Oct. 3, 2002
What is one of the most frequently asked questions in Bowling Green? You guessed correctly if you thought, "Will Western play basketball in Diddle Arena THIS year?"
The answer to this often-asked question remains the same. Yes, Western WILL play basketball in Diddle Arena, beginning with the men's and women's doubleheader on Saturday, November 9th. Literally, our hard hats are off to Alliance Corporation and the more than 250 construction workers engaged daily to meet a very aggressive renovation timeline for Diddle Arena.
Allow me to update you on what you might expect to find as you return to Diddle in about a month. First, I will list all project components that will be complete by November 9:
- Sixteen sold out luxury suites
- Air Conditioning
- Two jumbo videoboards and scoreboards
- Expanded and improved restrooms
- Three ground floor ticket entrances and box office locations
- One elevator with access to all levels
As we have stated all along, Diddle will be a work in progress throughout the season. As such, it will very much be a construction site during the season. We respectfully ask for your patience as we restore the glory to Diddle Arena. We will make every effort to minimize any potential disruptions as you visit Diddle each game night. It will be interesting to witness this dramatic transformation unfold each time you visit Diddle Arena. Areas that should be finished during the month of December include:
- Concession stands and food courts
- Additional elevator access
- One additional ground floor ticket entrance and box office location
As the season continues, you will witness progress and new amenities every time you return to Diddle Arena. In preparation for the combined men's and women's Sun Belt Conference Tournament, which begins March 6, 2003, we expect the following areas to be completed at various times throughout the 2002-03 regular season:
- Additional lighting
- Additional sound system components
- Practice gymnasium with two basketball courts
- Weight room and training room
- Men's and women's basketball office suites and locker rooms
- Exterior brickwork
- Four operational elevators inside the arena
- Academic advising center
- Coaches and administrative offices
After the season, we will conduct phase two of the renovation project. These items will be completed over the summer of 2003 in anticipation of a grand opening of Diddle in the fall of 2003:
- New playing floor
- New chairback seats
- Hall of Champions
- Branded and themed entrance points at each of the four ticket entry areas
Our goal has always been to create one of the finest on-campus athletic venues in the country and the nicest multi-purpose facility in the Commonwealth of Kentucky. To accomplish this goal, we must have a facility that enhances spectator enjoyment of any event held in Diddle. With the considerable concern for detail, expanded restrooms, expanded concessions, food courts, branded food concepts, luxury suites, videoboards, air conditioning, multiple elevator access points, expanded handicap accessible seating sections and locations, and revamped lighting and sound systems, we will have a facility for the ages.
We thank you for your patience. Our coaches and student-athletes want a finished product as much as each of you. I look forward to seeing you this season in Diddle Arena and welcome any comments or suggestions on ways to make your visits more enjoyable and entertaining. Thank you for your continued support of Hilltopper athletics. It is a great time to be a Topper!
Dr. Camden Wood Selig
Director of Athletics