With the university’s baseball program set to begin play in 2020, planning is underway for a new Boise State ballpark.
Boise State announced last year that it would add a baseball program in the future, with plans for the team to begin play in the 2020 season. Gary Van Tol was hired in November as baseball’s head coach, and is now working to build the program.
One of the key areas for Boise State to address will be building a new ballpark. The proposed facility still needs final approval, but the current concept for the ballpark calls for it to be constructed near football’s Albertsons Stadium. It would offer an initial seating capacity of roughly 2,000, while leaving room for future expansion. In one distinct element that would resemble Albertsons Stadium, the ballpark might even feature its own blue turf playing surface. More from the Idaho Statesman:
Boise State intends to build a stadium a block south of Albertsons Stadium, bounded on the south side by Beacon Street. Van Tol and [Boise State Athletic Director Curt] Apsey said it likely will seat approximately 2,000, with the possibility of expanding in hopes of hosting a future NCAA regional. There is no set minimum to host, but most that have hosted have 3,000 or more capacity.
The project needs State Board of Education approval and won’t be on the docket at next week’s meeting. It likely will take about a year to build once approved. There are currently university- and privately-owned buildings on the lot, so aiming to have it ready by spring 2020 is the goal, but a project like that must begin in the coming months.
“We need design, financing, all that to be approved to move forward … but if we want it ready then, we’ve got to get moving on it soon,” Apsey said.
Van Tol said at his introductory news conference that he wants blue turf on the field, and he still hopes to have it. It’s not a decision that is solely his, but he has plenty of support. With the unpredictable spring weather, the turf will be artificial no matter what. Van Tol is even looking at dirt that has an orange tint to really drive home the school’s branding.
Baseball was last offered at the Boise State in 1980, the final season before it was dropped from university’s varsity sports offerings.