Could U of O lose one of its most historic structures?
The Oregon Daily Emerald ran a story today about the possibility of a new indoor track at the University of Oregon.
The idea came after athletic director Pat Kilkenny and track coach Vin Lananna visited Texas A&M’s fancy new indoor digs. They came back jealous. The track could replace historic Hayward Field, one of the hallowed sites in track & field, and home track to Steve Prefontaine.
I can understand the desire for an indoor field ( it is Oregon after all) but I found the story startling. The new Knight Arena will push the venerable McArthur Court into disuse and surplus; could a new indoor track facility do the same to the “Carnegie Hall of Track & Field?” The prospect especially frustrating considering Hayward Field just underwent an $8-million renovation ahead of the U.S. Olympic Trials.
The article says the plans are “hypothetical at best” so at least there is time for ample discussion. It would certainly be sad for both of Oregon’s historic venues to be pushed to the margins of campus life.
What do you think: