Wednesday, February 15, 2006

KU pleased with Hall of Athletics’ early returns


Kansas University's athletic department has declared the Booth Family Hall of Athletics an early success -- though it's still only a month old and 95 percent complete.

Associate athletic director Sean Lester said Tuesday during the Kansas Athletics, Inc., board meeting that turnouts were good at the new KU history haven, located on the east side of Allen Fieldhouse.

Not only have fans been pleased with the displays, but the outpouring of boosters willing to donate their own artifacts has been surprising, too.

"We've adopted a policy that we won't buy anything," Lester said. "We're just accepting donations and loans for the time being."

That's because the high demand of KU fans wanting their memorabilia displayed made the supply too high to warrant spending money.

KU will continue considering donations from anyone who's willing to give or loan their possessions -- though associate athletic director Jim Marchiony stresses that not everything will fit with KU's plans for the Hall.

"We're looking at every offer we get and are very honest with people," Marchiony said. "People have been very good. They understand."

Kansas City, Mo.-based architecture firm HNTB is in the "programming" stages of the facility, a $31 million complex to be built next to Memorial Stadium that was announced earlier this month. That means interviews with several key members involved in the project, including KU coach Mark Mangino. The programming stage will wrap up Thursday after an interview with athletic director Lew Perkins.

On a related note, the naming of the facility is on the agenda for the Kansas Board of Regents meeting Thursday.

  • Budget sturdy: It also was reported Tuesday that KU had reached 88 percent of its budgeted revenue with several months still remaining in the fiscal year. To contrast, just 74 percent of expenses have been exhausted.

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