EagleBank Arena

Coordinates: 38°49′37″N 77°18′36″W / 38.827°N 77.310°W / 38.827; -77.310
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
EagleBank Arena
West entrance in December 2011
Fairfax is located in the United States
Location in the United States
Fairfax is located in Virginia
Location in Virginia
Full nameEagleBank Arena at
George Mason University
Former namesPatriot Center (1985–2015)
Address4500 Patriot Circle
LocationGeorge Mason University
Fairfax, Virginia, U.S.
Coordinates38°49′37″N 77°18′36″W / 38.827°N 77.310°W / 38.827; -77.310
OwnerGeorge Mason University
OperatorMonumental Sports and Entertainment
CapacityBasketball: 10,000
Broke ground1982
OpenedOctober 4, 1985;
38 years ago
Construction cost$16 million[1]
($43.5 million in 2022[2])
ArchitectHOK Sport
Mosley Architects
George Mason Patriots (A10)
Washington Commandos (AFL) (1990)

EagleBank Arena (originally the Patriot Center) is a 10,000-seat arena in the eastern United States, on the campus of George Mason University in Fairfax, Virginia, a suburb southwest of Washington, D.C.

Opened 39 years ago in 1985, it is the home of Patriot men's & women's basketball, and is a venue for concerts and family shows, with 17,000 square feet (1,600 m2) of space.[4] EagleBank Arena has attracted 9.6 million people to over 2,958 events to GMU, which has over 30,000 students.

In 2010, the Patriot Center was ranked seventh nationwide and twelfth worldwide according to ticket sales for venues with capacities between 10,001 and 15,000 by trade publication Venues Today. Also in 2010, the Patriot Center was ranked No. 8 nationwide and No. 18 worldwide according to top grossing venues with a capacity between 10,001 and 15,000 by Billboard magazine.[5]

On May 7, 2015, the university announced that the name would be changed on July 1 to "EagleBank Arena at George Mason University", following a partnership deal with EagleBank.[6][7]

The Patriot Center is the first university venue to be managed by a private company, Monumental Sports & Entertainment, who also owns and manages Capital One Arena in Washington, D.C.


Financing for the construction of the Patriot Center was part of GMU's revenue bond package approved by the Virginia General Assembly in 1982.[8][9] It replaced a 3,000-seat gymnasium.[10]

The first use of the Patriot Center was GMU's graduation ceremonies in May 1985.[11] The official opening of the arena was five months later on October 4, when the Washington Bullets hosted the New York Knicks in an NBA pre-season game, which was the professional debut of future hall of fame center Patrick Ewing, the first overall selection of the 1985 NBA draft out of nearby Georgetown University.[12]

The NCAA men's volleyball tournament was held at the Patriot Center in May 1990.[13] It hosted its first Colonial Athletic Association (CAA) men's basketball tournament in 1986 and its first women's tournament in 2005. The Patriots have amassed an overall record of 220–92 (.705) at the Patriot Center and are also 85–10 (.895) in the Patriot Center against CAA opponents. During the 2010–11 season, GMU amassed a perfect 13–0 home record, which was the second time that occurred in three seasons.

The arena underwent a $10 million renovation, completed in 2009, that added new concession stands, hospitality area, locker rooms and bathrooms, and an improved main concourse.

Management history[edit]

From its opening, the Patriot Center was managed by Abe Pollin's Washington Sports, later renamed to Washington Sports & Entertainment.[12] In May 1999, Pollin sold 40% of Washington Sports to a partnership led by Ted Leonsis as part of a $200 million deal that also saw Leonsis purchase the Washington Capitals hockey team.[14] Leonsis' group increased their ownership of Washington Sports to 44% when they bought out minority owner Arnold Heft in January 2000.[15]

Following Pollin's death in 2009, Leonsis purchased the rest of WSE from Pollin's heirs in 2010, and consolidated Washington Sports & Entertainment with his own Lincoln Holdings company to form Monumental Sports & Entertainment.[16][17] Management of the Patriot Center passed to this successor company.

Renovations and recent events[edit]

Inside in November 2011

On February 4, 2012, GMU men's basketball debuted a new center court scoreboard and set an attendance record against Old Dominion University on homecoming,[18] which then was reached again against James Madison University; both games were won by double digits.

The Patriot Center is the graduation venue for many students of nearby Northern Virginia high schools in addition to hosting Commencement for [19]Northern Virginia Community College.

The Patriot Center hosted the sold-out UFC Fight Night: Maynard vs. Diaz on January 11, 2010. That was the first time that the UFC had staged an event in the state of Virginia.[20]

The arena also hosted a couple of games for the 2018 JBA season, despite not having a team representing the state of Virginia.

Due to renovations at Capital One Arena the Washington Mystics played Game 3 of the 2018 WNBA Finals at EagleBank Arena. The Seattle Storm won and it was the final game of the 2018 WNBA season.


  • Men's Basketball Game Attendance – 9,900 on February 4, 2012 vs Old Dominion University
  • Concert Attendance – Phish – 10,356
  • Grossing Concert – RBD Soy Rebelde - in 2023, $1.9 million
  • Grossing Family Show – Disney On Ice in 2022, $2.46 million
  • Most Points Scored in Arena (Basketball) – 53 by Bobby Aguirre of Macalester College in 1995

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "George Mason Timeline". Archived from the original on 2006-04-26. Retrieved 2006-05-26.
  2. ^ 1634–1699: McCusker, J. J. (1997). How Much Is That in Real Money? A Historical Price Index for Use as a Deflator of Money Values in the Economy of the United States: Addenda et Corrigenda (PDF). American Antiquarian Society. 1700–1799: McCusker, J. J. (1992). How Much Is That in Real Money? A Historical Price Index for Use as a Deflator of Money Values in the Economy of the United States (PDF). American Antiquarian Society. 1800–present: Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis. "Consumer Price Index (estimate) 1800–". Retrieved May 28, 2023.
  3. ^ "Knicks Lose in Ewing's Debut". Gainesville Sun. October 5, 1985. Retrieved February 15, 2012.
  4. ^ "Patriot Center". George Mason University. Retrieved 5 April 2012.
  5. ^ Staff (November 27, 2011). "Staff editorial: Rigging some revenue". Diamondback Online. Retrieved 5 April 2012.[permanent dead link]
  6. ^ "George Mason Univ. sells naming rights to Patriot Center". WVIR. May 7, 2015. Archived from the original on May 18, 2015. Retrieved May 7, 2015.
  7. ^ "George Mason, EagleBank Announce Multimillion-Dollar Education Partnership" (Press release). George Mason Patriots. May 7, 2015. Retrieved May 7, 2015.
  8. ^ SCANNELL, NANCY (1982-01-21). "GMU Asks Legislators for Faculty Pay Raises". The Washington Post. ISSN 0190-8286. Retrieved 2015-11-05.
  9. ^ Barnes, Bart (1982-03-16). "George Mason Plans 9,200-Seat Arena". The Washington Post. ISSN 0190-8286. Retrieved 2015-11-05.
  10. ^ "George Mason sets ambitious schedule". Eugene Register-Guard. Oregon. Associated Press. September 14, 1985. p. 6B.
  11. ^ Mintz, John (1985-05-19). "Graduation Opens GMU Arena". The Washington Post. ISSN 0190-8286. Retrieved 2015-11-05.
  12. ^ a b Turcol, Thomas (1985-09-13). "GMU Arena Opens Oct. 4". The Washington Post. ISSN 0190-8286. Retrieved 2015-11-05.
  13. ^ "NCAA VOLLEYBALL". The Washington Post. 5 May 1990. ProQuest 140218055.
  14. ^ Fatsis, Stefan; Swisher, Kara (13 May 1999). "Group Led by AOL's Leonsis to Acquire NHL's Capitals and Other Sports Stakes". The Wall Street Journal. ProQuest 398682980.
  15. ^ Canfora, Jason La (2000-01-12). "Caps' Owners Buy Heft's WSE Stake". The Washington Post. ISSN 0190-8286. Retrieved 2015-11-05.
  16. ^ Heath, Thomas (2010-04-28). "Ted Leonsis reaches deal to buy Washington Wizards from Pollin family". The Washington Post. ISSN 0190-8286. Retrieved 2015-11-05.
  17. ^ El-Bashir, Tarik; Heath, Thomas (2010-06-11). "Ted Leonsis takes control of the Washington Wizards". The Washington Post. ISSN 0190-8286. Retrieved 2015-11-05.
  18. ^ "What's New at the Patriot Center". George Mason Athletics. 2012-01-27. Retrieved 5 April 2012.
  19. ^ "Spring 2023 Commencement".
  20. ^ "UFC Fight Night 20 targeted for Jan. 11 in Virginia, Spike TV to broadcast (Updated)". mmajunkie.com. Archived from the original on 2011-09-26. Retrieved 2010-10-15.

External links[edit]