OU softball: Wait continues for new stadium
NORMAN — Oklahoma softball will host its final regular season home game Saturday night at Marita Hynes Field. With 22 seasons at the current facility almost complete, the wait continues for construction to begin on a new stadium.
“We’re just being patient,” coach Patty Gasso said. “It’s time. It’s needed. If we have 3,000 seats here, and we have a good quality team, I believe that we’re gonna fill these seats.”
Plans for a new $22 million softball facility were approved last June. The future home will be located at the northwest corner of Jenkins Avenue and Imhoff Road — half a mile south of the current stadium.
The new stadium is proposed to seat 3,000 fans, more than doubling the 1,378 capacity of Marita Hynes Field.
“It’s important to remember that we are still in a concept phase relative to the actual design of the stadium,” OU athletic director Joe Castiglione said in a release last June. “What we’re seeing today is at the foundation of our planning and we have the flexibility to make changes provided they fit within the budget.”
The athletic department hasn’t provided a recent progress update. There’s no timeline for the project, as it is being funded entirely by donors and the athletic department.
Tickets for the rest of this season were sold out at the beginning of March.
“There are people who don’t come because they know they can’t get in,” Gasso said. “We’re selling things out way in advance, which is great, but how far could we go with this? How big could this sport grow? How many people would come out? I’m anxious to see that. So we’re patiently awaiting the opportunity to break ground some day in the future.”
Big 12 softball stadiums (by capacity)
Cyclone Sports Complex
Marita Hynes Field
Red & Charline McCombs Field
Rocky Johnson Field