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How Could OSU Improve the Boone Pickens Stadium Experience?



My parents came up from the Dallas area to catch a game during my freshman year on campus. They did not like it and practically swore they would never go back.

“There’s no space for your legs!” I remember my dad telling me. “You seriously have to sit sideways.”

Many of you know exactly what he is talking about, and the university did, too. So six months ago, Oklahoma State decreased the seating capacity by 3,500 in Boone Pickens Stadium, which is a good start.

Removing a few thousand seats in a 60,000-butt stadium won’t make a massive difference, at least I don’t think, so here are a few other ways to improve the fan and gameday experience in Stillwater for a top 10 team.

Take Even More Seats Out

Erecting a third deck of seating isn’t plausible, at least not this decade, so in the short term, getting the capacity closer to 50,000 is the way to go.

Now, you might think that would detract from the experience and therefore, possibly, the product on the field, but tap the brake. Kansas State and Stanford’s stadiums are at exactly 50k, and Utah, Baylor and TCU’s home games all host fewer than 46,000.

I went to the Baylor and TCU games (both on the road) last year, and the experiences were electric, especially at McLane Stadium.

It’s a selling point to recruits to boast the grandest stadium in the country, but as a program, you have to decide whether you want to recruit four-year players or 50-year fans. And OSU has started its decision for the latter.

See the full list of stadium capacities here.

Work on the Pregame

I have to be careful here because I know many of you love the pregame traditions (and the The Walk and march through the tunnel are fantastic), but something needs to be done.

Like I said, McLane Stadium was a great atmosphere. That’s an understatement. It was the best pregame and in-game experience of my life. First, the stadium is gorgeous. Second, the music, the graphics, the traditions and the introduction of the team was extremely sensory. Third, and I think this is where OSU can take from the most, it was homey and engaging enough to make everyone in the stadium feel as if they were about to play a 60-minute game, too.

OSU’s pregame is about tradition. I understand, but tradition could use some fire with that smoke.

USA Today


Let it flow like the state waterfall of Arkansas.

Texas introduced beer sales in 2015, and in the past home season alone, the university collected about $3.1 million, according to reports gathered by the Austin American-Statesman. Not all of that revenue was filtered through to UT, as some was caught in the net by the beer distributors, but come on.

In those reports, it showed that fans bought more than 230,000 beers. That’s absurd, and that money should be heading OSU’s way.

In 2015, the proposal picked up steam, but according to a report by The Tulsa World last summer, that’s mostly been shot down after Tulsa University adopted the movement.

“We continue to evaluate it but have no plans to change our policy at this time,” OSU Communications Director Gary Shutt told the World.

More Food Options

The Pizza Hut mini pies are amazing. Let’s do more of that.

Chick-fil-A, Taco Bell (or Bueno, I don’t care), Shortcakes — let’s get vegetarian options, vegan stands and barbecue. That’s not to say that the bites aren’t getting better. Cheesecake on a stick was a nice touch, and the Dippin’ Dots booths are nice early in the season. But we crave more.

Open to suggestions in the comments.

Improved Fan Interaction

Since Matt Fletcher left his post, this has lacked severely.

Again, I’m open to suggestions, but I feel like this is too obvious of an opportunity to publicly humiliate a fraternity freshman in front of 50,000 people that we aren’t taking advantage of. Have them kick field goals. Bring out a walk-on receiver and have them try to complete passes. Fan races.

OSU needs to bring some juice on Saturdays and get more fans and students on the field. Throwing a ball through a small hole at halftime isn’t enough.

Let’s hear your suggestions for what could be done to improve the experience in the comments below.

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