Missouri Southern football holds first fall practice

The Lions kick off their season on September 2nd against Nebraska Kearney.

JOPLIN, Mo. – The Missouri Southern Lions took the field today for their first fall practice.

“I can tell that there’s a different atmosphere out here at Missouri Southern right now,” says junior linebacker Richard Jordan Jr. “A bunch of guys haven’t played football in almost two years, so you can tell that the energy was really there today. A bunch of people were bouncing around, excited to put a helmet back on today.”

It’s the first of nine practices before school starts. The Lions will put on pads for the first time on Wednesday.

“It feels great. I had an alarm set for 6 o’clock, but I honestly couldn’t fall asleep,” says senior wide receiver Brian Boyd Jr.. “I woke up at about 5 o’clock. I was just anxious. Bushed my teeth super early. Just ready to get out here and work.”

“I have been overly impressed with how they’ve maintained a high level of energy,” says head coach Atiba Bradley. “They have done a great job keeping the momentum going and continuing to build and build on what we had from the spring.”

It’s a young team this year, and Coach Bradley is looking for guys to stand out in practice.

“We’ve got over 70 newcomers with young guys and a couple transfers,” Bradley says. “The biggest thing is who’s going to separate themselves with how quickly they pick up the playbook, how quickly they fly around, their effort, their physicality.”

Bradley is new too. He is entering his first full season as the head coach and brings a new culture to the program.

“I want us to be the best version of us,” Bradley says. “I really want our guys to maximize themselves so we can maximize ourselves as team.”

His players have bought into his philosophy.

“We’re starting to trust coach Bradley and trust his word,” Boyd says. “Everyone meshes together really well.”

“Our motto right now is one percent. Every day we’re going to do our one percent,” Jordan says. “We see the rankings and everything, but we’re taking it one day at a time.”