JACKSON, Miss. (WLBT) - Jackson State is working to get a new stadium and they are getting help from the state to make it happen.
This legislative session, lawmakers allocated a quarter of a million dollars for JSU to study the possibility of getting a new home for the Tigers.
“The study is just the first step. What’s going to be a long but exciting journey toward a new on-campus stadium,” said Dr. Thomas Hudson.
Mississippi Veterans Memorial stadium was built in 1950, and it has been the home stadium for the Jackson State Tigers for decades. The faculty is also exclusively operated and maintained by JSU.
Now, Mississippi state lawmakers have allocated $250,000 for Jackson State leaders to look at what it will take to move from an aging facility to a new state-of-the-art, on-campus stadium.
“This will allow us to look at different sites, land studies and really come up with what we feel will be a really good product for the Jackson State University,” said Hudson.
“This is exciting to be able to do the study and prepare a budget, and look at some architectural drawings, and prepare JSU for something that is well, well, needed,” Vice President & Director of Athletics Ashley Robinson said.
Robinson says two major things he will consider in the study is quality and sustainability.
“You are talking about not putting something together real fast, but a quality stadium when it comes to the playing surface and when it comes to the structure and when it comes to the lockers areas, and Hall of Fame areas￼. The study is basically the steps to put everything together on what we want in our stadium and that is what the study is all about,” Robinson.
Back in 2013, JSU unveiled plans to build a multi-million dollar dome, but that push wasn’t successful and died. Now, with a national spotlight on Jackson State and its new head football coach Deion Sanders, JSU feels good about the future.
“This is historic. This is the first time the state has invested a significant amount of resources into a new facility, a new on campus facility for JSU. I think now in this moment I think part of the excitement around surrounding JSU, JSU football but also the fan base.”
JSU officials say they expect to complete the study by the fall, and begin seeking more funds to build a new stadium.