Boone Pickens Stadium – Oklahoma State Cowboy Football Stadium
|Boone Pickens Stadium Overview|
|The relocation of the Cowboy football operations to the West End Zonein the summer of 2009 punctuates one of the largest building projects in recent NCAA history. And the result is the new home of Cowboy football.Boone Pickens Stadium is now a state-of-the-art facility that not only provides Oklahoma State football with a unique game-day environment and a roaring home-field advantage, but also with unrivaled facilities for daily operations located in incredibly convenient proximities.
Boone Pickens Stadium officially opened a new south side in 2004, a new north side in 2006 and in 2009 put the wraps on the west end zone project. And while the new digs put OSU on the cutting edge of collegiate facilities, the Cowboys still enjoy the home-field advantage that suffocates opponents with the tightest sidelines in all of football.
The result is that every fan in attendance is close to the action and very much a part of the OSU gameday experience in the coziest 60,000-seat stadium in America.
The west end zone project provides “BPS” with a new multilevel football operations center. Some of the new features include football offices, meeting rooms, speed and conditioning center, locker rooms, equipment room, athletic medicine center, media facilities, and hall of fame areas, along with a new training table. Atop the facility, Boone Pickens Stadium is ringed by 99 suites and 3,500 club seats.
The stadium was officially re-dedicated on Sept. 5, 2009, when the Cowboys opened the season against Georgia.
The wheels were set in motion on the multi-faceted, multi-year stadium project when OSU graduate Boone Pickens made the single-largest gift in school history in 2003. His $70 million donation ($20 million of which was earmarked for stadium expansion) spurred the “Next Level Campaign”, which generated more than $100 million in gifts and pledges and involved more than 2,500 individuals, making it the single-most successful campaign in OSU history.
Pickens capped the fundraising effort in 2005 with his monumental gift of $165 million that will not only benefit Cowboy football, but will aid with the development of OSU’s planned multi-million dollar athletic village. The gift is the largest ever received by a university athletic department.
It’s not just the stadium that is changing. In 2005, the playing surface was replaced with Football Pro, a surface created by Millennium Sports Technologies. It is considered the best and most durable synthetic surface available.
Due to construction, official capacity at Boone Pickens Stadium had dropped to 44,700 before climbing back to an all-time high of 60,000 in 2008 when seats in the new west end zone were opened.
As a result of the completed stadium project, OSU had its highest average attendance in school history and shattered the school record for season tickets with nearly 46,000 purchased by the Cowboy faithful in 2009.
The Oklahoma State Cowboys now take to the field from the northwest corner of the stadium in front of the OSU student section. The tunnel walk has become one of the most exciting gameday traditions, as players file out of the locker room and through the halls of the West End Zone. The Cowboys storm onto the field after the opening of the black iron chute gate.
In the east end zone is the Athletics Center, home of historic Gallagher-Iba Arena. Atop the athletic center are the only suites in college athletics that can be utilized for football and basketball.
|OSU’s football home is now far removed from the original field that opened in 1913. The Cowboys’ first athletic field gained its first permanent seating in 1920 and was repositioned from north-south to east-west to “avoid the prevailing strong winds” in the early 1900s.The stadium was originally named after Laymon Lowery Lewis, the popular dean of veterinary medicine in the early 1900s. The first addition to the stadium came in 1924 with the steel and concrete portion of the south stadium. During the 1929-30 seasons, 8,000 permanent seats were built on the north side to bring the capacity to 13,000.
In 1947, the south stadium was increased from 20 to 53 rows and capacity climbed to over 30,000. The first permanent press box was added in 1948. Prior to the 1950 season, 10,600 more seats were added to the north stands, increasing capacity to 39,000.
The next expansion didn’t come until 1971 when the cinder track around the field was removed. The field was lowered 12 feet and 20 rows of permanent seating were added to both sides.
The first artificial surface was installed in 1971 at a cost of $2.5 million, and the coaches’ offices (now part of the Athletic Center) were constructed prior to the start of the 1978 season.
The stadium’s press box was torn down and reconstructed in 1980 and the lighting system was installed prior to the 1985 season.
A second artificial surface was installed prior to the 2000 season and remained in place until the summer of 2005.
Boone Pickens Staduim
422 Aquires, Stillwater, OK