Sun Devil Stadium

Sun Devil Stadium

Infobox Stadium
stadium_name = Sun Devil Stadium, Frank Kush Field
nickname = The House of Heat

caption = A view of Sun Devil Stadium during its final Fiesta Bowl game
location = 500 E. Veterans Way
Tempe, Arizona, 85281
broke_ground = 1958
opened = 1958
owner = Arizona State University
operator = Arizona State University
surface = Bermuda Grass
construction_cost = $1 million
architect =
former_names = Sun Devil Stadium (1958-96)
tenants = Arizona State Sun Devils (NCAA) (1958-Present)
Fiesta Bowl (NCAA) (1971-2006)
Insight Bowl (NCAA) (2006–)
Arizona Cardinals (NFL) (1988-2005)
Arizona Wranglers (USFL) (1983-1984)
Arizona Outlaws (USFL) (1985)
Super Bowl XXX (1996)
seating_capacity = 73,379 (expandable to 76,000)

Sun Devil Stadium, Frank Kush Field is an outdoor football stadium located on the campus of Arizona State University in Tempe, Arizona. It is home to the Arizona State Sun Devils of the Pacific-10 Conference. It has previously been the home of the NFL's Arizona Cardinals from 1988 to 2005, and was the annual site of the Fiesta Bowl from 1971 to 2006. The stadium's current seating capacity is 73,379 and the playing surface is natural grass.

Construction and upgrades

Built in 1958, the stadium's original capacity was just 30,000. The first addition in 1976 substantially raised the capacity to 57,722. Seating was added to the south end of the stadium, along with press and sky boxes. A year later, in 1977, the upper tier was completed to bring seating to 70,491. In 1988, 1,700 more seats were added to bring the facility to its current capacity. During that time the Carson Student Athlete Center was added to the south end. The building is the home of the ASU Athletic Department.

College football

The first game played at the stadium was on October 4, 1958. Arizona State defeated West Texas State 16-13.

On September 21, 1996, the playing surface was named in honor of former ASU football coaching great Frank Kush, and the name of the stadium was changed from Sun Devil Stadium to Sun Devil Stadium, Frank Kush Field. That night ASU shut-out #1 Nebraska 19-0. The largest crowd ever seated for a college football game at the stadium was 74,963 for an ASU-Cal game won by the Sun Devils, 35-7, on November 9, 1996 to clinch the Pac-10 title and earn a Rose Bowl invitation.

Sun Devil Stadium hosted college football's Fiesta Bowl from 1971 to 2006. ASU continues to use Sun Devil Stadium, which will now host the Insight Bowl, moving from Chase Field, the home field of the Arizona Diamondbacks. The Insight Bowl (formerly called the Copper Bowl in Tucson) moved to Sun Devil Stadium when the Fiesta Bowl moved to the University of Phoenix Stadium in nearby Glendale.

NFL football

The first pro game played in the stadium was a pre-season game between the New York Jets and the Minnesota Vikings in 1975. The Green Bay Packers also played the Denver Broncos in a preseason game in 1987.

The facility became an NFL stadium in 1988, when the St. Louis Cardinals moved west to Arizona and became the Phoenix Cardinals (renamed the Arizona Cardinals in 1994). The Cardinals' first regular season game in the stadium was a 17-14 loss to the Dallas Cowboys in a "Monday Night Football" game on September 12, 1988. The Cardinals won their next home game, defeating the defending Super Bowl champion Washington Redskins 30-21.

The stadium hosted Super Bowl XXX in 1996 as the Cowboys won their fifth Vince Lombardi Trophy, defeating the Pittsburgh Steelers, 27-17 in front of the all-time stadium record of 76,347 spectators.

On October 27, 2003, the "Monday Night Football" game between the San Diego Chargers and Miami Dolphins was moved to Sun Devil Stadium because the Cedar Fire in the San Diego area forced the teams to vacate Qualcomm Stadium, which was being used as an evacuation site. The tickets for the game were free.

The Cardinals ended their tenure on the ASU campus with a 27-21 victory over the Philadelphia Eagles on Christmas Eve 2005. In 18 seasons in Sun Devil Stadium, the Cardinals complied a 64-80 (.444) mark, with their best single-season mark being 5-3 in 1994, 1996, 1998, and 2004.

In 2006, the Cardinals moved from Sun Devil Stadium to University of Phoenix Stadium in another Phoenix suburb, Glendale, located on the opposite side of the metro area from Tempe. The new stadium also hosts the Fiesta Bowl, and hosted the first stand-alone Bowl Championship Series National Championship Game in January 2007.

Film appearances

Sun Devil Stadium has been the setting for several movies over the years. Some of them include Cameron Crowe's 1996 blockbuster film, "Jerry Maguire"; U2's 1988 rockumentary "Rattle and Hum", The Rolling Stones' 1983 concert film "Let's Spend the Night Together", 1976's A Star is Born, with Barbara Streisand and Kris Kristofferson, and the Coen Brothers 1987 film "Raising Arizona". In 2003, the stadium was also featured on the Finale episode of "The Amazing Race 4".

John Paul II visit

Pope John Paul II visited Phoenix on September 14, 1987, as a part of his whirlwind tour of the United States. In Tempe, he held mass for 75,000 at Sun Devil Stadium. All the Sun Devil logos and words with "devil" painted on the stadium's facade had to be covered up for the Pope to agree to enter the stadium.

Needed renovations

In 2007, engineers realized that the concrete base of the stadium was buckling due to the rusting of structural steel supporting the foundation. Stadium designers had neglected to waterproof the structure when it was built, assuming that a stadium in the desert would not need waterproof concrete. However, grounds crews for the college and professional football teams hosed down the turf after every game, introducing substantially more water to the field surface than the designers had envisioned. Engineers now estimate that $45 million in repairs will be needed to maintain the stadium beyond 2010. [cite web
title = Sun Devil Stadium Repairs Planned
publisher = Arizona Republic
date = 2007-06-24
url =
accessdate = 2007-12-30

External links

* [ The Sun] – official athletics site – Sun Devil Stadium, Frank Kush Field
* [ Arizona's S&E News] – Sun Devil Stadium


succession box
title = Home of the
Arizona State Sun Devils
years = 1958 – present
before = Goodwin Stadium
after = Current
succession box
title = Home of the
Tostitos Fiesta Bowl
years = 1971 – 2005
before = none
after = University of Phoenix Stadium
succession box
title = Home of the
Insight Bowl
years = 2006 – present
before = Chase Field
after = Current
succession box
title = Home of the
Arizona Cardinals
years = 1988 – 2005
before = Busch Stadium
after = University of Phoenix Stadium
succession box
title = Host of the Super Bowl
years = XXX 1996
before = Joe Robbie Stadium
after = Louisiana Superdome

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