WSU's big new scoreboard goes up in August

IT WON'T BE AS BIG as the "Godzillatron" that the Longhorns boast down in Austin, but Washington State's state-of-the-art new scoreboard that is scheduled to go up in Martin Stadium this August is still a monster. It is believed to be more than five stories wide, with the video portion of the board roughly twice the size of Martin's existing screen.

WSU is expected to announce this month that the contract has been signed to deliver a $2.4 million board that is thought to stand approximately 40-feet tall and 52-feet-wide. The video portion of the board is expected to measure 25 x 52.

Official specifications could not be obtained. WSU declined to comment for this story and calls to Daktronics Inc., the South Dakota-based company believed to be manufacturing the scoreboard, went unreturned.

Based on data compiled before the start of the 2006 season, the video portion of the new board would –- if the 25 x 52 dimensions are accurate -– rank among the largest in the college ranks, at roughly 1,300 square-feet. Still, it would be a dwarf compared to the $8 million, 55 x 134, 7,370-square-foot "Godzillatron" at Texas' Royal-Memorial Stadium.

WSU's old scoreboard has been around since the Dark Ages. The video portion was installed in 1991 and the clock-quarter-down portion went up as part of the 1979 stadium expansion.

The new board is part of WSU's three-phase upgrade and expansion of the stadium.

In addition to the video and informational benefits it will bring to fans, the board will allow WSU to sell significantly more in-stadium advertising via rotating placements.

THE FIRST TWO PHASES of the Martin Stadium renovation will be finished before football season starts in the fall. Phase III is moving forward with a final design expected to be decided upon any day now and fundraising set to begin in earnest. The third phase, estimated to cost about $40 million, will add 2,200 premium seats (luxury suites, loge boxes and club seats) on the north side of the stadium.

Those seats, all by themselves, will generate about $3.7 million in revenue per year. That's almost equal to what the entire 35,117-seat stadium currently generates per season.

To support the stadium renovation effort, call the WSU Athletic Foundation office at 1-877-IMA-COUG or 509-335-0220 or via email at

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