Davis Wade Stadium

Davis Wade Stadium is the home playing venue for the Mississippi State Bulldogs football team. Located in Starkville, Mississippi, the stadium has a capacity of 55,082. It was built in 1914 as Scott Field and was named for Don Magruder Scott, an Olympic sprinter and one of the University's first football stars. The name of the playing surface is still Scott Field. The stadium is named after Floyd Davis Wade, Sr., who made the latest expansion possible through donations toward the project, which was completed in 2002. It is the second oldest Division I FBS college football stadium.

History

Construction projects in 1936 and 1948 resulted in a concrete grandstand structure with a capacity of 35,000. In 1983, the endzone seating was removed, reducing the capacity to 32,000. A 1986 expansion costing $7.2 million, raised without state budget appropriations, added almost 9,000 seats, consisting primarily of a 5,500-seat upper deck as well as permanent lighting and a computerized scoreboard which was replaced in 1997 with a Sony JumboTron. The Frank Turman Fieldhouse received an additional floor to its facility in 1990. Named the Leo W. Seal M-Club Centre, the addition was named in honor of Leo W. Seal, Sr., a two-year letterwinner at State, is a meeting place for the letterman organization, the M-Club. In 1999, the Turman Fieldhouse underwent numerous changes, including remodeled dressing rooms for both teams, and an all-new recruiting lounge.

The current capacity of 55,082 was reached with a $30 million expansion completed in 2002. The latest expansion included 50 skyboxes, 1,700 club-level seats and a second upper deck seating 7,000. A large donation from Floyd Davis Wade Sr., of Meridian, MS was instrumental in making the expansion possible and the stadium was renamed in his honor.

The first division I-A college football game played post 9-11 was in this stadium between Mississippi State and the South Carolina Gamecocks on September 20, 2001, and broadcast on ESPN.

In Fall 2008, in the south endzone, above the Leo Seal M-Club Centre, construction finished on an all-new $6.1 million 112 ft (34 m) wide by 48 ft (15 m) tall high-definition video display board to replace the Sony JumboTron that was installed in the north endzone in 1997. The LED video system is the second largest high-definition video board in college football behind Godzillatron at The University of Texas's Darrell K Royal Stadium. The new board was used for the first time on November 1, 2008, during the Mississippi State Bulldogs vs. Kentucky Wildcats football game. The main video display is complemented with two high definition LED advertising boards on each side of the main board, as well as a high definition LED "ribbon ticker" which spans the width of the structure below the main board. Therefore, the total video board square footage (on one structure) is 6,896 sq. ft. .

To complement the all-new video system, a new state-of-the-art sound system has been installed by Pro Sound, headquartered in Miami, Florida.

Since October 2009, Davis Wade Stadium has seen ten consecutive sellouts and an increase in season ticket sales. The stadium's attendance record was broken twice during the 2009 season, including the Florida (57,178) and Alabama (58,103) games. Currently, the Athletic Department, along with Populous, a world-renowned sports architecture firm, are compiling a long-term expansion and renovation plan for Davis Wade Stadium. Current renderings suggest that the stadium could one day hold up to 75,000 spectators. The Athletic Department states that plans are in the very early stages.

Facts and Trivia
  • The all-new high definition video board is currently the largest video board in the SEC and second largest on-campus video board in the nation. (List of largest scoreboards in NCAA college football)
  • The record attendance for a football game is 58,103, set on November 14, 2009 against the Alabama Crimson Tide. Davis Wade Stadium
  • The entire concourse area underneath the East Upper Deck is sealed and climate-controlled.
  • Davis Wade Stadium is one of the locations of the Egg Bowl, the annual rivalry match up between the Mississippi State Bulldogs and the Ole Miss Rebels of the University of Mississippi. The game alternates between Davis Wade Stadium and Vaught-Hemingway Stadium on the Ole Miss campus. The 100th game between the teams was played at Davis Wade Stadium. Because of the way the locations alternate from year to year, Mississippi State hosts on the odd-numbered years and Ole Miss hosts on the even-numbered years. Egg Bowl
  • Davis Wade Stadium is sometimes referred to as the "Dawg Pound" and is home to the dance called the "Dawg Pound Rock." Who Let the Dogs Out?
  • Mississippi State is credited with being the first to use the song Who Let The Dogs Out? at a sporting event. It was played before and during Mississippi State football games and was used for the Dawg Pound Rock once it was moved from the field to the sidelines. Although put on hiatus during Sylvester Croom's tenure as Mississippi State head coach, the Dawg Pound Rock and the song made a popular return in the 2009 season.

Traditions
  • The Junction is a grassy park on campus where Bulldog fans tailgate under tents during sports weekends. It is named The Junction for the railroad (and the defunct railroad bed later)that ran through the tailgating area prior to the construction of The Junction. It also replaced "Malfunction Junction", a set of adjacent intersections where 6 different streets entered into campus. The streets were rerouted around the area and a pedestrian park was built, then "The Junction" developed on the site. While many Bulldog fans tailgate in other places on campus, The Junction is unique in that it allows thousands of fans to tailgate under tents directly in front of the stadium without cars or traffic. The Junction has been referred to as the “premier tailgate experience” by the Birmingham-based firm contracted for its design and development.
  • The "Dawg Walk" is held approximately three hours before each home game. This is where the team and coaches walk through The Junction to the stadium with the MSU band playing and thousands of Bulldog fans lining the walk, cheering the players on.
  • One of the Bulldogs' proudest and longest traditions is the ringing of cowbells. From 1977 to 2009, "artificial noisemakers" were banned by the SEC, including cowbells, but fans continued to bring them in even though administrators encouraged fans not to use cowbells and security guards "search" you upon entry. There could be as many as 40,000 cowbells in the stadium during a big game. In the 2010 season, a compromise was reached on a trial basis allowing fans to legally bring cowbells under SEC rules to games at Davis Wade Stadium as long as the cowbells were only used at sanctioned times: Pregame, quarter breaks and Half-time, Time Outs, and when Mississippi State scores.

Media

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Building Activity

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