New track, new opportunities says Beckwith

Jason Reed, Sports Editor

Bakersfield College athletic director Ryan Beckwith provided details about a new plan for an upgrade on the track and artificial grass for the football field in Memorial Stadium.

“You go down the list of schools, and there are a lot of them that have these fields now,” he said. “And so that’s where we’re going because it allows us kind of a multipurpose situation, where not only our football team will be able to play in it, but we can host a high school football game the night before and not have to worry about the grass being torn up.”

Beckwith believes that this will give the school more opportunities to bring events to Memorial Stadium. Beckwith said that the school is going after the same type of track as schools such as Oregon, Stanford, USC and UC Berkeley. Beckwith said that BC is trying to put out an ad campaign to raise at least $2 million.

“It’s going to be an entire campus campaign, where it’s not just athletics involved,” he said. “The president is very, very supportive of this and getting this done.”
Beckwith believes that if the school is able to have enough events in the venue, the moneywould be huge for the campus.

“This has been something that has been on a lot of people’s minds for a few years now,” Beckwith said when asked how long the idea of a new track and football field has come up.

“I’ve been working on just getting all the research done, making sure we get the right surface, getting everything that we can packaged correctly before we start any type of fundraising campaign.”
Beckwith said that they’d like to get the project done as fast as they can. He said that the better facility the school has would mean better events.

“Sporting events, professional, college, concerts, I mean really it allows us versatility to do a lot of things in there because we don’t have to worry about ruining the grass anymore,” Beckwith said when asked about renting out the stadium for special events.