Memorial Stadium (Indiana)
|Former names||Seventeenth Street Football Stadium (1960-1971)|
|Location||1001 East 17th Street
Bloomington, Indiana 47408
|Owner||Indiana University Bloomington|
|Operator||Indiana University Bloomington|
|Broke ground||August 27, 1958|
|Opened||October 8, 1960|
($36.4 million in 2015 dollars)
|Architect||Eggers & Higgins|
|Indiana Hoosiers (NCAA) (1960–present)|
Memorial Stadium (also known as The Rock) is a stadium in Bloomington, Indiana. It is primarily used for football, and is the home field of the Indiana Hoosiers. The stadium opened in 1960 as part of a new athletics area at the university and currently has a capacity of 52,929. The stadium is similar in structure to venues at Wake Forest (BB&T Field) and Virginia Tech (Lane Stadium). It replaced the original Memorial Stadium, built in 1925, a 20,000-seat stadium located on 10th Street where the arboretum now stands.
The stadium has been renovated or updated multiple times since the original construction, including the replacement of the original wooden seats with aluminum bleachers, installation of sound and lighting systems, and major structural overhauls.
On June 1, 2003, a $3.5 million renovation of the Memorial Stadium press box was completed, which also added 300 indoor club seats and 9 suites. In the summer of 2003, the Hoosier locker room in Memorial Stadium underwent a $250,000 renovation. The facelift to the original 1986 facility included renovating and modernizing the existing space with new carpeting, lighting, and a new bulkhead ceiling along with the installation of custom-built oak wood lockers for 105 football players. The renovation was funded in large part by former Hoosier quarterback Trent Green his wife Julie and philanthropist Ted Derheimer.
A 36 x 91-foot (28 m) HD scoreboard from Daktronics was added to the South End Zone for the 2010 season (which is the 25th largest collegiate scoreboard in the country), along with a state-of-the-art sound system.
The field at the stadium was originally natural grass, but this was replaced in 1970 with artificial turf, which was updated to AstroTurf in 1986. The AstroTurf was replaced with grass in 1998, but the field soon reverted to an artificial surface (AstroPlay) in 2003. Heavy rains in June 2008 severely damaged the field, washing away the gravel substrate, and creating a large sinkhole in the south endzone, which led to the installation of the stadium's current FieldTurf surface.
In 2005, head football coach Terry Hoeppner had a southern Indiana limestone boulder nicknamed "The Rock" installed in the north end zone as a new campus tradition. This limestone boulder was found prior to Hoeppner's first season at IU in the practice field. It was removed, put on a granite slab and moved to the stadium. The Hoosiers and coach Hoeppner walked out and touched the Rock before running onto the field at every home game during Hoeppner's time as head coach (a tradition that continues today). Terry Hoeppner died of brain cancer on June 19, 2007, and The Rock (renamed "Hep's Rock" during a ceremony with the Hoeppner family on November 6, 2010) now serves as motivation for the team as well as a tribute to Hoeppner's influence on the football program.
North End Zone Complex
In September 2006, Indiana University announced plans to expand Memorial Stadium and enclose the north end zone. Demolition of the North End Zone bleachers took place in January 2007. This left capacity for the 2007 and 2008 seasons at 49,225.
The expansion provides additional space for classrooms, a 25,000 sq ft (2,300 m2). weight/training room, a Hall of Fame, and expanded seating for football, raising the stadium's seating capacity to 52,692. The expansion is part of an overall $55 million expansion of several Indiana University athletic facilities. The project was completed as scheduled in August 2009, and was ready for the Hoosiers when they opened against Eastern Kentucky on September 3, 2009.
Indiana Athletic Director Fred Glass announced in July 2009 $3 million of additional renovations to the stadium for the 2009 season, including a new "retro" North End Zone scoreboard, a "Knothole Park" kids area in the south end zone, upgrades to the press box, repainting walkways, renovated concession stands, additional ticket booths, and new fencing around the stadium.
In 2010, the student section at Memorial Stadium was named "The Quarry".
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