College Facility Notes: Minnesota Leaders Concerned With Facility Upgrade Plan Price
In Minneapolis, Kaszuba & Youngblood in a front-page piece report some of the Univ. of Minnesota's "biggest contributors conceded Thursday" that the school's $190M athletic facilities renovation plan "could prove difficult, with one calling it a 'huge bite.'" School officials one day after introducing the plan reiterated that state money, which "provided the bulk of the funding for the $288 million TCF Bank Stadium, has been ruled out for the proposed series of athletic upgrades." State Sen. Terri Bonoff said that people should not "count on state money for the U’s menu of upgrades." However, fundraisers and school officials "remained optimistic, and hinted that corporate contributions -- and even naming rights for practice facilities -- might be possibilities for enticing support" (Minneapolis STAR TRIBUNE, 7/12).
NAMING RIGHTS STIPULATION: Lexington Mayor Jim Gray said that if naming rights to a renovated Rupp Arena are sold, he "keenly wanted 'Rupp' to remain part of its identity." Former Kentucky men's basketball coach Joe B. Hall "agreed with Gray." Hall said the arena "can always be 'Something-Rupp Arena.'" Hall: "I'm OK with that. ... It could be Alltech Rupp Arena. It could be the Ashland Rupp Arena. It could be the IBM Rupp Arena. Whatever" (KENTUCKY.com, 7/11).
CORNHUSKERS HOPE TO BREAK GROUND: Nebraska AD Shawn Eichorst is "proposing new facilities" for the soccer and tennis teams that would be "built on the former State Fair Park campgrounds." The women's soccer team would "get a new stadium with lights and seating for 2,500," while new tennis facilities would "include 12 lighted outdoor courts and six indoor courts, with room for a combined 1,400 spectators." The estimated $20.4M cost would be "paid for through private donations." The NU Board of Regents will "consider the proposal" Thursday (Lincoln JOURNAL STAR, 7/12).