A Letter from A.D. John Currie - November 3, 2015

Dear K-State Nation,

Today, I'm pleased to make an exciting announcement about an upgrade for the Pride of Wildcat Land Marching Band and an update on Phase IIIB of the Bill Snyder Family Stadium Master Plan.

Following months of discussion and planning with Dr. Frank Tracz and our student government leadership, the 2015 Sudler Trophy recipients will have a new permanent home inside Bill Snyder Family Stadium as part of the Phase IIIB project. The 400-plus member group will occupy a specially designed and one-of-a-kind area below the concourse walkway similar in positioning to the new Wabash Landing in the northwest corner. With design guidance from Dr. Tracz beginning last spring, this unique section will not only provide more space and accessibility to accommodate members of band but will also dramatically increase visibility and sound projection of the marching band for the better enjoyment of K-State fans throughout Bill Snyder Family Stadium in keeping with the department’s commitment to The Best Fan Experience in the Big 12.

You can click here for our full release, which includes the following comments from Dr. Tracz:

“This is a tremendous opportunity for The Pride of Wildcat Land Marching Band to have our very own showcase stage in Bill Snyder Family Stadium. Not only will we be seen and heard by areas of the stadium that previously could not enjoy our music, this new area will also increase much-needed storage space for our game day equipment and improve the overall safety of our band members and instruments with a dedicated stairway to the field. Most importantly, the new section maintains our important connection to the students, continuing to create an intimidating environment for the visiting team.”

Additionally, the changes associated with this phase also include modifications to Section 1 on the west side of the stadium to finish connecting the bowl by adding seats to fill the current temporary grassy "gap" between Section 1 and the new Wabash Landing. All current season ticket holders in Section 1 will be contacted and assigned seats in the new section that are comparable to their current location while also having the opportunity to visit with the K-State Ticket Office about relocation options following the season ticket renewal period in April.

Fundraising momentum continues for funding of Phase IIIB as more than $10 million of the estimated $15 million cost has been pledged to the project. When finished, Phase IIIB will complete the northeast corner of the stadium as envisioned in the 2010 Master Plan and provide K-State fans with a fully enclosed stadium bowl as well as other spectator and operational enhancements.

Continuing our commitment to fiscal responsibility, we will again depend on individuals throughout Wildcat Nation to build on the $10 million already pledged to reach the $15 million goal. The project will be funded without incurring any long-term debt and without any state tax or university funds. We are extremely grateful for the generosity and leadership to date of many of our donors and are working hard to further close the gap on the remaining commitments needed to move forward with Phase IIIB before the final home game against West Virginia. Click here for more information including how you can help with the project and be part of history as we “finish the bowl.”

No. 2 Baylor Visits BSFS on Thursday Night
Thursday night’s football game against second-ranked Baylor provides us another special opportunity to showcase our program and university on FS1’s Thursday Night College Football platform. As we approach the game, I want to provide some thoughts and details that will allow you a smoother trip to and from the stadium.

Plan Ahead
Coach Snyder and our football team have shown tremendous grit so far this season while facing numerous injuries and a stretch of five weeks of facing four teams which have all been ranked in the Top 12 this season. We need our 25th-straight sellout crowd to be loud and proud on Thursday night when the Bears come to town.

Arrive early. Be patient. The kickoff time of 6:30 p.m., will create unique traffic issues in the Manhattan community as schools dismiss and normal rush-hour traffic competes with gameday traffic. Remember, November 5 will be a “business as usual” day at K-State with classes in session and campus open. Stadium and nearby satellite parking lots will open at 1:30 p.m., five hours prior to kickoff as normal on a gameday. The Veterinary Medicine Complex lot on Denison will have only limited parking available until classes dismiss around 5 p.m. Ample parking will be available at the Equestrian Center north of the fire station on Denison. Click here for more parking info surrounding Thursday’s game.

Again, please, please be extra careful of local children on foot and bikes and in busses making their way home after school.

Welcome to K-State!
Several special visitors will be on hand for Thursday’s game, including numerous bowl scouts and ESPN Senior Vice President Rosalyn Durant, who at 9:30 a.m., Thursday will give the annual Huck Boyd Lecture at the K-State Alumni Association, hosted by the A. Q. Miller School of Journalism and Mass Communications. I have enjoyed getting to know Rosalyn over the years and look forward to her first-ever visit to Manhattan and a K-State football game. Click here for more information on the Huck Boyd Leadership Lecture. Also, former Wildcat and NFL MVP Larry Brown will be back to campus for the first time since he was drafted in 1969! He attended our 2015 Spring Game in Kansas City as an honorary captain, and we look forward to having Larry back in Manhattan.

The K-State Brand
Recent designations such as Manhattan being named the No. 1 college town in America and K-State being cited as one of the best values for a college graduate (click here for that article) are great signs as we make continued progress of our vision of being a Model Intercollegiate Athletics Program and also President Schulz’s K-State 2025 vision of becoming a Top 50 public research institution. The K-State brand has become stronger and stronger across the nation each and every year, and I just want to take a few moments to thank our students and fans for doing their part in making our “scene” one of the best in the nation. Every little detail matters, and we are continuing to see the K-State brand grow on a national level.

Basketball Season Underway
Both basketball teams have exhibition games under their belts as the men’s team opened up the season with an 80-42 win over Emporia State with four players scoring in double figures. Coach Mittie’s women’s squad opened up the season Monday night with a 75-48 win over Washburn behind Breanna Lewis’ 22 points. Your next chance to see some exciting Wildcat basketball will be Friday night as the men take on Fort Hays State at 7 p.m. in a game that will be televised on FOX Sports Kansas City (state of Kansas, Kansas City area), K-StateHD.TV and ESPN3. The women will next host Pitt State at 7 p.m. on Monday, so we look forward to seeing you in Bramlage for hoops action.

Finally, congratulations to junior cross country runner Morgan Wedekind who earned an individual medal at last weekend’s Big 12 Cross Country Championships after finishing in 10th place!  And how about those Royals! Congrats to all of our good friends in the Royals organization on winning the World Series, and seeing the impact the team had on baseball fans across the Midwest was a joy to watch.

That will do it for today. We look forward to an awesome environment Thursday night at Bill Snyder Family Stadium, and we thank you for the unparalleled support of YOUR K-State student-athletes.

Go Cats!

John