After undergoing its most glamorous facelift since it opened in 1938, Razorback Stadium is the 51,000-seat Fayetteville home of the Razorbacks. Nearly two years of construction from 1994-1995 resulted in the return of natural grass to the Razorback Stadium field and the complete renovation of the Broyles Complex.
It was the second major expansion in the recent years. Another year-long project in 1984 resulted in the addition of about 10,000 seats, covered areas, press box expansion and sky boxes.
Lights were added to Razorback Stadium in 1990, and the 1997 season marks the first regularly scheduled night games at Fayetteville.
Arkansas' return to natural grass - the high-tech prescription turf hybrid - puts the Razorbacks at the front of the major trends. The Razorbacks were among the first colleges to install artificial turf in 1969.
Originally built as a WPA project with a capacity of 13,500, the Razorbacks won their first home contest, a 27-7 win over Oklahoma A&M on Sept. 24, 1938. The stadium was dedicated later that fall on Oct. 8, against Baylor. The first expansion projects began with the arrival of John Barnhill as athletic director in 1947. An additional 2,500 seats were added to the north end of each side.
In 1950, a new press box was constructed and 5,200 more seats were build on the west side. A 5,200-seat east compliment was completed in 1957. Additional construction projects came in 1965 and 1969, increasing the seating capacity to 42,678 before 1985.
Astroturf was installed in 1969. The Broyles Athletic Center housing the Razorback football offices and athletic department administration was built in 1975. Renovation was completed in 1994 adding significant new training and locker room space.
Arkansas has won 117 games, lost 56 and tied two in Razorback Stadium since 1938. Prior to the dedication of Razorback Stadium, the Hogs played in a stadium built in 1901 on land now occupied by the Mullins Library and the Fine Arts Center. The structure had 300 seats for spectators and a fence around the outside.
Razorback Stadium Milestones
* September 24, 1938: First Game - UA 27, Oklahoma A&M 7
* September 27, 1969: First Game - On Astroturf
UA 55, Tulsa 0
* November 11, 1989: First Game - With Lights
UA 19, Baylor 10
* November 2, 1991: Last SWC Game - Baylor 9, UA 5
* October 3, 1992: First SEC Game - Georgia 27, UA 3
Source: University of Arkansas Men's Athletics Department
On July 4, 1998 James Cherry writes: Frank Broyles, the Univeristy of Arkansas' athletic director, announced Monday tenative plans to expand Razorback Stadium to 73,000 seats in time for the 2000 season. It is expected that plans will be finalized soon. Although the capacity would not be staggering, Razorback Stadium itself would become one of the most modern stadiums in college football and would have considerably more sky boxes than nearly any other facility. Also, it is expected that UA's off-campus stadium, War Memorial Stadium in Little Rock, would follow suit. This is because UA has a long tradition of playing half its games off-campus and War Memorial has been in need of major reenovations for years now.
On June 15, 1999 Jeff Necessary wrote: The expansion project for Razorback Stadium at the University of Arkansas has been revised several times since it was announced in 1998. Currently, the projected capacity will be in the neighborhood of 80,000 seats when the expansion is finished. Heery International of Atlanta is the lead architect for the project, and construction is expected to begin in July 1999. However, politics has entered the consideration. To help pay the estimated $60 million cost of the work, Arkansas Athletic Director Frank Broyles wants to alter the allocation of games between the Fayetteville campus and the off-campus home site, War Memorial Stadium in Little Rock. In years with six home games, there would be four in Fayetteville, two in Little Rock; in seven-game home schedules, there would be five in Fayetteville. This has angered some prominent Little Rock businessmen, who have threatened to withdraw financial support from the athletic program if any games are moved out of Little Rock. This has also accelerated plans for expansion of the Little Rock facility to 70,000 seats. The University's Board of Trustees will vote on the allocation of games in the fall of 1999.
ARKANSAS MAKING PLANS FOR FACILITY GROWTH
October 28, 2010
Copyright 2010 MediaVentures
Fayetteville, Ark. - University of Arkansas athletic director Jeff Long has announced
preliminary plans for a football operations center, an 80,000 square-foot facility that will move the team out of the Broyles Center, according to the Log Cabin Democrat.
He said the new football operations center is “priority No. 1" in regard to the athletic department's master plan, which also includes tentative projects like the expansion of Razorback Stadium, construction of a basketball practice facility and building of a baseball training area.
The proposed football operations center will be located south of Razorback Stadium. It will connect to the Walker Pavilion, which houses an indoor practice field and Arkansas' football weight room. Plans for the two-story center include a team locker room, coaches' and staff offices, team meeting rooms, a training room, equipment room, recruiting lounge and hall of fame.
Long said building the center in that location - instead of revamping it in its current spot in the Broyles Center - will help centralize football operations and give Arkansas the ability to expand Razorback Stadium.
No current plans for expansion have been drawn up and Long said the team won't be out of the Broyles Center completely. Arkansas will continue to use locker rooms and meeting areas in the Broyles Center on gameday.
Long could not offer a concrete cost for the project because it is just in the design stage. However, he did offer a loose estimation of $24 to $35 million, the newspaper reported.
A $10 million challenge grant has been secured from the Donald W. Reynolds foundation. In addition, another $2 million in donations have been earmarked for the project.
The Democrat said the majority of the funds must be raised before final approval can be sought from the Arkansas Board of Trustees and construction of the operations center can begin. He estimated 18 months would be needed to complete the project, but Long is hoping construction will begin in less than a year.
ARKANSAS RELEASES $320 MILLION PLAN FOR FACILITY UPGRADES
October 20, 2011
Copyright 2011 MediaVentures
Fayetteville, Ark. - The University of Arkansas unveiled a long-term vision for athletic facilities. The projects - expected to impact all sports - could take up to 30 years to complete at an initial estimate of $320 million, Arkansas Business reported.
Major projects include the addition of club seating in the north end zone of Razorback Stadium, a basketball practice facility, an academic and dining area for all athletes and upgrades to all existing athletic facilities. Also proposed is a sidewalk system connecting facilities on campus and detailing Razorback athletic history.
There is no definitive timeline for building or fund raising any of the proposals. None of the projects have received Board of Trustees approval.
"It is a very ambitious plan," Athletic Director Jeff Long said. "It's a wish list for the future of our program. ... Really, the timeline is determined as we move forward. It's a long-term vision, one played out for years to come."
The Fayetteville Flyer said the school's Board of Trustees approved the commission of the plan, developed by an architect team including Populous, Modus Studio and University Facilities Management.
One project, however, that has already been approved by the Board of Trustees is the football operations center.
Long also released plans other plans for improvements, including a new video board for Reynolds Razorback Stadium to be installed as soon as 2012.
The project includes:
• Basketball Practice Facility with two full courts, weight room, a museum and training.
• North end zone expansion of Razorback Stadium, focused on suite and club seating. The venue would expand stadium by 5,000 seats.
• Baum Stadium would get additional club seating in left and right fields, a center field entrance and concourse that allows for 360 degree access around the stadium. The work would add 44 new suites.
• Bud Walton Arena would get expanded concourses and be retrofitted for concerts and events.
• A 5,000-seat Competition Venue would replace Barnhill Arena. Department officials believe it would be cheaper to build a new facility to house gymnastics and volleyball.
Funding is expected to come from traditional sources, although no targets were set.