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Sonny Lubick Field at Hughes Stadium

Sonny Lubick Field at Hughes Stadium was an outdoor college football stadium located in Fort Collins, Colorado, United States. It was the home field of the Colorado State Rams of the Mountain West Conference from 1968 through 2016; the team moved to the new Colorado State Stadium, now known as Canvas Stadium, for the 2017 season.[2]

Sonny Lubick Field
at Hughes Stadium
Sonny Lubick Field at Hughes Stadium.jpg
Sonny Lubick Field at Hughes Stadium is located in the United States
Sonny Lubick Field at Hughes Stadium
Sonny Lubick Field
at Hughes Stadium
Location in the United States and Colorado
Sonny Lubick Field at Hughes Stadium is located in Colorado
Sonny Lubick Field at Hughes Stadium
Sonny Lubick Field
at Hughes Stadium
Sonny Lubick Field
at Hughes Stadium (Colorado)
Former namesHughes Stadium
(1968–2002)
LocationS. Overland Trail
Fort Collins, Colorado
Coordinates40°33′43″N 105°08′31″W / 40.562°N 105.142°W / 40.562; -105.142Coordinates: 40°33′43″N 105°08′31″W / 40.562°N 105.142°W / 40.562; -105.142
OwnerColorado State University
OperatorColorado State University
Capacity32,500 (2005–2016)[1]
30,000 (1969–2004)
Record attendance39,107 (vs. Utah, 1994)
SurfaceFieldTurf (2006–2016)
Grass (1968–2005)
Construction
Broke groundMay 1967
OpenedSeptember 28, 1968
Renovated2005
ClosedNovember 19, 2016
DemolishedApril 10, 2018 (start date)
Construction cost$2.8 million
ArchitectAller-Lingle Architects
(2005 renovation)
Tenants
Colorado State Rams (NCAA) (1968–2016)

Owned and operated by Colorado State University, it stood on a 161-acre (65 ha) site located about four miles (6 km) west of the school's main campus. At the time of its closure, future plans for Hughes Stadium were unknown, but it was unlikely to be left dormant, given away, or developed for high-density use.[3] CSU eventually decided to demolish the stadium and restore the site to its original bowl-shaped topography before selling the site for future development. Pre-demolition work began in March 2018 with hazardous material mitigation (mainly asbestos), with full-scale demolition beginning on April 10. Demolition continued into summer 2018, followed by filling in the stadium bowl with soil that had been originally used to create berms around the stadium. The project was expected to be completed in December 2018.[4]

Hughes Stadium opened in 1968 as the replacement for the old Colorado Field, a 14,000-seat on-campus stadium that is now the site of "Jack Christiansen Track".[5][6]

Hughes Stadium sat in a natural oval bowl, with seating on three sides and an open grass berm (not open for seating) behind the south end zone. The west (home side) stands were expanded out of the bowl and capped by a press box. The stadium was named for Harry W. Hughes, the head coach for 31 seasons (1911–41) at what was then known as Colorado Agricultural.[7]

The playing surface itself was named in 2003 in honor of then head coach Sonny Lubick. The winningest coach in school history, he led the Rams for fifteen seasons (1993-2007), winning six conference titles and nine bowl games. The field had a conventional north-south alignment.

The stadium had a seating capacity of 32,500 with club seats and 12 luxury suites, completed in 2005. The playing field, at an approximate elevation of 5,190 feet (1,580 m) above sea level,[8] was natural grass for the stadium's first 38 seasons; FieldTurf was installed in the summer of 2006.[9]

The first game at Hughes Stadium was played on September 28, 1968, a 17–12 loss to North Texas State, led by Mean Joe Greene. From October 1989 to August 1991, the Rams won eight consecutive games at the stadium, a school record. The last game at Hughes Stadium was played on November 19, 2016, with the Rams defeating New Mexico by a score of 49–31.

Bob Dylan recorded the NBC television special and live concert album Hard Rain at Hughes Stadium during a rainstorm in May 1976.[10][11]

AttendanceEdit

Attendance information for primary tenant, Colorado State Rams.[12]

Season Games Sellouts W-L Attendance Average % of Capacity
2002 5 3 4–1 152,037 30,461 102% of 30,000
2003 6 3 4–2 183,786 30,631 102% of 30,000
2004 6 3 3–3 163,776 27,296 91% of 30,000
2005 5 2 4–1 146,737 29,347 90% of 32,500
2006 5 1 2–3 120,916 24,183 75% of 32,500
2007 6 0 2–4 130,762 21,793 67% of 32,500
2008 6 0 4–2 126,046 21,007 65% of 32,500
2009 6 0 2–4 141,856 23,642 73% of 32,500
2010 5 0 2–3 111,998 22,400 69% of 32,500
2011 6 0 1–5 131,202 21,867 67% of 32,500
2012 6 0 3–3 115,501 19,250 59% of 32,500
2013 6 0 4–2 111,598 18,600 57% of 32,500
2014 6 2 6–0 159,450 26,575 82% of 32,500
2015 6 2 3–3 149,500 24,916 77% of 32,500
2016 6 1 5–1 165,598 27,600 85% of 32,500

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ Denver Post - Downsizing Hughes Stadium
  2. ^ [1]
  3. ^ [2] - 2016 to be Hughes Stadium’s swan song - December 28, 2015, Retrieved August 26, 2016
  4. ^ Lyell, Kelly (April 10, 2018). "Demolition of CSU's Hughes Stadium begins". Coloradoan. Fort Collins, CO. Retrieved April 25, 2018.
  5. ^ Hirn, John. "On-campus stadiums at CSU". Colorado State University Athletics. Retrieved September 17, 2017.
  6. ^ MacCambridge, Michael, ed. ESPN College Football Encyclopedia. New York: Hyperion, 2005, p. 238.
  7. ^ College Football Data Warehouse Archived 2008-03-27 at the Wayback Machine - CSU coaching records - Retrieved September 6, 2009
  8. ^ Topographic map & aerial photo. USGS The National Map. Retrieved September 6, 2009.
  9. ^ CSU Rams.com - FieldTurf installation - June 26, 2006, Retrieved September 6, 2009
  10. ^ Björner, Olof (2006). "Still On The Road: 1976 Rolling Thunder Revue II".
  11. ^ James, Peter (June 2003). "Warehouse Eyes - Hard Rain". Retrieved February 19, 2007.
  12. ^ "NCAA Football Attendance". Retrieved April 14, 2017.

External linksEdit