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OU Board of Regents considers athletic facility renovations, relocation of Student Athletic Academic Service

Joseph Harroz

OU President Joseph Harroz at the OU Board of Regents meeting March 9.

The OU Board of Regents considered a number of athletic facilities improvements during its meeting on Friday. 

Funding for redevelopment of the Bud Wilkinson House, updates to Gaylord Family-Oklahoma Memorial Stadium, and suite renovations at the Lloyd Noble Center were discussed. 

Regents also considered expansion and improvements of baseball and softball facilities. 

“The University of Oklahoma’s Campus Master Plan of Capital Improvement Projects is produced each year as it is a requirement by the Oklahoma State Regents of Higher Education," an athletic department spokesperson said in a statement. "The plan is shared with state leadership for consideration of long-term appropriations to higher education."

"OU’s plan includes a range of endeavors, some of which — including athletics projects – have been on the docket for many years. As it does every year, this year’s plan reflects the university’s long-term planning and inflation-adjusted project costs.”

The regents meeting agenda detailed a review of the Northeast corner of Lindsey Street and Jenkins Avenue where the Wilkinson House is located, with the possibility of a relocation of the Student Athlete Academic Service to the area.  

Collaborative learning areas, administrative office space, Varsity O-Club facilities and multipurpose space are also possible futures for the Wilkinson House area, according to the agenda. Retooling the space is estimated to cost $75 million with funding from private and athletics department sources. 

Tim Headington, a long-time OU supporter and chief executive officer and owner of Headington Oil, donated $10 million to support the athletic department and the construction of a student-athlete success center.

Regents considered new proposals for updates to the master plan for Gaylord Family-Oklahoma Memorial Stadium ahead of the Sooners’ move to the Southeastern Conference by 2025, with an estimated total cost of $300 million. 

Proposed enhancements to the stadium include additional concourses and seating, more space for game day, press and athletics administration operations and “the demolition of the existing press box structure and construction of a new west addition that will include significantly improved patron and fan amenities.”

The Daily learned from a request for proposal posted by the university in April that OU is also seeking bids for lighting upgrades to mirror those of SEC programs.

Updates and improvements to the men’s and women’s basketball team suites at the Lloyd Noble Center at a cost of $6 million were also up for discussion. The investment proposal comes despite the sustained concept of OU building a new arena in the near future.

The new updates to the arena are in "preliminary design development," an athletic department spokesperson told The Daily, with no clarity on the decision. 

Proposed improvements to L. Dale Mitchell Park include spectator seating, fan amenities, team facilities and other site improvements at an estimated cost of $30 million, according to the agenda. Improvements to the OU Softball Complex include updating spectator seating, fan amenities, team facilities, parking expansion and other site improvement at an estimated cost of $42 million, despite plans for a new stadium, Love’s Field, to open in 2024. 

Regents also discussed expansion and improvement of the Sam Viersen Gymnastics Center, Mosier Indoor Track Facility, Headington Family Tennis Center and Charlie Coe Golf Learning Center.

Assistant sports editor

Colton Sulley is one of the OU Daily's assistant sports editors and covers OU football. He is a junior majoring in journalism. 

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