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Arizona State releases renderings for major overhaul to Sun Devil Stadium


Sun Devil Stadium doesn't belong to the stadium fraternity of lore that so many of its counterparts benefit from. It's not particularly old, it's not particularly big, and it hasn't an abnormal number of great teams. But it does hold a distinction that no other venue enjoys. It's the only college-specific stadium in America to crown an NFL and college football stadium. Miami's Orange Bowl is now extinct, New Orleans has hosted a number of Super Bowls and college championships but it belongs to the Saints before Tulane, Tampa has not yet had its crack at the College Football Playoff Championship, and it's a pro stadium anyway. 

It's a place worth preserving, and Arizona State plans to do just that.

The Sun Devils will sink $210 million into a three-year project that will essentially hollow out the stadium and give it an entirely new interior, with a new lower bowl with improved leg room and sight lines, rip out 5,700 seats from the upper deck, and install a new concert-friendly plaza with a state-of-the-art video board. 

Construction begins in earnest in 2015, and the Sun Devils will continue to play in Sun Devil Stadium during the renovation. 

"We've got many, many, many important projects at ASU. Projects that have to do with the production of nurses, and engineers, and scientists, and business leaders, as opposed to a stadium which is used a few times a year," ASU president Dr. Michael Crow said. "Yet we have decided, in the context of advancing the institution, that this is a project of immense importance and priority to us for the further evolution and advancement of our football program.

"Football is extremely important to our culture and how it's framed and how it moves forward. Therefore needing a place - this stadium - to advance on this stadium with the full engagement of everything Arizona State University has."

The program has taken strides in two years under Todd Graham, and the improved stadium will allow Arizona State with the rest of a Pac-12 Conference that has quickly rushed into a Cold War-sytle arms race. 

"It's going to be a great opportunity to see the future with Coach Graham and what ASU has to offer," said Tempe mayor Mark Mitchell. 

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