Other Stadium News

#1

fryeguy93

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#1
Randy Boyd says groundbreaking for new stadium could come as early as next fall

Tennessee Smokies owner Randy Boyd is confident that if things go as planned, crews will be breaking ground next fall on his proposed sports complex in the Old City next fall.

Little in a pandemic-induced 2020 has gone as planned to this point, so looking ahead to 2021 is a bit ambitious, but Boyd’s idea for his Double-A baseball team and new mixed-use home have always been ambitious.

As first reported by Knox News last week, both the city and county’s legislative bodies will be voting on the creation of a sports authority to oversee the construction and operation of the ballpark this month. Both mayors support the idea.


Will be interesting to see how this will effect the Baseball Vols.

With a high quality stadium this close to campus, it's hard to believe the Vols would not be welcome there for at least a few games a season. For postseason play, this stadium would be perfect to host region and super region play.

With the softball seating too low for their fanbase would it be possible to turn LNS into a softball facility and move the baseball team to the new stadium? I'm sure the softball team would prefer to be on campus and not next to the sewer treatment plant.

I'm sure the Old City businesses would appreciate 40 extra games a year with most games occurring before minor league season begins.

I'm not sure Boyd being current UT president would help due to appearance of conflict of interest
 
#3

fryeguy93

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#3
you are thinking way to strategically for the UT administration to understand.
Normally I would agree, but Randy Boyd and Phil Fulmer have actual "Real World" experience.

If UT could pass along stadium construction costs and at least a portion of the maintenance costs to an outside company; and also end up with a top tier facility, it would be too good to pass up. Softball could then end up with a large stadium they deserve in prime location.

I suspect Randy would have to resign the presidency to make this pass the smell test however.

I also now notice the words "Sports Complex" in the article. Could this area be designed to include future facilities such as a far better arena for Ice Bears and other events. Knoxville craves an arena of about 5,000 seats for hockey and other paid events like concerts.

It's clear, UT is desperate for an indoor track facility and upgrades at soccer stadium for future possible men's program. Maybe a cozier 3,000 seat gym for volleyball and gymnastics. Taking some of the financial weight off from baseball facility would help. In the future, maybe they decide to move back on campus.

Additionally, with the unsettled state of minor league baseball, UT baseball would be a good hedge against future uncertainty
 
#5

Thanos

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#5
You may see the Vols play a few games a year there, but don’t expect it to be the main home for UT. It’s just way too convenient for Lindsey Nelson to be a couple hundred yards from the players dorms, cafeteria and Thornton. That’s a major selling point in recruiting for UT.
 
#6

preacherman20

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#6
I know if it does not have turf it would never be considered by V. He is adamant about the pluses of turf. I could see them playing there occasionally but he is proud of the changes that he is making at LNS.
 
#7

fryeguy93

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#7
You may see the Vols play a few games a year there, but don’t expect it to be the main home for UT. It’s just way too convenient for Lindsey Nelson to be a couple hundred yards from the players dorms, cafeteria and Thornton. That’s a major selling point in recruiting for UT.
True to a point, but the current boom in off campus student apartments means most athletes past their freshman year live off campus anyway. They still eat at the Stokely dining hall and such. Just drive or bus back to apartment when done.

It will be interesting to see if some of the residences coming around the development will specialize in students. Would that not have been a blast as a student to live in apartment at baseball stadium and Old City!?!?

I think sharing a stadium makes so much financial sense for the time being, especially in current financial straits brought only shutdowns. Now that beer is allowed, that makes the logistics even easier.

The city, the local businesses and Boyd (whose family owns many of the nearby buildings and businesses in Old City) would love to see events at the stadium starting in February like college baseball.

The college and AA seasons would only overlap about 6 weeks (8 weeks if you count regional play). And that would be quite easy to work around. Ushers, concessions and others would have more consistent work under those circumstances. UT could also negotiate more money from parking charges. More concession money. More beer money. More parking money. More consistent attendance with more casual fans. More suite money. Easier access for fans with more parking. No shared parking with basketball and other arena events. Better facilities like lighting. No cost to build a AA class stadium. Higher visibility to the general public.
 
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#8

fryeguy93

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#8
I know if it does not have turf it would never be considered by V. He is adamant about the pluses of turf. I could see them playing there occasionally but he is proud of the changes that he is making at LNS.
You bring up a great point. I don't think there are any Southern League stadiums that are not real grass. I know the old stadium in Memphis (Chicks) had real grass OF but artificial turf infield. I know a few class A teams in Virginia and Maryland have gone to turf.

I doubt the Cubs would like to see their farmhands on a 100% fake field. The MLB teams with turf now have traditional dirt around the infield.

Would CTV be agreeable to lose the brown portions of the carpet?
 
#9

Volfan1000

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#9
Maybe the SEC Tournament could be played occasionally at the proposed new ball park.

I think it would be very financially responsible for Tennessee and the Smokies to share that new ball park and it could also help CTV and his staff with future recruiting classes.
 
#10

@1RBFjr

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#10
True to a point, but the current boom in off campus student apartments means most athletes past their freshman year live off campus anyway. They still eat at the Stokely dining hall and such. Just drive or bus back to apartment when done.

It will be interesting to see if some of the residences coming around the development will specialize in students. Would that not have been a blast as a student to live in apartment at baseball stadium and Old City!?!?

I think sharing a stadium makes so much financial sense for the time being, especially in current financial straits brought only shutdowns. Now that beer is allowed, that makes the logistics even easier.

The city, the local businesses and Boyd (whose family owns many of the nearby buildings and businesses in Old City) would love to see events at the stadium starting in February like college baseball.

The college and AA seasons would only overlap about 6 weeks (8 weeks if you count regional play). And that would be quite easy to work around. Ushers, concessions and others would have more consistent work under those circumstances. UT could also negotiate more money from parking charges. More concession money. More beer money. More parking money. More consistent attendance with more casual fans. More suite money. Easier access for fans with more parking. No shared parking with basketball and other arena events. Better facilities like lighting. No cost to build a AA class stadium. Higher visibility to the general public.
Does UT want to give up total control of its facilities? Work with and around another team’s schedule?
Also the best crowds (and revenue) are Friday and Saturday games. The last part of the college season (which overlaps with a full season MiLB team) has SEC teams in town for weekend series. Something would have to give.
 
#11

BruinVol

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#11
A combination schedule would make some sense. Having the turf as a practice facility and a back up for weather issues on the new natural surface facility.

What can’t happen is allowing the school to take over that space where LNS is now.

I’d suggest 8-10 games a year at the new place

Jmo
 
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#13

@1RBFjr

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#13
A combination schedule would make some sense. Having the turf as a practice facility and a back up for weather issues on the new natural surface facility.

What can’t happen is allowing the school to take over that space where LNS is now.

I’d suggest 8-10 games a year at the new place

Jmo
Maybe when a big opponent comes to town and more tickets can be sold than LNS capacity.
 
#14

fryeguy93

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#14
With all the shifts going on with MiLB, I am not sure the University should leave where they are. The Smokies got kept, but who knows what the future holds.

I believe AA & AAA are safe. As well as half of A ball.
The MLB teams are seemingly moving to have rookie league and low-A train and play at their spring training facilities with more consistent facilities; less travel and better assistance to foreign borne players.

There are some crappy AA cities (I’m looking at you Jackson, TN) but there will be plenty of cities who would gladly fill that role.
 
#15

@1RBFjr

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#15
I believe AA & AAA are safe. As well as half of A ball.
The MLB teams are seemingly moving to have rookie league and low-A train and play at their spring training facilities with more consistent facilities; less travel and better assistance to foreign borne players.

There are some crappy AA cities (I’m looking at you Jackson, TN) but there will be plenty of cities who would gladly fill that role.
Jackson no longer is affiliated.
 
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#18

Bigun

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#18
May have missed it itt, but any chance they reconfigure LNS to make it something other than what looks like where I played Little League and Babe Ruth? Doesn't seem like it would be that much trouble to switch home plate and outfield so the batters aren't staring into the sun for most games and also add some sky boxes. UNC's facility is really nice and looks like something similar could be done here.

 
#19

@1RBFjr

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#19
May have missed it itt, but any chance they reconfigure LNS to make it something other than what looks like where I played Little League and Babe Ruth? Doesn't seem like it would be that much trouble to switch home plate and outfield so the batters aren't staring into the sun for most games and also add some sky boxes. UNC's facility is really nice and looks like something similar could be done here.

Flip flopping home and center was actually announced a few head coaches ago. It’s been awhile, but was nixed and LNS was improved at that time.
 

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