Kristin Schnur and Geony Fisher have received a good deal of attention after a photo of them running the stairs of Memorial Stadium in sports bras was tweeted. That football officials shooed them away gave their story a humorous conclusion.
Eric Blumberg, a sports journalist for KOMU who covers Mizzou football, tweeted the photo of the two MU students running down the steps on the southwest side of Faurot Field at 8:55 the morning of Aug. 8. Blumberg said he didn’t expect the picture to get as much attention as it did. A week later, it has been re-tweeted at least 88 times and marked as a favorite 21 times.
“I don’t think this would be a story without the picture,” Blumberg said. “It’s funny. Every day is basically the same. Every day the players say almost the same stuff. This was different; this made it interesting.”
Blumberg said he wasn’t the only one to publicize the episode, but only he tweeted a photo. A day later, the picture was published on the sports blog bustedcoverage.com. It also showed up on Dr. Saturday, a college football blog run through Yahoo! Sports and on Barstool U, a blog geared toward “the C student.”
ESPN radio mentioned “The Mizzou girls who were kicked out of football practice on the air.
“We’ve had people say to us ‘oh, we heard them talking about you on the radio,” Fisher said.
There were even stories on SEC message boards that, perhaps they were sent in as a distraction by an opponent.
“I hadn’t heard that. It’s not true obviously,” an astonished Schnur said. “We go to Mizzou.”
Both Fisher and Schnur did say they were aware of — and disagreed with — the comments critical of Gary Pinkel for asking them to leave practice.
“I don’t think we were a distraction,” Fisher said. “There’s a big difference between this and a game where you have 80,000 people. There’s going to be girls wearing what we were. We’ve ran there before, but when they were running sprints. It didn’t distract them then.”
Fisher, a former Division II volleyball player at Long Island University, said that she and Schnur run stadium stairs as part of a regular, demanding fitness routine.
Both Fisher and Schnur noticed more cars in the parking lot Wednesday but did not think anything of it. Wednesday was the first day Mizzou’s football team practiced at Faurot Field. Like any other practice, Wednesday’s was closed to the public. Media was allowed for the first hour only.
At the same time, the football team was working on position drills the girls began their workout in the southwest corner of the stadium. According to KOMU’s Ashley Zavala, they caught the attention of the defensive line and some members of the media. Within minutes, Director of Football Operations Dan Hopkins politely asked the two to come back later.
“People have asked us if we were mad about (being asked to leave),” Schnur said. “We weren’t. We were embarrassed about it.”
The women agreed that Hopkins was “really nice about it.”
This was not the first time such an incident happened during practice. Zavala said that during spring practice there were students training for a triathlon at Faurot Field. Like Schnur and Fisher, they were also asked to leave practice.
“Carl Edwards could have started running stairs, and they probably would have asked him to stop,” Zavala said.
Mizzou Sports Park Event/Facility Coordinator said through email that the stadium is not open to the public and open only for games and football practices.
— Chris Long