Dec. 28, 2010
SEATTLE - The year 2010 was a great one for Husky athletics. Many teams and individuals won conference championships, advanced far in their respected postseasons and earned all-conference, all-region and All-American athletic and academic honors.
In honor of the great success from the past year, Gohuskies.com looks back on the top 10 stories from the calendar year in chronological order.
On November 18, 2010, the University of Washington Board of Regents approved a $250 million renovation of Husky Stadium, to be completed by the start of the 2013 UW football season. The renovation's funding model includes no public, state or university contributions, and the UW department of Intercollegiate Athletics will be responsible for all funding.
"We are pleased that the Board of Regents has given us the approval to move forward with the renovation," UW athletic director Scott Woodward said. "The approval allows us to take the next steps in a project which is vital to the success of our football program and our department."
Husky Stadium has historically been known as one of the finest college football venues in the country. A scenic landscape on the banks of Lake Washington and its iconic structure has made Husky Stadium one of the most unique football settings in America. However, in order to maintain that reputation, continue to attract top-caliber recruits, and provide the fan base with a first-class college football experience, a facility renovation was necessary. Husky Stadium currently faces some significant safety concerns and operational challenges which need to be fixed. In order to keep Husky Stadium fully functional and safe, these concerns and challenges needed to be addressed. Plans include the complete demolition and reconstruction of the lower bowl and south side upper stands, parts of the stadium that were originally constructed in 1950. The track will be removed and relocated to another on-campus site, and the field lowered four feet to bring seating closer to the playing surface and improve sightlines. A state-of-the-art football operations facility including team meeting rooms, recruiting facilities and coaches offices will be incorporated into the west side of the stadium. Premium seating opportunities, including 25 suites, 25 loge boxes, and over 2,500 club seats, will be built into the facility. Overall seating capacity is expected to remain similar to the current capacity.
"We are very excited about the renovation of Husky Stadium," Steve Sarkisian, UW head football coach, said. "An enhanced fan experience, while still embracing the great tradition it holds, will all be part of making our football program more competitive."
During the renovation, UW will play its 2012 home football season, and the November 26, 2011, Apple Cup game against Washington State at Qwest Field.
First and Goal will serve as the host of the 2011 Apple Cup, pricing and consigning tickets to UW to sell with first priority to their season ticket holders. Any unsold tickets will then be returned to First and Goal, who will open sales to the general public and assume any financial risk associated with hosting the game. Moving the game off campus will allow the Husky Stadium renovation to begin earlier and ensure completion by the start of the 2013 season. UW officials also estimate saving $3 million in construction costs by starting the project earlier.
The other six UW home games in the 2011 season will be played at Husky Stadium. UW's 2012 home season in Qwest provides a different financial arrangement, with the university pricing, allocating and selling all season and single-game tickets and providing a fee to First and Goal for usage costs associated with the event.
"We are thrilled to provide a first-class venue to our fans during the Husky Stadium renovation," Scott Woodward said. "First and Goal has been a terrific partner and we appreciate their flexibility and assistance. It is a luxury to have a world-class facility as our home-away-from-home only four miles from campus."
The Huskies will return home to campus for the 2013 season. "Ensuring that our fans are back in a renovated Husky Stadium for the 2013 season was priority number one for us," Woodward said. "When we found out that accelerating the ground-breaking would save us an additional $3 million, it became clear that moving the 2011 Apple Cup to Qwest is the right thing to do."
Check back for tomorrow's Top 10 story about the women's soccer teams run to the Elite 8.