The University of Texas, in Austin, is about to up its basketball game, in a major way. The University, who’s regents approved a $300 million expansion plan for a new basketball and events arena, has just gotten a massive boost from a familiar donor. The Moody Foundation is responsible for over $260 million in previous donations to schools in the University of Texas system.
The Moody Foundation is donating to this new basketball arena, which will bear the foundation’s name in recognition. The amount that The Moody Foundation is donating is $130 million and according to The University of Texas, represents the single largest donation that the foundation has made to the school. Other memorable donations have included $50 million dollars to the schools Moody College of Communication, and $20 million dollars to the campus’s Blanton Museum of Art.
The University of Texas does currently have a basketball and events arena, known as the Frank C. Erwin Jr. Center which is currently over 40 years old and will, in fact, be demolished to make room for expanded medical facilities. The Moody Center, which The University of Texas announced on November 9th was what the new arena would be called, will replace the older sports facilities. The new arena will open in 2022, and the earliest plans have called for basketball seating to be capped at 10,000 seats, with an additional 5,000 seats to be available for other non-sporting events.
Vice President, and Director of Athletics for of The University of Texas, Chris Del Conte had this to say about being awarded this massive grant towards the Moody Center construction: “When the Moody Center opens, it will be the finest college basketball arena in the country, hands down, as well as an unbelievable concert and entertainment venue for the entire city of Austin,” We cannot thank the Moody family and the Moody Foundation enough for their historic gift to The University of Texas.”
This is a huge deal for Texas Athletics, and will probably allow for the school to further promote their college basketball program. This grant is the largest received by the school ever from The Moody Foundation but seems to continue a tradition of supporting athletics programs in Texas.
By Lianne Hikind