Bell Field

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Bell Field
Bell Field (6443605231).jpg
Aerial view of track meet from the southeast
Full name Bell Field
Former names College Field
Location Oregon State University
SW 26th Street &
SW Washington Way
Corvallis, Oregon, U.S.
Coordinates 44°33′47″N 123°16′44″W / 44.563°N 123.279°W / 44.563; -123.279Coordinates: 44°33′47″N 123°16′44″W / 44.563°N 123.279°W / 44.563; -123.279
Owner Oregon State University
Operator Oregon State University
Capacity 21,000
Surface Natural grass infield
(1937–1974)
Dirt / sawdust
(1910–1936)
Opened 1910, 107 years ago
Closed 1974
Tenants
Oregon State Beavers football
(1910–1952)
Oregon State Beavers track and field
(1911–1974)
Bell Field is located in the US
Bell Field
Bell Field
Location in the United States

Bell Field, originally known as College Field (1893–1909), was an outdoor athletic stadium in the northwest United States, on the campus of Oregon State College (now University) in Corvallis, Oregon. It was the home venue of Oregon State Beavers football prior to the opening of Parker Stadium (now Reser Stadium) in November 1953.

Opened 107 years ago in 1910, Bell Field had a seating capacity of 21,000 at its peak and was named after J.R.N. "Doc" Bell, an early supporter of the college and its athletic teams.[1] With a conventional north-south orientation, its low-profile seating was mostly covered in a horseshoe configuration, opening to the north, at an elevation of 230 feet (70 m) above sea level.

After Parker Stadium opened, most of the seating was removed, but it hosted the school's track and field program on a cinder track until March 1974,[2][3] after which it was torn down. It was located directly west of the baseball field (today's Goss Stadium at Coleman Field) and parallel to its first base line. The Dixon Recreation Center, opened in 1976, occupies the site.

A natural grass field for football was first installed at Bell Field in 1937;[4][5] the surface was previously a mixture of dirt and sawdust.[6][7] That field surface was not unique in the Northwest in the Pacific Coast Conference: Hayward Field in Eugene, Multnomah Stadium in Portland, and Husky Stadium in Seattle made similar transitions to natural grass in this period of time.[7]

In the early 1950s, Oregon State played most of its home football games in Portland at Multnomah Stadium.[8] The final varsity game at Bell Field was the only game on campus in 1952, a 27–6 homecoming loss to conference foe Idaho on November 15, with an approximate attendance of 8,000.[9] The Beavers' sole win in the Pacific Coast Conference that season was in the Civil War game in Portland.[8][10][11] The only game in 1953 in Corvallis was the opener for Parker Stadium on November 14, a 7–0 win over Washington State.

Later tracks[edit]

A new all-weather track facility opened on the south end of campus in 1974 and was named Wayne Valley Field in 1975.[12][13] OSU dropped its track program after the 1988 season for both men and women,[14][15] and the facility was removed in the 1990s, now occupied by the softball stadium. The women's team was reintroduced in fall 2004 and the new Whyte Track and Field Center opened in September 2012.[16]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Carlson, Kip (2006). "Bell Field". Oregon State Football. p. 45. 
  2. ^ Withers, Bud (March 28, 1974). "Buffs could spoil party". Eugene Register-Guard. (Oregon). p. 3C. 
  3. ^ Withers, Bud (March 31, 1974). "Ebba inaugurates track with sub 4-minute mile". Eugene Register-Guard. (Oregon). p. 1B. 
  4. ^ "UCLA leads". Eugene Register-Guard. (Oregon). Associated Press. October 16, 1937. p. 1. 
  5. ^ "Beavers, Bruins battle to 7 to 7 tie battle; Gray is star". Eugene Register-Guard. (Oregon). Associated Press. October 17, 1937. p. 8. 
  6. ^ Simpson, Ned (August 30, 1936). "Highclimber looks 'em over". Eugene Register-Guard. (Oregon). p. 10. 
  7. ^ a b Strite, Dick (December 11, 1936). "University of Oregon plans for turfing of Hayward Field; Callison re-recommended coach". Eugene Register-Guard. (Oregon). p. 14. 
  8. ^ a b "Oregon State Beavers". College Football Data Warehouse. 1952. Retrieved October 31, 2014. 
  9. ^ "Idaho cracks OSC defense for 27-6 win". Spokesman-Review. (Spokane, Washington). Associated Press. November 16, 1952. p. 1, sports. 
  10. ^ "Old rivals Oregon, OSC meet today". Spokesman-Review. (Spokane, Washington). Associated Press. November 22, 1952. p. 8. 
  11. ^ "Grid Standings". Spokesman-Review. (Spokane, Washington). November 24, 1952. p. 9. 
  12. ^ "Beavers name field in memory of athlete". Eugene Register-Guard. (Oregon). UPI. May 24, 1975. p. 2B. 
  13. ^ "Two new UO buildings named for late deans". Eugene Register-Guard. (Oregon). UPI. May 21, 1975. p. 9A. 
  14. ^ Anderson, Curtis (March 30, 1988). "OSU dropping track program". Eugene Register-Guard. (Oregon). p. 1D. 
  15. ^ "Oregon State to suspend track program". Idahonian. (Moscow). Associated Press. March 30, 1988. p. 10A. 
  16. ^ "Whyte Track and Field Center". Oregon State University Athletics. July 19, 2012. Retrieved December 19, 2015. 

External links[edit]