BOZEMAN — Montana State has succeeded in the largest athletics fundraising campaign in university history, raising $18 million for the Bobcat Athletic Complex, an addition planned for the north end of Bobcat Stadium that will be the new home for MSU’s football program.
MSU announced that it had hit its fundraising goal in a press release Friday afternoon.
Construction will begin on the 40,000-square-foot addition after the current football season. The facility is expected to open before the 2021 football season.
“Our private donors are helping to change the face of MSU Athletics, providing us with the tools we need to help create champions — both in the classroom and in life,” MSU athletics director Leon Costello said in a press release. “For that opportunity, we are immensely grateful.”
The Bobcat Athletic Complex is part of Phase I of a facilities master plan that was published in 2017. The two-story facility will house locker rooms, athletic training spaces, team meeting rooms, rehabilitation spaces, equipment storage and offices for coaches.
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In addition to the BAC, the project will transform the office space vacated by the football coaches in the Brick Breeden Fieldhouse into a 3,400-square-foot tutoring, academic advising and study area for all student-athletes.
“These additions and improvements will provide essential resources for student-athlete success, whether it’s on the field or in the classroom,” Costello said in the release. “Their impact will be felt by every program and every student-athlete.”
At the July meeting of the state Board of Regents in Helena, the university received authority to spend up to $18 million in non-state funds for construction of the project, including gifts, donations and in-kind contributions. Up to $3 million will be financed by MSU, to be repaid from athletics revenues. No taxpayer money will be used to fund the project.
MSU Alumni Foundation president and CEO Chris Murray said more than 500 donors have contributed to the BAC.
Future goals in the master plan include renovations at the fieldhouse and stadium, as well as new or expanded facilities for track, tennis and golf, to meet the needs of student-athletes and provide space for students, faculty and staff.