  Kyle Westphal, the Mules special teams coordinator, said he has been impressed by the squad this year and was disappointed they didn’t get to compete against another team. 

  “It was time for us to hit another color jersey,” Westphal said. 

  Westphal said he wasn’t surprised by the Washburn cancellation and realizes the challenges COVID-19 and this year has brought.

  “The year that we’re living in, you can’t really take anything for granted,” Westphal said. 

  Westphal said after 2-3 months of quarantining, they are excited to just be able to practice.

  The football team isn’t the only team who was affected by the cancellations. The UCM Mulekickers dance team, along with the marching band and color guard, were also set to perform.

  Mulekickers captain Allyson Miller said the dancers were disappointed by the lack of a fall season and the cancellation of the Washburn scrimmage. 

  Miller said the Mulekicker experience has been different this year because of COVID-19 and all that has come with it.

  Despite the challenges, the Mulekickers and many of the teams have used this year as a bonding experience. 

  “We’ve all gotten really close this year,” Miller said.