You might remember that earlier this year Odysseus did a tremendous series on UCLA's football facilities and how they fall woefully short of what should be acceptable in Westwood. Not long after, he updated us on Baylor, which was working on plans to build a brand new on-campus football stadium, which will replace their current off campus stadium (sound familiar?). Well, now that stadium for the Bears has gotten the go-ahead.
"Baylor Stadium will be the most modern, fan-friendly college football facility in the nation, and it will ensure that the Bears are a major player in college football for decades to come," said Ian McCaw, director of athletics at Baylor. "I am grateful to Baylor’s lead donors, Board of Regents, President Starr and Senior Administration, along with the leaders in the City and County for making it a reality.
How many of UCLA's facilities in any sport are the "most" anything? Modern? Fan-friendly? Biggest? Newest? Does anything look like this?
Sub-par facilities are the norm in Westwood and that is doubly true for football. Even recent attempts to improve the situation (note that the goal has just been to improve, not do anything extraordinary and be the best, which shows the mindset of those involved) have gone awry, with the Rose Bowl renovation dealing with funding gap and being behind schedule, while Spaulding Field will get new turf for its same old 80-yard field.
Baylor is aiming high. Obviously they are building smaller than what UCLA would need, but they are going sleek, modern and most importantly, on-campus. Everyone at Baylor, from the president to the athletic director to the head coach has spoke of the importance of having an on-campus stadium and what it means to the program and the university of a whole. They get it. Does anyone in Westwood?