Boise State athletics looks to transform campus with improved facilities for students and fans
Boise State Executive Director of Athletics Jeramiah Dickey called it “unprecedented and bold.” No doubt, the Athletics Master Village vision unveiled in 2022, with a price tag of more than $300 million, to completely upgrade every athletics facility on campus is exactly that. But also, in the never-ending arms race that is college athletics, it’s necessary to stay on top.
“Our goal has been to define the direction for Bronco Nation. Part of that was to create a master plan around our athletic facilities,” Dickey said, adding that the university has not done a capital campaign in close to 10 years and has not built a new athletic facility in nearly as long.
Priorities include the north end zone of Albertsons Stadium. A new space will offer premium seating on game days and a dining hall for student-athletes. An expansion of the Arguinchona Basketball Complex and upgrades to ExtraMile Arena (loge boxes and a club space) are also high on the list.
All of the projects, Dickey said, will benefit fans and student- athletes. They will provide more spaces for the university to monetize its athletic programs and be more competitive in recruiting.
A Record Year
“From conference realignment to recruiting, marketing, revenue; it’s significant to get everything started quickly,” said Cody Gougler, senior associate athletic director. “We’ve got to provide the best possible fan experience to encourage the community to come to our games and support student-athletes.”
Excitement about the project is becoming quantifiable. The athletic department received a record $24.1 million in fundraising support during fiscal year 2022 and welcomed 2,000 new season ticket holders for the 2022 football season and more than 1,200 for the 2022-23 men’s basketball season.
Other factors reflect untapped potential when it comes to fundraising. Spring 2022 saw a record number of graduates. Nearly two-thirds of Boise State graduates live in or near the Treasure Valley — one of the fastest growing regions in the country.
In Good Hands
Though the Athletics Master Village is ambitious, Boise State’s athletics brass has experience raising serious money for major projects.
Dickey and Gougler both came from Baylor University which raised $200 million for athletics as part of a $1.1 billion university campaign. Dickey was the team lead on that project, along with overseeing fundraising records in seven straight years at his prior stop, the University of Houston.
He’s looking forward to what’s to come at Boise State, he said, and grateful for his partnerships with university advancement, the Boise State University Foundation and his athletics department team that are all helping to move this project forward.
“Bronco Nation is strong. One of the hardest things to do in college athletics is to establish a brand. People here have done a great job with that,” Dickey said. “We now have the opportunity to take that foundation that’s been created and do something epic.”
Among the Project’s Goals:
• A Varsity Center with a weight room, performance center, offices and more
• East and north side upgrades to Albertsons Stadium
• Upgrades to ExtraMile Arena, the Arguinchona Basketball Complex and Dona Larsen Park
• A 5,000-seat Olympic sports arena
• On-campus competition venues for soccer, indoor tennis and beach volleyball
By Dave Southorn