Boise State football is all about progress—and not just on the field.
It seems every year, another upgrade or potential upgrade is proposed to Bronco Stadium or the surrounding complex.
In 2006, it was the Caven Williams Sports Complex and Indoor Practice Facility. With its impressive 78,000 square feet, full-sized field turf football field and 70' high ceiling, it has a massive presence along side Bronco Stadium.
Towering over the stadium on the west side is the beautiful Stueckle Sky Center. Built in 2008, it is fully equipped with luxury suites, club seating, loge boxes, offices, banquet rooms, and, of course, the Double R Ranch Club.
In 2012, additional seating was added, and additional video monitors were placed strategically around the stadium. The track was also removed. It gave the entire place a much more intimate feel.
This year's upgrade, however, has to be the one the players and coaches are most excited about.
Slated to open in July 2013, the new Boise State football complex will be a 70,000 square foot site to see.
It will be the home of coaches' offices, meeting rooms, a player lounge, recruiting lounge, training facility with weight room, an academic and computer lab, and, of course, a brand new locker room for the Broncos.
You can see the progress of the football complex and updated pictures at KTVB.com.
With the football complex now nearing completion, it is only appropriate that a program bent on progress would announce another step in raising the bar.
A New Upgrade Is in the Works
According to Chadd Cripe of the Idaho Statesman, Boise State has received approval from the State Board of Education to go forward with a plan to purchase a $2 million video board.
The video board would be roughly 60 feet wide and 33 feet tall, according to the article. It would also have sound baskets and advertising areas, according to Cripe.
B.J. Rains @BJRains
Still unclear whether the video board will be installed in time for this season, but big news that BSU got it approved. #boisestate2013-5-15 23:27:47
The only downside for fans, in regards to this news, is that there is no official time line for adding the screen to the stadium. However, in reading Boise State Athletic Director Mark Coyle's statement, it sounds like the screen is one of the next things on the checklist.
Part of Coyle's statement reads:
A new video board is a priority for us, and one of the first steps in moving in that direction is gaining approval from the State Board of Education.
Coyle also mentioned that they are "constantly and aggressively looking for ways to enhance the fan experience at Bronco Stadium."
It was also announced on Wednesday by Sven Berg of the Idaho Statesman that city officials are looking at a preliminary proposal that would allow a much larger tailgating area to exist around Bronco Stadium.
It's not that those tailgating areas don't already exist, but the new proposal would allow fans to legally tailgate in those areas. Which would include allowing alcohol to be consumed inside the designated area within four hours of kickoff.
The article quotes city spokesman Adam Park as saying:
Everyone knows that there's drinking on tailgates. And this would allow that to go on in a safe fashion, but also a legal fashion
Currently, drinking alcohol is banned inside of Bronco Stadium, and the university did not request this change according to the article.
The proposed area would be from Brady Street down to Myrtle Street up and over to Broadway, down Beacon to Lincoln and back over to Brady. It is a very large area and should encompass nearly all tailgaters.
You can see a map of the area as part of the Idaho Statesman article.
A New Logo on the Field, but What About a New Sound System?
In the article previously mentioned, written by Cripe, it was noted that the Broncos are also in the process of replacing the logo on the center of The Blue in Bronco Stadium.
It will be the new primary logo, and there is a picture with the article.
However, you have to wonder, with a new video board, football complex and logo, will they also upgrade the sound system?
With all the work the university is doing to upgrade the fan experience, it seems like piling on. But, the one complaint heard the most during game time has to be the current sound system.
In an April 28 Idaho Statesman article, athletic director Mark Coyle said, "A new video board and sound system are priorities for us." However, he went on to say, "It's possible the Bronco Stadium video board could be replaced for this season." He was, of course, speaking of 2013.
He did not say that the sound system would be ready in 2013, which would be unfortunate. But, with a school working on a budget that is a fraction of what many others have, one step at a time seems to be working fine for the Broncos.
New sound system or not in 2013, Boise State continues to move forward. The new football complex, video board and even the logo are signs that the Broncos are a program still on the rise.
It helps the program continue momentum, and it makes the fan experience even better in Bronco Stadium.