USF official promises on-campus football stadium will be built

As USF football boosters, administrators and players gathered for the groundbreaking ceremony of "a long-awaited indoor practice facility," Board of Trustees Chair Will Weatherford announced his vision for the Bulls’ next step: "An on-campus football stadium," according to Matt Baker of the TAMPA BAY TIMES. Weatherford said, “I’m here to tell you we’re going to do it." Weatherford said that the stadium would "be somewhere on the main campus, south of Fletcher Avenue." Neither Weatherford nor AD Michael Kelly were "ready to talk about a timeline," and financial details were "not discussed." After "years of discussion and inaction," USF looked at potential sites with a '17 study and released "the findings of a feasibility survey the next year." If something is "going to materialize," it will "be because of Weatherford." The former speaker of Florida’s House of Representatives has "prioritized a stadium since being selected as chair in June." USF football coach Jeff Scott called it a "'bold statement' for Weatherford to take his vision public" and believes the chair would not "have done it without a firm plan." Baker writes the timing "could be right, too" because of "conference realignment." USF, notably, was "left behind," but an on-campus stadium would "make them more attractive for the next round of realignment, whenever that is." Weatherford said, “Frankly, this community and the students and the athletes, they deserve a stadium on their campus. They deserve to have it, and we can do it. And we’re going to do it" (TAMPA BAY TIMES, 9/9).

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