Moody Coliseum renovations to set facility apart
Published: Thursday, October 11, 2012
Updated: Tuesday, November 20, 2012 17:11
SMU Athletics jump started its fall season with a “Tipoff at Moody” event spotlighting SMU basketball and volleyball on Oct. 10. Team members and coaches honored donors who gave more than $1 million to the renovation and expansion of Moody Coliseum.
A stage was set up like a suite for honored guests and school officials. The “starting lineup” included SMU President R. Gerald Turner, Athletic Director Rick Hart, men’s head basketball coach Larry Brown and women’s head basketball coach Rhonda Rompola.
“Many of you are regulars at this building and you have certainly let it be known for years that there needed to be some updates and improvement,” Turner said. “Antiques are only good for so long and we decided after half a century it’d be about time for a touch-up.
The three-hour event focused on expansion and renovation plans for Moody. Renovations have already begun on the north side.
Turner explained all the steps to designing Moody and how school officials have toured other arenas around the country for inspiration. Turner pointed out that once the renovations are done, Moody will feel like the storied Cameron Indoor at Duke University.
The cost of the Moody renovations is estimated at $47 million, but the final cost will not be known until the end of October. SMU has already raised $36 million for the renovation thanks in part to major gifts by the Moody Foundation and the Miller family.
“When we enter the Big East for the first basketball season, Jan. 1 of 2014, Mustangs will be very proud to have schools from all over come in here and play our basketball and volleyball teams,” Turner said.
SMU Board of Trustee member Paul Loyd spoke about bring back the tradition of “Moody Madness.”
“Certainly for me and a lot of other people here, there is a lot of tradition in this building. We’re going to get that tradition back where you have conference championships, and NCAA tournament appearances,” Loyd said.
New SMU Athletic Director Rick Hart spoke about how happy he is to be welcomed by a renovated arena.
“There are few things better to welcome a new athletics director than to learn that your coliseum is going to be renovated to a level, which will compare with some of the finest athletics facilities in the country,” Hart said.