Memorial Stadium was built in 1920 funded by students, faculty, and fans. Originally the stadium had only east and west bleachers, which were
expanded southward in 1925. The north bowl seating section was added in 1927 to give the stadium its horseshoe shape which it retains today.
The west bleachers were expanded significantly upwards in 1963, with similar additions to the east side in 1965. A major renovation in 1978
repaired concrete and upgraded home and visiting team facilities.
Permanent lights were installed in 1997 and the current infrastructure is the result of a 1998 renovation. The press box and scholarship suites
saw significant improvement and expansion in 1999, and the MegaVision video board was installed in the same year.
The track which rings the stadium has been resurfaced several times, most recently in 1999.
The field has been artificial turf since 1970. The current AstroPlay surface has been in place since 2000.
A new scoreboard with two video strips was mounted at the top of the stadium's north bowl for the 2005 season, correcting a quirk of the stadium
that north-driving teams had no way to see the clock without turning around. In 2006, the playing field was named Kivisto Field in honor of a
On October 6, 2006 at precisely 11:27am, the University of Kansas broke ground on the new $31-million Anderson Family Football Complex.
Plans for the building include offices, academic areas, a weight room, locker rooms, an audio-visual room, meeting rooms, a cardio room, a
hydro-therapy room, a nutrition area and a display area. The addition is to be joined by new practice fields on the east side of the stadium.
1919 The University of Kansas initiates the Million Dollar Drive, designed as a fund-raising campaign to secure funds for the construction of a
memorial honoring the KU students who died during World War I.
1920 Phog Allen, in his only football season as head coach, rallies his team from a 20-0 halftime deficit to a 20-20 tie against Nebraska. The
following Monday, students and faculty gather to celebrate the come-back and more than $200,000 is pledged over a three-day period to build
a concrete stadium.
1921 The university observed "Stadium Day" (May 10) and more than 4,000 Students show up to help demolish the old stadium, McCook Field.
1921 The first game in Memorial Stadium is Oct. 3, 1921 as KU defeats Kansas State, 21-7 in front of 5,160 fans. When the stadium was
completed, the east and west stands had a capacity of 22,000.
1922 The formal dedication of the stadium came Nov. 11, 1922 just prior to the KU-Nebraska game.
1925 The east and west section were extended to the south. On Oct. 3, 1925, a record crowd of 20,640 watched Kansas defeat Oklahoma
1927 Phog Allen’s dream of a horseshoe-type stadium turns into reality as the north bowl is completed and the stadium capacity is increased
1963 The west stands are expanded 26 rows, raising the capacity to 44,900. Also added is a new pressbox.
1965 The east stands are expanded and capacity grows to 51,500.
1970 The natural grass surface is replaced with artificial turf.
1978 A $1.8 million renovation of Memorial Stadium includes improvements to repair concrete, replacing the original wooden seats, adding
new dressing rooms and additions to the pressbox. Also, a new artificial turf is added.
1987 The old south endzone bleachers are removed.
1990 A new AstroTurf field is installed in the summer prior to the start of the 1990 season.
1992 Permanent bleachers are added in the south end zone.
1997 Construction starts at the conclusion of the 1997 season on the first phase of a two-year $25 million renovation project that includes
structural repairs, infrastructure improvements, upgrades of concessions areas and restrooms. The final phase (scheduled for the 1999
season) will include a new pressbox.
1999 The completion of a two-year, $25 million, renovation project which includes extensive infrastructure repairs, new concourse with
improved concession stands and restrooms, new home locker room, a new pressbox with 36 scholarship suites and expanded facilities for
radio, television and print media and a new elevator. In addition, the 1999 season marks the debut of a new video board in the south end zone.