MSSU Lions Athletics
Missouri Southern State University is proud of its student-athletes and the way that they push themselves to achieve success both on and off the field. Whether it's staying after practice or studying late for a test, they understand to accomplish greatness giving a little extra is necessary.
Your support has and continues to have a major impact on MSSU student-athletes. From the classroom to the fields of competition, you are with them every step of the way.
As MSSU Athletics continues to grow and evolve, we envision ourselves as being one of the premier NCAA Div. II Athletics programs. Contributions to MSSU Athletics can achieve big results with great impact. To get involved you can:
- fund the sports team of your choice
- create an endowment
- provide funds to enhance the MSSU sports facilities
- join the Lionbacker Booster Club
Baseball Stadium: It is a goal of Missouri Southern to have an on-campus baseball stadium to provide each student-athlete with the best possible collegiate experience. For our baseball program, that means enabling the student-athletes to play games on their campus, in a stadium they can call their own. Naming opportunities available. Project estimated cost: $2,500,000
- Athletic Fieldhouse: Plans are underway north of Fred Hughes Stadium to house locker rooms for multiple sports, an athletic training room, meeting rooms, an athletics Hall of Fame and alumni event center, and coaches offices. This facility will address safety concerns--ensuring that student-athletes will have changing, training, and treatment areas near the playing fields--thus eliminating the dangerous need to walk across Duquesne Road. Naming opportunities available. Project estimated cost: $9,000,000
Tom and Karen Rutledge Endowment Fund: Missouri Southern is working to establish the Tom and Karen Rutledge Endowment Fund of $100,000 to honor Coach Tom Rutledge who served Missouri Southern since 1988. The fund will support the needs of the cross country and track and field programs, which Coach Rutledge established and developed into one of the top Division II programs in the country.
- Coach Pat Lipira Endowment Fund: Coach Pat Lipira guided the Lions to six NCAA Regional appearances, four MIAA Championships, and the NCAA National Championship in 1992. She was a five-time MIAA Coach of the Year, two-time Regional Coach of the Year and National Coach of the Year in 1992. Proceeds of the donations to this fund will go to name the softball complex and the softball locker room at the athletics field house after the former Lion Softball Coach and will help to endow a scholarship in Coach Lipira's name.
Lionbackers Booster Club
Since its founding in 1968, Missouri Southern has consistently produced competitive athletic programs and quality student-athletes. By becoming a part of the Lionbacker Booster Club you can help continue that successful tradition.
Statement of Purpose
The purpose of the Missouri Southern Lionbackers Association is to aid the athletic department in achieving its primary goals of graduating the student-athlete and fielding teams that are successfully competitive. The Lionbackers will financially support the athletic department through the purchase of Lionbacker memberships and by actively recruiting new members. The Lionbackers will grow loyal fan support through strong attendance at athletic events, by encouraging the consistent attendance of others, and by generally promoting Missouri Southern Athletics throughout Joplin and the surrounding communities.
This is the most beneficial level to the immediate needs of the Missouri Southern Athletic Department. Gifts to athletics typically are cash gifts, but contributions of personal property, goods or services, real estate or appreciated securities can mean substantial support for the Missouri Southern Athletic Department.
Many companies have matching gift programs. These firms will match a contribution dollar for dollar, and some companies even match two-for-one or three-for-one! You should contact your personnel office for more information and an appropriate matching gift form to send with the gift. Be aware that some companies have eligibility restrictions on gifts they will match.
Honorary and Memorial Gifts
Honorary and memorial gifts are a fitting way to pay tribute to someone's life and accomplishments while strengthening the Missouri Southern Athletics program. Several scholarship funds have been endowed to perpetuate an individual's name.
Whatever club level you choose to join, as a member of the Lionbacker Booster Club you become an important part of the Southern Athletics program. Your support benefits the various men's and women's teams, and helps make a college education accessible for student-athletes. Become part of the winning tradition, and help take Southern to even greater success in NCAA Division II.
Call the Missouri Southern Athletic Department at 417-625-3576 for more information on how to become a part of the family. Please visit the MSSU Athletics website to find more details about the Lionbacker Booster Club.