The first publicly available renderings of the renovations intending to be done at David Booth Memorial Stadium, home of KU Football, have perplexed some fans and pundits alike. KU Athletics is planning on REDUCING the seating capacity to around 40,000 to "accommodate for facilities needed to improve the stadium experience" per multiple sources. Per Mike Vernon, most recent renderings have the stadium closing the open-end zone, building a tunnel from the locker room to the field, a potential sunroof, more suites that are better seats, and stands located closer to the field, among other things that, depending on budget, could also be in the cards. A reminder that KU's budget for these renovations is not set and will more than likely be set over the next few months once they batten down what exactly their plan is. These are early renderings, the first to be publicly available as said before, so there's plenty of room for change and for input, and input there was as many made their feelings known.
The big question is, what does KU value more and what does college football at large (and at the moment) value more? The quantity of seats, or the quality of the experience? History says quality has prevailed in the case of recruiting and building for a better future of an up-and-coming program, and I'll explain why. The problem with KU is that they do not have the football boosters and donors that big name programs have, and I'm not talking about the wine and cheese, I own a yacht in Bora Bora donors. I'm talking smaller, lower-tier donors that buy season tickets and are dedicated to the program. Mind you, KU Football only got back to even middle of the road this past year and still has a bit to go before becoming an Oklahoma or Texas. They do not get there without a lot of this smaller support and donation. They need to, as the popular saying goes, #PackTheBooth. They need people numbers as well as monetary numbers. By having season ticket holders and by having smaller donors rather than a few bigger ones (though still important), they build to having the monetary and people power to build more seats AS WELL AS build the quality of the stadium. First though, is improving the quality of the stadium, of which has been a major issue for years that NEEDS fixing, KU Football doesn't need more seats as of yet. This is what this renovation will be for first and it doesn't hurt recruiting or attendance. Less people are attending sports games to begin with, recruits care a lot about the quality of facilities, and KU needs to build the program toward having a massive stadium before they can even think about building one, so this makes sense. It's a small decrease but will pay off big in the end.
However, what do you think? Does stadium quantity or quality matter more? Is KU making the right decisions in regard to the future of their football program? Let me know in the comments below!
Burn Notice: 10/10 Can't we just burn the Booth down and start over?