As the game clock ticks down to 1 p.m. Sept. 18 — the inaugural game at Robins Stadium for the University of Richmond Spiders football game against Elon University — athletic department officials are ticking off their checklists when it comes to game day information and preparation.
But before the team takes the field, stadium officials want students, faculty, staff and members of the community to be informed about the procedures regarding Spider football coming home, back on campus for the first time since the university adopted City Stadium, at the corner of McCloy Street and Maplewood Ave., more than 80 years ago.
RobinsStadium.com launched today as a one-stop source of information for all Robins Stadium patrons. On the website, viewers can look at full-color printable maps, information on parking, tailgating, tickets and preferred driving directions, and a complete list of the stadium's policies and procedures. Tabs designated for visitors, students and community members focus on the information directed at these groups.
Additionally, the website includes pages directed at soliciting feedback from the community members. Campus and neighborhood communities are able to provide comments through a feedback form, a stadium e-mail address and/or a Good Neighbor Help Line.
The 8,700-seat stadium project construction began in December 2008 and has since bulldozed its way to be on-schedule and under budget, Andrew McBride, university architect said.
Not only is the project on-schedule and under budget, the university's commitment to sustainability has not been overlooked.
"Robins Stadium was designed and built using the U.S. Green Building Council's LEED (Leadership in Energy & Environmental Design) rating standards with a goal of earning their Silver Rating," McBride said.
The stadium features no irrigation system and a reduction of water usage by 30 percent, optimizing energy performance over baseline by 14 percent and at least 20 percent of all materials used in the constructer were extracted, processed and manufactured within 500 miles of the building site. A full list of the implementations on the Robins Stadium project can be found on the website.
"It's a great facility, though it is not the largest but I would be hard-pressed to find one that challenged its beauty," athletic director Jim Miller said of the facility,
Miller also said he was, "anxious for a few finishing touches to be put on this great facility and we're looking forward to open with Elon and the host our other CAA (Colonial Athletic Association) games after."
Students and fans alike should be happy to hear that the website, RobinsStadium.com, has a whole wealth of information about tailgating.
"It's a great opportunity to be back on campus and tailgating should be the best it has ever been," Miller said.
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Though there is only an allotted amount of 1,600 student tickets for a school with a student body of close to 2,900 undergraduates, both Miller and Jana Ross, assistant director of athletics, marketing & fan development, said that the stadium is "in good shape for the students."
Ross said that the university will be holding an additional 1,000 tickets for students for the first home game on Sept. 18.
"Our stadium will have the highest amount of student seating per enrollment," Ross said.
Miller said he did not know the final cost of the stadium, but he said that the athletic department had raised $20 million with an additional $5 million coming from the university.
First-year football coach Latrell Scott said he is excited to coach the first team to play at Robins Stadium.
"We're ready to bring Spider football home for a true home game," he said.
Not only will the on-campus stadium enhance the game-day atmosphere, but it will also help with recruiting future players.
"When we recruited before, we kind of hid City Stadium because facilities are an important part of recruiting," Scott said. "Now we are proud to show off our great facilities."
The stadium, E. Claiborne Robins Stadium, is named in honor of the decades of generous support that the Robins Family and the Robins Foundation have provided to the university, including athletics and the new stadium project.
E. Claiborne Robins, Jr. said in a statement, "He (E. Claiborne Robins, Sr.) would have been a huge supporter for bringing Spider football back home, so it is a fitting tribute and very meaningful to our family to have the University of Richmond stadium bears his name."
Though the history of City Stadium remains in the record books, newspaper articles, photographs and videos, the memories still remain.
"Richmond football won a lot of games in City Stadium," Miller said. "It served its purpose. We are looking forward to see what the future, and we are sure it will provide even greater memories and opportunities for our fans, coaches and players."
Contact staff writer Amelia Vogler at email@example.com
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