McNeese Breaks Ground for new Cowboy Stadium Press Box

Published: Jun. 29, 2023 at 10:41 PM CDT
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Lake Charles, LA (KPLC) - Thursday morning was a big one for McNeese State University as they officially broke ground for the new Cowboy Stadium Press Box after the original press box was destroyed by Hurricane Laura in 2020.

The groundbreaking ceremony included several members of the McNeese Athletic Department, McNeese State University President Dr. Daryl Burckel, and more. Following the ceremony, Dr. Burckel, Heath Schroyer, and others spoke to the media about what the new press box will mean for McNeese.

“It’s showing that we’re having consistent progress, it’s not as fast as we would have liked to have seen it, and I don’t think anything does work like that when you have storms, but we’re making progress,” said Dr. Burckel. “We believe this is kind of a beacon of hope because this is a very prominent structure in our community, that people identify as they ride by McNeese and they see that press box, they recognize that this is Cowboy Stadium, and it’s an iconic piece on our campus.”

“The revenue and the excitement that this press box will deliver to this university, and this athletic department, people haven’t seen before,” said Director of Athletics Heath Schroyer. “It is going to be state of the art as you can see, and it will rival any press box anywhere.”

Not only will the press box mean a lot for McNeese State University as a whole, but as Heath Schroyer, and McNeese football head coach Gary Goff explain, it will also directly translate to on-field success.

“Our goal is to be a national contender, and to win a National Championship, and you’ve got to have these things, and if you look at the North Dakota States, the Montana States, of the FCS right now, and they’ve got this stuff,” said Goff. “I think Lake Charles is a special place, a lot better city than most are ever at, so to add this facility on our campus, in Lake Charles, is a big, big move in the right direction for us.”

“I think it’s a game changer, I think when student-athletes come here and they see our press box, and they see our commitment to football, and our commitment to athletics, it’s a game changer,” said Schroyer. “I don’t think there’s any young man that’s going to come visit us that is going to look at us and think man, we’re not committed, and we’re already recruiting a little bit above our level, and I think this will obviously enhance that.”

The press box, which is a $31 million project, and includes 25 suites, a 1,700-square-foot sky club, and an open patio-type area, is part of a major overhaul of renovation on the McNeese State University campus.