As we count down the hours in anticipation of the Washington State University vs. USC game Friday night, let’s take a moment to look back three years ago when WSU football players got a first glimpse of their new home.
In 2010, the University had just hired a new athletic director and the program was clearly struggling.
“This just arguably could have been one of the worst, if not the worst, football programs in major college,” WSU athletic director Bill Moos told USA TODAY Sports. “The (WSU) president at the time, Elson Floyd, had my back when I took the job (in 2010) – that we had to invest in facilities, hire and retain the very best coaches and recruit top talent. I convinced the president that we have to invest right now, or we’re going to get left in the dust.”
As architects for the new Cougar Football Complex, ALSC was charged with designing a facility that would improve morale, maximize individual potential, increase fundraising and support recruiting.
Since Washington State opened its five-story, $61M athletic building overlooking the school’s football stadium in 2014, some returns have “started coming in, with record sales in season football tickets (14,400),” according to Brent Schrotenboer of USA TODAY. Investments in football also are “paying off in fundraising for the athletic department.”
In addition, the Cougars’ record has continued to improve, going from 3-9 in 2014 to winning seasons of 9-4 in 2015 and 8-5 in 2016; including appearances in the Sun Bowl (2015) and the Holiday Bowl (2016).
Based on the Cougar’s improving record over the past three years and a 4-0 start this year, the team looks to be on track for another winning season.
It’s hard to imagine that a building could be designed around a motto, but “Honor the past, live the present, create the future” really comes to life in the Cougar Football Complex.