Illinois and Missouri last played in 2010 in St. Louis. Not surprisingly, the president of the St. Louis Sports Commission wants to see those two teams return for a revival of their “Arch Rivalry” in the not-too-distant future.
Speaking with the St. Louis Post-Dispatch, Frank Viverito said initial discussions have taken place about bringing the game back to the city — at least partially.
“I still think it would be the most successful college football endeavor that we can undertake,” Viverito said. “Yes, we’re in discussions. It would be whatever the schools want it to be: two years or four years, alternate between St. Louis and Chicago or alternate between Champaign, Columbia and St. Louis. We just feel we bring something to the table to produce that game here relative to atmosphere, revenue and tradition. Both athletic directors have indicated a willingness to look at the game.”
With the Big Ten going to nine conference games in 2016 and the SEC possibly, eventually, doing the same, finding room on the non-conference schedule could be difficult. A Mizzou athletic department official told the Post-Dispatch that the SEC has asked schools not to schedule non-conference games beyond 2014 until a decision on conference scheduling has been reached. The SEC agreed to stay at eight conference games for 2014 and ’15 during spring meetings.
As for Illinois, the new Big Ten divisional alignment means the Illini will have five conference home games during odd-numbered years.
It’s all about where the game fits. If it fits.
So while a possible revival of the series may eventually come to fruition, it also may not happen for several years.
Missouri leads the overall series with Illinois 17-7.