Last game at Moody Coliseum remembers past, looks to future
Published: Tuesday, March 5, 2013
Updated: Tuesday, March 5, 2013 22:03
Moody Coliseum shut down March 4 to begin its $47 million renovation in preparation for SMU’s move to the Big East Conference next season.
The men’s basketball team held its final home basketball game in Moody last Wednesday, toppling Rice 67-55.
The Mustangs jumped out to a 35-20 lead at halftime, due in large part to a 19-2 run during the middle of the first half. The second half, however, was plagued with mistakes and mishaps.
“I had some key [turnovers] down the stretch and missed a couple box-outs,” junior forward Shawn Williams said. “If we’re going to be a good team, I have got to do a lot better.”
After leading by as much as 16, SMU allowed Rice to pull within six points in the final minutes.
Head coach Larry Brown thought SMU played badly in the second half. “We didn’t know if we were the blue shirts or the white shirts.”
Williams pointed to SMU’s lack of depth on the bench, but thought the same about Rice. “They were thin, we were pretty thin too though. They were tired and we were just as tired.”
Nevertheless, SMU extended the lead to 12 points and ended the season with a final win in Moody, the last before the renovation.
“I think we owed it to all the players and alumni that have been here before us to keep a positive history here,” sophomore center Cannen Cunningham said.
“It’s a great gym, and we’re looking forward to the renovations. I think tonight was meaningful for the players that have been here before us.”
SMU alumnus Bobby Mills, who scored the first basket in Moody Coliseum, was in attendance.
To commemorate the renovation, Mills took the final shot after the game had ended. Mills made the last basket on the third attempt.
Referencing SMU’s play in the second half, Brown said, “Mr. Mills must have watched us play. That’s why he missed the first two lay ups, but he made the onethat counted.”
During the game, SMU displayed various video segments called “Moody Memories” which highlighted important moments from the coliseum’s past. These included buzzer beater wins, conference titles and record-breaking games from Moody’s past 57 years.
Freshman Kyle Douglas, who attended the game, characterized the “Moody Memories” as a notable experience.
“It was like I was there when we first broke ground,” Douglas said. “I saw the resurrection of Moody.”
While reflecting on the past, Douglas also looked toward the future and the $47 million renovation and expansion coming to Moody.
“This is not the destruction of one stadium,” Douglas said. “It is the beginning of a new dream that Larry Brown is leading at the helm.”
Douglas is hopeful for the future and maybe for good reason. The renovation and expansion adds 38,000 square feet of interior space.
“We’re putting in new seats, new bleachers, a new scoreboard, an all new heating and cooling system, more restrooms and more concession offerings,” university architect Philip Jabour said.
Jabour said that, as of now, the concourse is “tight and dark, with low ceilings.”
“That’s all going to be gone. The concourse will be widened. The lobby will be opened up to the bowl,” Jabour said.
The renovation and expansion will continue for months and will affect several annual school events normally held in Moody. Most notably, May graduation will be moved to the main quad south of Dallas Hall.
Moody is scheduled to open again in December, with the renovation and expansion fully complete.
“The first event will be December graduation and basketball season will follow thereafter,” Jabour said.