OU Regents Approve New Scoreboard Projects

Thursday, March 29th 2007, 2:49 pm

By: News On 6

OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) -- Call it scoreboard envy.

University of Oklahoma Regents approved about $10 million for new scoreboards Thursday less than a year after the Sooners' Big 12 rivals, Texas and Texas A&M, spent millions on new electronic displays, including the Longhorns' massive "Godzillatron."

South Dakota-based Daktronics, Inc., the same company that put together Texas' new scoreboard, was selected for the Oklahoma project.

New scoreboards, video displays and sound systems will be constructed at Memorial Stadium and Lloyd Noble Center. OU Athletics Director Joe Castiglione said sponsorship revenue will pay for the new equipment.

"We are making upgrades that will greatly enhance the fan experience at our two most visible venues," Castiglione said in a statement. "In the end, a trip to an OU game will be more complete and more exciting in many ways."

The first phase of the project at the football stadium, which will be installed before the start of the 2007 season, includes a new video replay board in the north end zone. The second phase features a new four-sided video scoreboard, video displays and sound system at the Lloyd Noble Center in time for the 2007-2008 basketball season.

The final phase of the project, scheduled for completion before the 2008 football season, will include the replacement of the current 21-by-36-foot video scoreboard in the stadium's south end zone with a mammoth 32-by-113-foot display capable of high-definition video replay.

"OU fans will absolutely love the size and clarity of the new football scoreboard," said Jay Parker, national sales manager for Daktronics. "It will be one of the largest in collegiate sports."

OU's scoreboard won't be as large as the University of Texas' aptly named Godzillatron, which towers over the stadium's south end zone at 55 feet tall and 134 feet wide, but will be similar in size to new boards at Nebraska and Arkansas.

Meanwhile, at Oklahoma State University, stadium renovations are continuing at Boone Pickens Stadium, but tentative plans do call for new video scoreboards once the project is completed in two years, said OSU spokesman Kevin Clintworth.

The plan is for two 20-by-60-foot video scoreboards in the west end zone and two smaller screens in the east zone, but details haven't been decided, Clintworth said.

"We're still two years away from being finished," he said. "Who knows what kind of technology they'll have by then."

In other action by the OU Board of Regents Thursday, Tom Clark of Tulsa was selected as chairman of the board and Jon R. Stuart, also of Tulsa, was selected as vice chairman. Clark takes over the position held by Paul D. Austin, whose seven-year term on the board ends this month.

Austin will be replaced on the board by Rick Dunning, president and CEO of Oklahoma City-based Indian Exploration Company, LLC, a company he founded at age 27 after attending the OU School of Geology.

OU President David Boren also announced a $2 million gift from the Ethics and Excellence in Journalism Foundation to OU's College of Journalism and a $2 million gift from Inasmuch Foundation to the OU Cancer Institute.

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