Pickens Donates $63 Million

Boone Pickens followed through Monday on what he said on national television during the Oklahoma State-Texas football game this past weekend when he announced that he would donate an additional $63 million to his alma mater. The additional monies will be used to complete Boone Pickens Stadium and the west end zone project, OSU athletic director Mike Holder said.

Holder said that the BP Capital hedge fund in which Pickens' $165 million and other monies were invested is now worth $125 million after recent losses in the stock market.

Pickens' fund has not been immune to the global economic downturn and Holder staid during a Monday news conference inside the stadium that the remaining $125 million would be returned to the Oklahoma State athletic department this week.

With the announcement of the additional $63 million donation, the net value of Pickens' gift to Oklahoma State is $188 after the market decline.

"I would like to thank Boone Pickens. I don't know where we'd be without him," Holder said during a Monday news conference announcing Pickens' latest gift.

Holder went on to say that Oklahoma State originally invested $202 million in Pickens' hedge fund. That amount included the original $165 million donation, another $6 million gift from Pickens, and $31 million from the OSU golf program.

Holder said that the fund peaked at $407 million this past July but that it is now worth $125 million.

Holder added that the interior of Boone Pickens Stadium, which includes new offices for the Cowboy football coaching staff and its support staff, is still on track to be completed by the start of the 2009 football season.

"With Boone's support and the continuing involvement of other donors, we are able to continue working toward the completion of our stadium project. It is our number one priority, and we will finish that before moving on to other athletic initiatives, including the indoor practice facility and other aspects of our athletic village," Holder said.

Holder said there is no new timetable for beginning construction on the indoor practice facility but that it would be the number one priority when the football stadium is completed.

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