Copyright by Joey Bowles
Boone Pickens Stadium (formerly Lewis Field), the home of Oklahoma State football, is a far cry from what the school's student body of 1914 ever expected when they named the "Athletic Field" after Laymon Lowery Lewis.
A former dean of veterinary medicine and of science and literature from Oklahoma A&M, Dr. Lewis was one of the most popular figures in the school's history.
In addition to his duties as dean and instructor at A&M, Lewis served as the school's acting president in 1914. He was instrumental in the development of experimental stations around the state and, under his brief administration, A&M established the first school of commerce and marketing in the nation.
"Doctor Lew" was highly respected by the school's student body, which named what is currently Lewis Stadium in his honor prior to 1914. The university's first yearbook was also dedicated to Dr. Lewis in 1914.
While the playing field bore his name (thus two references as Lewis Field and Lewis Stadium), the first grandstand seats were installed in 1920 with 8,000 seats available. The facility originally was positioned in the traditional north-south direction, but switched to east-west to "avoid the strong prevailing winds."
The first addition to the stadium came in 1924 with the first steel and concrete portion of the present stadium built on the south side. During the 1929-30 seasons, 8,000 permanent seats were built on the north side for an overall capacity of 13,000. In 1947 the south stands were increased from 20 to 53 rows and capacity climbed to nearly 30,000. For the first time, a permanent press box was then added.
Prior to the 1950 season, 10,600 more seats were added to the north stands, increasing capacity to 39,000 (including temporary end-zone bleachers). The next expansion started after the 1971 season and included removal of the cinder track, lowering the field 12 feet and adding 20 rows of permanent seats to both sides. This expansion, including a completely artificial turf field, cost $2.5 million and was financed through private donations.
The Coaches Building (east end zone) houses the entire football staff, the office of the athletic director and the Charlie Young Varsity Club Lounge. The building was completed just prior to the start of the 1978 season.
Construction of a spacious and modern press box was completed in 1980 at a cost of $1.8 million. The press box has seating for more than 200 members of the print media, with separate levels for radio/television broadcasters, photographers and VIP seating on the first level capable of handling 300. A modern lighting system for night games was installed in time for the 1985 season and cost approximately $750,000.
The most recent addition was a new playing surface (Astro Turf), installed in July of 1987 at a cost of over $400,000.
Official sellout capacity is listed at 50,614 for the stadium, but SRO availability can push the total attendance higher than the 50,614 figure. The all-time record attendance in Lewis Stadium was 51,458 for the Oklahoma State-Oklahoma game in 1979. That same season, 51,000 were on hand for the OSU-Arkansas contest.
Boone Pickens Stadium Quickly
Initially Named After - Dr. Laymon Lowery Lewis, DVM
Secondly Named After - T. Boone Pickens (1951)
Capacity - 50,614 (plus SRO)
Largest Crowd - 51,458 (vs. Oklahoma, 1979)
Field Opened - 1913
Stadium Opened - 1920 (8,000)
Stadium Expansions -
1924 (permanent south side seating)
1929 (permanent north side seating)
1947 (south side additions increase seating to 30,000)
1950 (north side additions increase seating to 39,000)
1971 (field lowered, seating added, capacity 51,000)
1978 (Coaches Building added in east end zone)
1980 ($1.8 million press box added)
1985 ($750,000 lights added)
OSU Home Record - 242-156-27 (.601)
Athletic Field Record (1901; 1903-1913) - 23-12-7 (.631)
Lewis Field/Stadium Record - 219-144-20 (.598)
OSU Undefeated/Untied Home Seasons (10) - 1910 (3-0); 1912 (5-0);
1914 (4-0); 1918 (2-0); 1924 (5-0); 1931 (6-0); 1940 (5-0);
1945 (3-0); 1957 (4-0); and 1984 (6-0).
OSU Five-Win Home Seasons (11) - 1912 (5-0); 1924 (5-0); 1931 (6-0);
1932 (5-0-1); 1940 (5-0); 1972 (5-1); 1975 (5-2); 1976 (5-1);
1984 (6-0); 1987 (5-1); and 1988 (5-1).
OSU Most Home Wins in a Season - 1931 (6-0) and 1984 (6-0).
OSU Most Home Wins-in-a-Row - 1984-85 (nine straight)
Combine a winning football team, a top-of-the-line facility and asold-out sea of orange, and Saturdays in Stillwater will be second to none. Far more than a mere facelift, the proposed upgrades to Lewis Field involve a total renovation of the football stadium, complete withan attractive brick exterior to match the modified Georgian architecture of the OSU campus. When connected to the Athletics Center, the stadium will create a one-of-a-kind sports complex that is unique in all of collegiate athletics.
In this striking Master Plan, upper and lower decks offer chairback and bleacher seating, as well as a special club level and skybox suites. Along with refurbished amenities on the ground level, a new upper concourse will add convenience with ample concession areas, restrooms and novelty stands. The existing pressbox will be replaced by a modern facility with plenty of space for broadcast and print media, as well as for coaches.
With attractive architectural elements and landscaping, the bowled-in stadium offers aesthetic beauty outside and keeps crowd noise inside - boosting OSU's home-field advantage. While seating capacity is currently 47,500, this modern stadium will seat about 53,000 following Phase I of the project, with the capability of future expansion to as many as 73,000.
Ultimately, the size and scope of the stadium project are dependent onfundraising efforts and demand, with construction planned in several phases as revenue becomes available. The sale of Club Seats and luxury suites will constitute a major aspect of the stadium funding.
CLUB SEATS OFFER PREMIUM EXCITEMENT
Cowboy fans will soon experience new levels of pride, upscale comfortand entertainment at Boone Pickens Stadium. With spacious accommodations,exclusive "members only" amenities, and a festive, indoor atmosphere reminiscent of a sports-themed restaurant, OSU's stadium Club Seats will surely become the hottest ticket in town. Reserve your Club Seats now and take your gameday experience to the Next Level.
CLUB LEVEL AMENITIES
* Upscale food & beverages
* Sports-themed club
* Wider seats
* Increased leg room
* Armchairs with cupholders
* Indoor/outdoor views
* Climate-controlled areas
* Great view of entire playing field
* Private access
* Separate Club Level restrooms
* TV monitors & sound system
* Quality POSSE Parking near stadium
* Access for other events year-round
* Special "members only" perks
RESERVE YOUR CLUB SEATS NOW!
The Club Level will be open for fans beginning with the 2004 season of Cowboy Football. Reservations for Club Seats will be taken in the order they are received as availability allows. Allocation of specific seats will be based on POSSE Priority Points. Club area seating capacity is approximately 2,300 for Phase I of the stadium project. Future Club Seats will be located in the North and West stands.
Prices will range from $1,000 to $1,500 per seat, depending upon location. (Included in the first phases of the Boone Pickens Stadium renovation, the Club Level will run from endzone to endzone on the south side of the stadium, just below the skybox Suite Level.) Prices do not include season ticket cost. Club Seats are considered Donor Seating and will qualify for POSSE Priority Points, benefits and parking.
Copyright by Joey Bowles
PICKENS GIVES ADDITIONAL MONEY FOR STADIUM
October 30, 2008
Copyright 2008 MediaVentures
Stillwater, Okla. - While announcing that T. Boone Pickens had made a $63 million donation,
Oklahoma State University athletic director Mike Holder reported the specific and staggering
effect that the stock-market crisis had on the Cowboy athletics fund.
Since July, Holder said, the value of OSU's fund - managed by Pickens' BP Capital hedge fund - had dropped from $407 million to a recent total of $125 million.
After the fund performed well during the second quarter of the year, losses over a period of less
than four months amounted to $282 million.
"Looking back, (could) we have done things differently? Absolutely," Holder said. "But we don't
have the luxury of hindsight. It's pretty amazing that we got from zero to $407 million in a span of 2.5 years."
The fund was established in January 2006, after Pickens had donated $165 million - the largest
single donation ever made to any university's athletic department. When the OSU-BP Capital fund
was established, the starting point was $202 million.
Before the stock market crash, it had more than doubled in value.
The Oklahoma State money - committed to the completion of the Boone Pickens Stadium
renovation and the Athletic Village development - has been removed from the BP Capital hedge
fund and deposited in a bank, Pickens said. With Monday's $63 million donation added to the $125
million that was removed from the fund, OSU has $188 million in that bank account.
Pickens, a 1951 OSU graduate who became an oil billionaire and his alma mater's most
prominent donor, did not attend the press conference.
During OSU's 28-24 football loss at No. 1-ranked Texas on Saturday, he said: "We'll get (the
OSU account) pumped back up and we'll go again. We'll get to where we want to go, but maybe a
"There's no way I will ever let OSU come out short," he added.
Pickens has donated more than $250 million to the OSU athletic department since 2003.
The west-end building will contain a locker room, coaches' offices, a strength-and-conditioning
facility and 56 luxury suites.
The six-year stadium renovation project is scheduled to be completed next year at an estimated
cost of $283 million. (Tulsa World)