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Volume 24 No. 117


Mississippi State Univ. yesterday announced plans for a $75M expansion and renovation of Davis Wade Stadium at Scott Field, increasing the venue's capacity to 61,337. The project, funded by $68M in bonds and $7M in private giving, is slated to begin immediately and will be completed for the '14 season. A north end zone addition will include a field-level premium area called The Gridiron. Harrell Contracting Group will handle construction of the designs from area architecture firm LPK and 360 Architecture (MSU). In Mississippi, Michael Wardlaw notes MSU AD Scott Stricklin announced the school's stadium renovation plans in front of "a crowd of State fans along the 50-yard line from the current club level on the east side of the stadium." MSU President Mark Keenum said, “This leads to an exciting gameday experience for so many of our alumni and fans. This expansion will allow us to be even more competitive in this very competitive league.” Wardlaw notes the design of the venue "ties the nation’s second oldest stadium into its campus surrounding with a classic design" (STARKVILLE DAILY NEWS, 8/16). Keenum said, "Our fans have responded by selling out the stadium on a regular basis and increasing demand for tickets and enhanced amenities. The designs are impressive and creative." Also in Mississippi, Brandon Marcello noted as part of the expansion, the "entire stadium will be re-seated -- based on Bulldog Club priority points -- prior to the 2014 season." MSU fans "have set numerous attendance records in recent years, having sold out 16-consecutive games." The school also has "sold out of football season tickets for three-straight years" (, 8/15).

HOUSTON, WE HAVE THE FUNDING: In Houston, Joseph Duarte notes plans for the Univ. of Houston's new on-campus football stadium "cleared another hurdle Wednesday when the school's board of regents approved an $85 million finance package to cover phase one of the project." The approval "will allow the school to proceed with plans to begin demolishing Robertson Stadium at the end of this season." Groundbreaking on the new stadium "is expected to begin in January" (HOUSTON CHRONICLE, 8/16).

The 49ers yesterday announced that Violin Memory will sponsor their new stadium in Santa Clara as a Founding Partner. The long-term deal makes the California-based company the team's exclusive data storage provider at the new venue, as well as for the remainder of the club's tenure in Candlestick Park. The company also gains exclusive branding in the new stadium's suite tower. Violin becomes the second announced founding partner for the stadium, following San Jose-based Brocade (49ers). 

UNLEASH A JAGUAR: In Jacksonville, Timothy Gibbons reported after "rejecting a protest from incumbent facility manager SMG, a Jacksonville City Hall committee has picked Global Spectrum to run the city’s entertainment facilities." Yesterday's unanimous decision by the Professional Services Evaluation Committee "now goes to Mayor Alvin Brown." This decision "sets up a possible conflict" with the Jaguars, as the team has said that it "wants SMG to keep the job," which includes managing EverBank Field. Immediately after the selection was made around 4pm ET, Jacksonville Chief Financial Officer Ronnie Belton said that he "would be calling the team 'ASAP' to discuss next steps." The city’s lease with the team says that the facility manager "must be selected jointly" (, 8/15).

SETTING UP CAMP: Redskins coach Mike Shanahan said that the team continues "to evaluate potential sites in Richmond" for their '13 training camp. He added that team GM Bruce Allen "was in Richmond last week evaluating those sites, but no decision has been made on any of them." Shanahan: "In talking to Bruce, they've got three or four potential sites and he feels very confident that we'll get something done, and get it done the right way" (, 8/16).