Sep. 26, 2000
MIAMI, FL -
Florida Atlantic University football now has a place to call home next season. The University, Tuesday, unveiled an agreement with Pro Player Stadium in which all FAU home games will be played at the Miami facility beginning with FAU's inaugural season in 2001. The deal allows for FAU to play at Pro Player Stadium for a minimum of three years.
"Pro Player Stadium affords us the opportunity to move into a top-of-the-line stadium, which will give us a major advantage in scheduling," said FAU head coach Howard Schnellenberger. "It will give our potential players the opportunity to fulfill a lifelong dream of playing in one of football's finest venues. This deal also will provide our fans a fantastic and comfortable stadium."
Pro Player Stadium is home of the National Football League's Miami Dolphins and the Florida Marlins of Major League Baseball. The facility also plays host to the NCAA Fed-Ex Orange Bowl and the MicronPC.com Bowl.
"Coach Schnellenberger came to FAU with grand plans to make the Fighting Owls a national contender within a few years, and it only makes sense to play our games in the best possible facility in South Florida," said FAU President Anthony James Catanese.
Catanese and then Director of Football Operations Schnellenberger received initial approval from the Florida Board of Regents to develop a football program in March 1999. Schnellenberger was named Head Coach in the summer of 1999.
"Pro Player Stadium is excited about hosting the FAU Fighting Owls and being a part of their history," said Pro Player President M. Bruce Schulze. "With the combination of FAU's top-rate Head Coach, Schnellenberger, and our first class facility, this football program is surely on the pathway to success."
Capacity at the stadium for FAU's home games will be 41,000 with seating available in the lower level and Club Level including Luxury Suites. FAU, in conjunction with the Pro Player Stadium box office and TicketMaster, will handle all individual game ticket sales.
Last Saturday, FAU played the first of 10 scrimmages to be held this fall at FAU's new practice fields at the Tom Oxley Athletic Center. The Owls will begin intercollegiate play in September 2001 as a NCAA Division I-AA team. Next year's schedule will be released at a later date.