The new Ed and Rae Schollmaier Arena opened Tuesday for a dedication featuring a ribbon cutting and the opportunity for alumni and visitors to explore the $72 million renovation.
Chancellor Victor Boschini opened the dedication and thanked the hundreds of donors present for their contributions.
The dedication featured guests such as members of the Fort Worth city council, Mayor Betsy Price, cheerleaders, showgirls, Superfrog and many TCU alumni, fans and donors.
Ed Schollmaier spoke to the crowd about his and his wife Rae’s love of basketball and athletics. Mrs. Schollmaier died in October at the age of 81.
He brought up how he and his wife met their freshman year of college at the University of Cincinnati and how basketball always played an important role in their marriage.
Schollmaier said everything about the new arena was enhanced and state-of-the-art. He kept the audience laughing with his humor and interesting stories about his past.
The chairman to the TCU Board of Trustees, Clarence Scharbauer III, said he was amazed by the transformation of the arena.
“I would say this is the finest facility in basketball today,” Scharbauer said.
Chris Del Conte, the director of intercollegiate athletics, said the arena wouldn’t have been possible without Boschini’s constant vision.
“TCU starts and ends with his vision: the things he takes on and the ideas he has for our school,” Del Conte said.
Boschini said this arena was all for the athletes and to improve the athletic experience overall.
TCU women’s basketball player Zahna Medley said the facility was more than just a place to play games.
“This arena represents more than just a place to play basketball,” Medley said. “It represents goals for our championships. It is the start of a new era for TCU.”
The head coaches of men and women’s basketball also spoke about the improvement of the arena.
The dedication ended with a ribbon cutting by many donors, athletic directors, the mayor, TCU student body president Maddie Reddick and basketball players.
Fall graduation will be held Saturday as the first major event in the new arena. The opening was originally delayed due to weather.
The $72 million renovation features a new Jane Justin Hall of Fame, courtside seating, new concessions stands, larger locker rooms and a new student section.
“The new arena is truly a wonderful new hub for TCU Athletics,” Scharbauer said.
As Del Conte said, “At the end of the day, TCU will last forever.”