There have been a lot of big moments, great memories and even better human interest stories that we here at the Index sports section covered this year for Truman sports. Ultimately, student athletes come and go from the collegiate level, but they do leave a significant impact no matter how they moved on from a program.
This sets the stage for what has happened here at Truman, as two high-profile athletes are moving onto the Div. I level. Let’s begin with an analysis of senior Cody Schrader, the nationally recognized running back who has decided to transfer to the University of Missouri.
Schrader was box-office level for the Bulldogs, particularly this past fall. Put this into perspective: Cody Schrader had the most rushing yards (2,074), rushing touchdowns (25) and rushing yards per game (172.8) out of the entire NCAA, according to Truman athletics. This means Schrader outperformed players in the FBS, FCS, Div. II and Div. III. In addition to this, Schrader was named a first-team All-American by the American Football Coaches Association.
Schrader is what is known as a superstar player. His individual accolades had the eyes of potential FBS suitors wide open, and ultimately landed him with the SEC competing Missouri Tigers. Schrader now enters what is arguably the most competitive football conference in the country.
“Okay, but how does this connect back to Truman?” one might think. Well, thanks to Schrader, Truman now has significant football notoriety. They’ve fostered and advanced their superstar player to the next level, all while providing a top-notch education. The fusion of academics and athletics that this institution provides is exceptionally attractive for incoming recruits.
The premiere athletic status rolls into other sports as well. Former Bulldog basketball junior forward Cade McKnight finds himself transferring to Indiana State University to play basketball for the Sycamores at the Div. I. McKnight is a two-time All-American, and was the GLVC Player of the year in the 2020-2021 season. The Bulldogs have enjoyed massive success with McKnight on the team, who has had big shoes to fill since Brodric Thomas graduated in 2020.
Once again, an immediate reaction of angst and worry about the future might be appropriate for Bulldog fans. However, Bulldog basketball continues to produce elite talent that advances to the next level under coach Jeff Horner. Brodric Thomas is in the NBA currently playing for the Boston Celtics, and as a former Truman Bulldog, had one of the most prolific careers here ever. If this is any indication for what McKnight can do after college, then the excitement should continue to resonate.
Ultimately we have to say goodbye to our student athletes in one way or another. Putting things into perspective can sometimes ease these departures though. We should send these athletes off on a positive note not only for what they achieved on the field, but also for their success in Truman’s rigorous academic climate. Good luck to Shrader and McKnight in their future endeavors. They will forever be Bulldogs, and will be etched into Truman sport’s lore for their accomplishments during their careers.