SPRINGFIELD, Mo. – Football fans at Missouri State say this year is different.

“The interesting thing about the environment today versus years past is immediately upon arrival, the Petrino’s really created a winning atmosphere off the field and of course, on the field as well.” Dennis Heim said.

“This year, they’re ready. They’re ready to go. And the culture has changed drastically. They’ve learned how to win” Bill Doneghan said.

An infectious attitude has swept through students and alumni who have seen disappointing seasons in the past.

“You would be in the bleachers with the fans and as the action would start, it wold just be really empty.” Natalee Fennell said. “Now you can see everybody, and all the students love to support the football team. It’s really great to be all together this evening.”

“When I first came to campus, as soon as the game started, everyone would just go home, take naps, all that stuff.” Ethan Strauss said. “These last couple of years, like especially last year and this year, it’s like everyone’s excited to get to the game.”

In the two years before Head Coach Bobby Petrino arrived, the Bears won a total of five games.

In Petrino’s first two seasons at the helm, the team has won 13 games and made the national playoffs.

“Everyone enjoys watching a winner. They want to be part of something that’s bigger than themselves.” Heim said.

“From our from our vantage point. It’s definitely nice to look across the stadium and see a full house and we definitely think that, you know, the environment can have an impact on the game.” Dr. Brad Snow said.

“Winning always gets everybody out.” Phillip Trokey said.