University of South Dakota plans for new arena - KTIV News 4 Sioux City IA: News, Weather and Sports

University of South Dakota plans for new arena


What can you get with 20-million dollars?

If you're the University of South Dakota, it'll not only help build a state of the art athletic arena, it'll put you on the map as a D-1 destination.

The home of the Coyotes is now a full-fledged Division One school and they'll soon have the facilities to prove it.

For years, the Dakotadome has been home to almost all athletics at the University of South Dakota. Whether it's football, volleyball, or basketball, the facility has accommodated the crowds. Like many athletes Kelly Stewart dreamed of playing at a D-1 school

Stewart, a sophomore at USD said, "I wanted to play Division One and when I heard South Dakota Division One, they talked about the transition but that just kind of slipped through my mind when I heard Division One."

Now a Coyote guard, she has that opportunity and hopes to play in a new 6-thousand seat arena. Coaches are using plans for the 50 million dollar project that includes a sports medicine building as a recruiting tool.

Matt Houk, USD Women's volleyball coach said, "We hope that a player never chooses us based on facilities but I think facilities can set you apart when you get into recruiting battles with other schools and they like both the schools, that can be something that separates you from someone else.

It brings excitement to the campus.

Jim Abbott, President of University of South Dakota said, "Even students who are not crazy for football or crazy for basketball or volleyball still have a real good appreciation for what it does for the campus and community."

With word this week that Sanford Health pitched in 20 million dollars for the project, the proposal has taken off.

Abbott, "Until these last couple of years with some increases in the number of students at USD and some heightened interest in athletics, this is the first time we've thought we really could accomplish a project of this magnitude."

Linked to the Dakota Dome there will be new training space, offices for coaches, and a Coyote Hall of Fame. It's enough to make most coyotes go crazy.

Stewart, "With the stadium seating and different bleachers and just all the South Dakota stuff so, I'm really excited about it, I think it looks really nice. And I can't wait to see it when it's actually built."

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