WVU Coliseum

The WVU Coliseum is a 14,000-seat multi-purpose arena located on the Evansdale campus of West Virginia University in Morgantown, West Virginia. The circular arena features a poured concrete roof. It was built with state funds and replaced the WVU Fieldhouse, which seated 6,000.

West Virginia University Coliseum
WVU Coliseum.jpg
LocationMonongahela Boulevard
Morgantown, WV 26505
Coordinates39°38′57″N 79°58′52″W / 39.64917°N 79.98111°W / 39.64917; -79.98111Coordinates: 39°38′57″N 79°58′52″W / 39.64917°N 79.98111°W / 39.64917; -79.98111
OwnerWest Virginia University
OperatorWest Virginia University
Capacity14,000
SurfaceHardwood
Construction
Broke groundDecember 21, 1968
OpenedDecember 1, 1970
Construction cost$10.4 million
($68.5 million in 2019 dollars[1])
ArchitectSilling Associates, Inc.
General contractorMcDevitt & Street Co.
Tenants
West Virginia Mountaineers (NCAA)
Men's basketball (1970–present)
Women's basketball (1973–present)
Women's volleyball (1973–present)
Women's gymnastics (1973–present)
Wrestling (1970–present)
WVU's Evansdale campus around 1970 just after the construction of the coliseum.

HistoryEdit

The Coliseum, which opened in 1970, has more than 10.5 million cubic feet (300,000 m3) of space. It is home to West Virginia University Mountaineers sports teams, including the men's and women's basketball teams, men's wrestling, and women's volleyball and gymnastics. There is also a 3,000-square-foot (280 m2) weight room located in the lower level of the Coliseum. The arena has nearly 100 offices, 13 lecture and seminar rooms, a dance studio, safety lab, racquetball and squash courts, and the Jerry West Mountaineer Room, which holds nearly 150 people for meetings. The arena also has more than 1,000 individual locker units in various dressing rooms available for students and staff.

The Coliseum has been used for music concerts but the concrete roof has poor sound distribution properties, so other venues in town are more appropriate for this purpose. The poor sound quality was purposeful, as it was the intention of the designers to cup the ceiling so that crowd noise generated at basketball games would be directed back to the floor. The seating at the venue was also designed for optimized viewing during sporting events, making the setup for concerts to be not as optimal as other large arenas.

The first event held at the Coliseum was a Grand Funk Railroad concert in 1970,[2] with the first game then taking place on 1 December 1970.[3] The Coliseum was one of the sites for games of the 1974 NCAA Men's Division I Basketball Tournament. Other National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) men's Division I college basketball events it has hosted include the ECAC South Region Tournament organized by the Eastern College Athletic Conference (ECAC) in 1975 and 1976[4][5] and the Atlantic 10 Conference men's basketball tournament in 1984 and 1988.

During the 1998-99 season, the Jerry West Lounge, named for WVU and NBA Hall-of-Famer Jerry West, was formally dedicated. A display showcasing the highlights of the Mountaineer great flanks the entrance to the lounge. In November 2005, the University announced that a life size bronze statue of West would adorn the Blue Gate entrance of the Coliseum, and the statue has since been installed there. West's number is retired and a sign hangs over the seating section formerly designated Section 44 (now Section 236, after renovation) with "Jerry West 44" written on it. Hot Rod Hundley's number 33 also is retired and hangs from the walls. On February 29, 2020, the number 44 was retired again in honor of Rod Thorn, who had worn the number immediately after West; Thorn's sign hangs over Section 226.

In 1999-2000, the school was forced to play a year of games split between Wheeling and Charleston, and the gymnasium at nearby Fairmont State University while asbestos was removed from the Coliseum.

In 2004 the Coliseum underwent an upgrade which included renovations to the men's and women's locker rooms, construction of a player's lounge and team video theater, expansion of the equipment and athletic training rooms, refurbishment of the Coliseum roof, and construction of a club seating area in the main arena complete with a private space for concessions, hospitality area, and rest rooms under the lower level seats.

In 2008, the Coliseum received a new video scoreboard, a new public address system, a new lighting system, two LED ribbon boards, and a new floor design. WVU Athletic Director Ed Pastilong also announced the construction of a new $20–$22 million practice facility to be built adjacent to the Coliseum.

In 2016, the concourse area of the Coliseum underwent major renovation to enhance the fan experience, widening the concourse for better traffic flow, adding new concession areas (including self-serve options), and more than doubling the building's restroom capacity. During the summer of 2020, the arena's original 1970-era seats (for which parts are no longer available) will be replaced. The re-seating project will not change the Coliseum's seating capacity. The arena will also receive a new video scoreboard, with a larger display area and higher resolution than the current scoreboard.

Top Crowds at the ColiseumEdit

 
Interior, 2017 during game vs Texas A&M
Highest attendance at WVU Coliseum[6]
Rank Attendance Date Game Result
1 16,704 Feb. 24, 1982 #6 West Virginia 82, Pittsburgh 77
2 15,835 Jan. 27, 2018 #7 West Virginia 76, Kentucky 83
3 15,638 Feb. 27, 1983 West Virginia 87, #1 UNLV 78
4 15,593 Feb. 8, 2010 #5 West Virginia 75, #4 Villanova 82
5 15,419 Feb. 3, 2010 #6 West Virginia 77, #21 Pittsburgh 51
6 15,409 Dec. 4, 1982 West Virginia 95, Marshall 82
7 15,299 Jan. 31, 1981 West Virginia 76, Pittsburgh 63
8 15,289 Feb. 20, 2016 #10 West Virginia 61, #3 Oklahoma 50
9 15,271 Jan. 16, 2010 #9 West Virginia 71, #5 Syracuse 72
10 15,193 Dec. 2, 1995 West Virginia 83, #6 Georgetown 86 (OT)
11 15,167 Feb. 11, 1998 #16 West Virginia 80, #6 UConn 62
12 15,118 Feb. 17 1979 West Virginia 54, #3 Notre Dame 70
13 15,106 Jan. 6, 2018 #6 West Virginia 89, #7 Oklahoma 76
14 15,033 Jan. 23, 2010 #11 West Virginia 71, #21 Ohio State 65
15 15,032 Mar. 5, 2011 West Virginia 72, #11 Louisville 70

Year by Year ResultsEdit

 
Interior, Summer 2007
  • West Virginia Men's Basketball season results in the Coliseum
Year Record Win Percentage
1970-71 9-4 .692
1971-72 11-4 .733
1972-73 8-6 .571
1973-74 8-4 .667
1974-75 8-6 .571
1975-76 12-4 .750
1976-77 11-1 .917
1977-78 8-4 .667
1978-79 14-4 .778
1979-80 8-7 .554
1980-81 19-1 .950
1981-82 15-0 1.000
1982-83 13-1 .929
1983-84 15-2 .882
1984-85 13-3 .813
1985-86 14-2 .875
1986-87 10-6 .625
1988-89 12-2 .857
1989-90 12-1 .923
1990-91 13-2 .867
1991-92 10-3 .769
1992-93 14-1 .933
1993-94 13-3 .813
1994-95 9-4 .692
1995-96 9-5 .643
1996-97 12-4 .750
1997-98 13-1 .929
1998-99 6-7 .462
1999-00 Closed for Asbestos Removal N/A
2000-01 12-4 .750
2001-02 5-8 .385
2002-03 9-5 .643
2003-04 10-4 .714
2004-05 11-3 .786
2005-06 13-2 .867
2006-07 17-1 .944
2007-08 14-2 .875
2008-09 11-2 .846
2009-10 12-2 .857
2010-11 12-2 .857
2011-12 11-5 .688
2012-13 8-6 .571
2013-14 11-5 .688
2014-15 12-3 .800
2015-16 13-2 .867
2016-17 16-2 .889
2017-18 14-3 .823
2018-19 10-6 .625

OVERALL: 549–159 (.776)

See alsoEdit

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis. "Consumer Price Index (estimate) 1800–". Retrieved January 1, 2020.
  2. ^ "WVU Coliseum Tickets". Retrieved 6 December 2017.
  3. ^ "WVU Coliseum". wvusports.com. Retrieved 6 December 2017.
  4. ^ Varsity Pride: 1975 ECAC Men's Basketball Tournaments
  5. ^ Varsity Pride: 1976 ECAC Men's Basketball Tournaments
  6. ^ https://www.sports-reference.com/cbb/schools/west-virginia/

External linksEdit