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BCS Facilities Roundup – Nov 2019

Each month we highlight a list of announced, in progress and recently completed college athletic construction projects from around the country.

Football

Oklahoma State has begun efforts to replace the 66-year-old west side of Reser Stadium in a $175M project that would be the largest construction effort in the school’s history. Among the plans are repurposing underutilized east side club seating and create more loge boxes, “premium spaces” and suites in addition to reducing overall capacity of the current 43,154 capacity. A consultant is expected to be hired in December to assist with the project.

Clemson’s Board of Trustees approved $68.7M in upgrades to Memorial Stadium. Renovations are expected to begin December 2020 and be completed by Summer 2021. Proposed upgrades include an expanded locker room, larger video board, LED lighting and a new sound system. There will also be multiple seating upgrades, including new structures in the east that will add nearly 2,500 deck seats, a reconfiguration of the concourse level to allow for a new club area and also a club level at field level on the west side.

Nebraska announces plans for new $155M, 350,000 square foot football training center. The Huskers plan to break ground in spring/summer of 2020 and open the new facility for the 2022 football season. The new facility will include a new locker room, strength and conditioning center, athletic medicine facility, equipment room, meeting rooms, coaches’ offices and an additional outdoor practice facility. The plans also include dining and study areas that will be open to all student athletes.

Auburn has selected HOK Architects and Goodwyn, Mills, Cawood for its new football facility. The location for the facility has yet to be selected, but it will house only the football program, with locker rooms and meeting spaces. The budget is also still in progress.

UCF broke ground on McNamara Cove, a beach-themed area around the football stadium. It will feature a 600-foot lazy river, pools and sand volleyball courts. Construction will begin after the football season and is expected to be completed in time for the 2020 football season.

Baseball

Marshall University gets the go-ahead to purchase land from the Huntington Municipal Development Authority for a new baseball stadium. The total cost of the properties was $300,000, plus $168,000 for an environmental consultant. Renderings from infrastructure firm AECOM here. Total cost to develop the stadium is expected to be $22M.

Washington State broke ground on the Cougar Baseball Facility Project: BTO (Back to Omaha). The project includes a $10M clubhouse facility and entrance to Bailey-Brayton Field. Features include a 1,300 square-foot locker room, a 1,500 square-foot weight and cardio room, academic area, team meeting room, areas for Cougar equipment, nutrition and athletic medicine and coaches offices. It will improve ingress and egress along with adding new public restrooms and concessions.

Olympic Sports

Oklahoma has hired Timberlake Construction to carry out the construction of a new softball facility and renovations for Sam Viersen Gymnastics Center. Oklahoma previously announced the $22M softball facility with plans to seat approximately 3,000 fans after the addition of temporary seating still resulted in sellouts during the 2018 season. It will replace Marita Hynes Field, which was opened in 1998. Bockus-Payne is listed as the architect of record for the gymnastics renovation, which has a $5M budget.

With the construction of Nebraska‘s new football on the current site of the Ed Weir track stadium, a new track facility will also be built. It will be built north of the Devaney Center, which will put it closer to Nebraska’s indoor track facility and coaches’ offices.

Texas A&M and Populous announced plans for a facility renovation project on the existing Anne & Henry B. “Hank” Paup ’70 Aquatic Center. New upgrades and features will include new locker rooms, coaches offices, an athletic training room area, dryland training space and fueling station. An exterior lobby will also be added to allow student athletes, coaches and fans a designated entrance separate from that of the main REC.

Esports

BusinessofCollegeSports.com recognizes that esports are not (yet) governed by the NCAA. However, many of you have expressed interest in following the development of these facilities, so we will include them here as appropriate.

Virginia Wesleyan has opened its new Marlin Esports Arena. Features include 17 high-performance gaming PCs featuring Intel Core i7-9700K processors, ASUS Prime Z390-P motherboards, MSI RTX 2070 Armor video cards, and MSI Optix gaming monitors. The space also includes a large projection system for audience viewing and game study.

Naming Rights

Arizona State has sold the naming rights to its arena, which is home to men’s and women’s basketball, wrestling, gymnastics and volleyball. The deal is worth $7.5M over the next five years.

Louisville reached a $9.5M settlement with John Schnatter after removing the Papa John’s name from its football stadium following news of Schnatter’s using a racial slur on a company conference call. An initial payment of $1.5M was to be made immediately, and annual installments of $2M will be due every July for the next four years.

Can Louisville land a new deal worth more than what it owes Schnatter? I took a look at what we know from recent deals.

Barton College received a $2M gift from BB&T for naming rights on its new football stadium. Barton is located in Wilson, North Carolina, BB&T’s first headquarters. Barton hasn’t fielded football since 1950 but will return for the 2020 season and play in DII through a scheduling alliance with the South Atlantic Conference.

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About Kristi Dosh

Kristi A. Dosh is the founder of BusinessofCollegeSports.com and has served as a sports business analyst and contributor for outlets such as Forbes, ESPN, SportsBusiness Journal, Bleacher Report, SB Nation and more. She is also the author of a book on the business of college football, Saturday Millionaires. Kristi is a sought-after consultant and speaker on topics related to the business of college sports and a former practicing attorney. Click to learn more
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