The University of Oklahoma has received the biggest single gift toward a women’s program in its history to give the Sooners softball program a new venue that will overhaul the stadium and training facilities.
Love’s Travel Stops has provided the lead and naming gift for the University of Oklahoma’s new softball stadium. The company has pledged $9 million toward the project and will match every other donation up to an additional $3 million as part of project fundraising.
“I can’t put into words how grateful I am and our program is for the generosity of Love’s Travel Stops and the Love family,” said Oklahoma Coach Patty Gasso, who has led the Sooners program for 27 seasons. “They also recognize that for us to maintain the level of excellence we’ve achieved, we must be a national leader in all aspects of our program, including our facility.”
Love’s Field will accommodate seating for 3,000, more than double the current capacity, with three concession stands, eight points of sale and 80 restrooms. Plans also include a 10,500 square-foot indoor training facility, nearly double the size of the current training space.
“Love’s has made a gift of historical proportions for a facility that will be second to none and will impact the lives of our student-athletes for generations to come,” OU Vice President and Athletics Director Joe Castiglione said. “We are proud that their name will be on our new stadium, and we are grateful that the accomplishments of Patty Gasso, her staffs and student-athletes are being celebrated in this way.”
Architects and facility planners are completing design concepts. Groundbreaking will likely occur in 2022 and the stadium will open for the 2024 season. Oklahoma has won five national championships and 20 conference championships including the last nine regular season and last four postseason tournaments.
“As life-long Oklahomans, investing in the community, specifically the University of Oklahoma and its softball program, is something we’re proud to do,” said Jenny Love Meyer, chief culture officer and executive vice president of Love’s. “We are proud to have our name associated with this program and the new stadium that’s so well deserved by the team.”