By Mary Duncan
JOPLIN, Mo. —
Members of the Kappa Alpha Order of Missouri Southern State University went more than the extra mile for the Muscular Dystrophy Association on Saturday.
They went an extra 35 miles.
Fraternity members ran the football used in Saturday’s Sonic Miner’s Bowl from Pittsburg, Kan., to Joplin in order to raise money for MDA.
Glenn Underwood, a senior at MSSU and chairman of the group’s philanthropic efforts, was in charge of what is known as the Pigskin Run. Twenty-two members of the fraternity participated.
“Since it is a relay-style run, no one had to run the entire 35 miles,” Underwood said. “We tried to divide the miles up evenly, but if someone wanted to run, they did. We ran mostly in pairs.”
The ball was delivered to Fred G. Hughes Stadium at MSSU at 12:15 p.m. for the annual game between the Lions and the Pittsburg State Gorillas. Kickoff was at 2 p.m.
“The run was flawless. The wind got pretty crazy, though,” said Trayton Wenmeyer, one of the runners. “I feel really good about helping out the MDA because there are kids all around the world who really need help.”
The runners set off from the PSU stadium about 6 a.m., running along Missouri Highway 171 and then Route JJ.
Underwood said the group had collected $1,350 by the time the run started Saturday. The fraternity also sold T-shirts to help raise money for MDA. T-shirts are still available at the bookstore in MSSU’s Billingsly Student Center for $10.
While the Pigskin Run has been done in the past, usually from Joplin to Pittsburg, Kan., it has not been an annual event. The last run was in 2010. Glenn Underwood, chairman of Kappa Alpha Order’s philanthropic efforts at Missouri Southern State University, said it made sense to do the run again this year in honor of MSSU’s 75th anniversary. He said the group plans on making the Pigskin Run an annual event.