Fifth Third Arena
|Former names||Myrl H. Shoemaker Center (1989-2005)|
Cincinnati, OH 45221 USA
|Owner||University of Cincinnati|
|Operator||University of Cincinnati|
|Surface||All-Star Plus (basketball floor)|
|Opened||September 12, 1989|
|Construction cost||US$32 million
($61.1 million in 2016 dollars)
|General contractor||Turner Construction|
Fifth Third Arena is a 13,176-seat multipurpose arena in Cincinnati, Ohio, United States. The arena opened in 1989 and is located on the campus of the University of Cincinnati. It primarily serves as the home venue for the Cincinnati Bearcats men's basketball, women's basketball, and women's volleyball teams and hosts other events. It is located in the Myrl H. Shoemaker Center, which was also the name of the arena until 2005, when it was named for Cincinnati-based Fifth Third Bank. It is still popularly known as "The Shoe".
The facility hosted the 1994 Great Midwest Conference men's and women's basketball tournaments, the 1998 Conference USA men's basketball & volleyball tournaments, the 1999 NCAA Mideast Women's Basketball Regional, the 2003 NCAA West Women's Basketball Subregional, and the 2006 Big East volleyball championship.
As of January 22, 2015, the Bearcats are 349-74 (.825) all-time at Fifth Third Arena, including a 42-game win streak from 1997-2000. In the 1999-2000 season, every Bearcat home game was sold out. During the Bob Huggins era, it was known as one of the most hostile arenas in the nation due to the high decibel levels typical of his tenure.
A new basketball court was installed for the 2003-2004 season. It is a similar floor to ones used in the NBA. Like its predecessor, it is named Ed Jucker court, in honor of the coach who led the Bearcats to their two national championships.
The building was previously named for Myrl H. Shoemaker, the former Lieutenant Governor of the state of Ohio. Prior to the building of The Shoe, the Bearcats played off-campus at Riverfront Coliseum (now U.S. Bank Arena) and the Cincinnati Gardens. Their previous on-campus arena, Armory Fieldhouse, has been renovated for recreational use, and is located adjacent to the arena to the north.
On October 31, 2014 WLWT reported that the arena, could be in line for a $70 million facelift. The project would reduce the amount of seating, but improve visibility in the arena. It would also upgrade club areas, restrooms, and even add a new roof.
On June 23, 2015, WXIX-TV reported the price rose up to $80 Million. The new capacity would be 10,818. Per the Fifth Third Arena RFQ (Ohio Facilities Construction Commission) Construction was scheduled to start in March 2016 with completion by September 2017. The Bearcats would play games off campus during the 2016-17 season during renovations
On August 25, 2015, The University officially kicked off the multimillion-dollar fundraising campaign for the renovation. The UC Board of Trustees approved an interim $2.2-million funding request to allow for completion of documents in the design development phase.  $15 million has been raised toward the project, an additional $25 million must be raised before the Board gives full approval in December. UC teams under the renovation plan would vacate Fifth Third Arena for the 2016-17 season. UC Athletic Director Mike Bohn said that US Bank Arena, Cincinnati Gardens, Cintas Center or BB&T Arena are possibilities as a temporary home. No timetable was provided on when a decision would be made on where events will be held.
On December 15, 2015, The UC Board of Trustees approved an $87-million, privately funded renovation of Fifth Third Arena. Proposed improvements to the facility, include the creation of a 360-degree seating bowl, new HD scoreboard, ribbon boards, sound system, an LED lighting system which will allow for enhanced gameday presentation, new restroom and concession facilities, a new upper-level concourse with its own fan amenities, expanded food and beverage options and a new main entrance and plaza with centralized ticketing and guest services. The renovated arena also will feature upgraded locker room spaces, expanded premium seating options, including a courtside club, arena club and concourse club as well as enclosed suites, loge seating, a new Bearcats Lounge and super suites. During the meeting, trustee Rob Richardson Jr. said the upgraded facility would support the university's objective to join a power athletic conference and in student-athlete recruitment.Construction is scheduled to begin in April 2017 and be completed in fall 2018. Construction was originally scheduled to start in March 2016 with completion by September 2017, But the timeframe was pushed back after falling short of a fundraising goal, and as a result of the project's complexity.  Men's and women's basketball and volleyball home events will be conducted off campus during the 2017-18 season while construction is underway.
Season-by-season Bearcats record at Fifth Third Arena
- 1989-90: 10–4
- 1990-91: 12–4
- 1991-92: 15–2
- 1992-93: 14–0
- 1993-94: 18–2
- 1994-95: 9–4
- 1995-96: 13–1
- 1996-97: 13–3
- 1997-98: 19–1
- 1998-99: 14–0
- 1999-00: 13–1
- 2000-01: 11–3
- 2001-02: 18–0
- 2002-03: 13–3
- 2003-04: 18–1
- 2004-05: 15–2
- 2005-06: 14–5
- 2006-07: 10–8
- 2007-08: 10–7
- 2008-09: 14–5
- 2009-10: 12–4
- 2010-11: 15–3
- 2011-12: 14–4
- 2012-13: 13–5
- 2013-14: 18–1
- 2014-15: 15-3
OVERALL: 357–74 .828
- Consumer Price Index (estimate) 1800–. Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis. Retrieved November 10, 2015.
- "UC proposes $70M renovation of Fifth Third Arena". wlwt.com. Retrieved 25 November 2014.
- Hawley, Brad. "UC attempting $80 million renovation of Fifth Third Arena". Fox19.com. WorldNow. Retrieved 23 June 2015.
- Groeschen, Tom (17 June 2015). "Gardens among options when UC renovates Fifth Third". Cincinnati Enquirer. Retrieved 24 June 2015.
- "Fifth Third Arena Renovation Campaign Revealed". GoBearcats.com. CBSi Andvanced Media. Retrieved 25 August 2015.
- Groeschen, Tom (25 August 2015). "UC Board of Trustees approves next phase of Fifth Third Arena renovation". Cincinnati Enquirer. Retrieved 25 August 2015.
- "Fifth Third Arena Project Receives Board Approval". GoBearcats.com. CBSi. Retrieved 16 December 2015.
- Tweh, Bowdeya. "UC pushes back Fifth Third Arena renovation". Cincinnati.com. Cincinnati Enquirer. Retrieved 16 December 2015.
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