Metro fans gather together for the start of college football season

KANSAS CITY, Mo. — Saturday marked the start of the college football season across the country and pushed hundreds of passionate fans to alumni bars across the Kansas City metro to cheer on their favorite teams.

Mizzou bar Harpo’s was packed in Westport for a 2:30 p.m. kickoff where the Tigers took on the South Dakota State Jackrabbits.

“There’s nothing like it!” said Mizzou fan Spencer Minton. “NFL is fun, but in the fall, the temperature, the drinking, there’s nothing like going to a college football game, getting rowdy and supporting your team.”

So for Mizzou fans who couldn’t splurge for a ticket or make the trek to Columbia, Mo., for Saturday’s season opener, Harpo’s in Westport was the next best thing.

“Harpo’s is Mizzou,” said law school alum John Constance. “If you want to watch a Mizzou game, you go to Harpo’s.”

The bar is a place dripping in team spirit and touting game day drink specials – where you can watch instant replays on the big screen or reconnect with old friends.

“Just here with some of my sorority girlfriends, little mini-reunion,” said Mizzou alum Amy Aldrich. “It was where we used to come when we were in college, so it’s just kind of like a throwback to yesteryear.”

It’s that kind of nostalgia that helps pad Harpo’s bottom line.

“You have more staff on and sales increase, which is good all around,” said Harpo’s manager Amanda Rosen. “As sales increase, tips increase. It obviously helps when teams are winning.”

The Tigers beat the Jackrabbits 18-38 Saturday afternoon, which was a win-win for Harpo’s and Mizzou fans.

“There’s nowhere better to cheer on Mizzou, hope for a Maty Mauk win and get ready for a good season,” Minton said.