Stanford Stadium is an outdoor athletic stadium in Stanford, California, on the campus of Stanford University. It is the home of the Stanford Cardinal college football team as well as the site of the university's commencement exercises. It opened in 1921 as a football and track stadium, an earthen horseshoe with wooden bleacher seating and flooring upon a steel frame. Its original seating capacity was 60,000, which grew to 89,000 by 1927 as a nearly enclosed bowl. Immediately following the 2005 season, the stadium was demolished and rebuilt as a dual-deck concrete structure, without a track. Today, it seats 50,424.
View of the stadium before a football game,
Location in California
Location in the United States
|Address||625 Nelson Road|
|Public transit||Stanford (game days only)|
|Broke ground||June 1, 1921|
November 26, 2005
|Opened||October 1, 1921|
September 16, 2006
|Construction cost||US$90 million (2006)|
|Architect||Hoover and Associates|
|General contractor||Vance Brown Builders|
|Stanford Cardinal football (NCAA) (1921–present)|
San Jose Earthquakes (MLS) (2011–present; some games)
Stanford Stadium was built in five months and opened its gates on November 19, 1921, replacing Stanford Field. The first game was against rival California, who defeated Stanford 42–7 in the Big Game. Seating capacity was originally 60,000, with a 66-row, U-Shaped structure second only to the Yale Bowl in size at the time.
In 1925, 10,200 seats were added to the stadium, nearly enclosing the horseshoe while still keeping the overall height of the facility intact. In 1927 14 additional rows of seating were added, increasing the stadium to its maximum capacity of 85,500, with 80 rows of seating. In 1932, the stadium hosted the USA Outdoor Track and Field Championships. In 1935, Stanford Stadium set a record for single-game attendance, with 94,000 spectators filling it for a 13–0 victory over California.
In January 1985, Super Bowl XIX was held in Stanford Stadium, with the Bay Area's own San Francisco 49ers defeating the Miami Dolphins, 38–16. Stanford Stadium is one of two venues (the Rose Bowl being the other) to host a Super Bowl without previously serving as the home stadium of a National Football League (NFL) or American Football League (AFL) team. As of now, Super Bowl XIX is the only Super Bowl where the host region saw its team win.
On October 22, 1989, the San Francisco 49ers played a home game at the stadium against the New England Patriots, due to damage suffered to Candlestick Park following the Loma Prieta earthquake five days earlier.
The stadium has hosted soccer matches for the 1984 Summer Olympics as one of three venues outside southern California for that Olympics, the 1994 FIFA World Cup, and the 1999 FIFA Women's World Cup.
Major League Soccer's San Jose Earthquakes have hosted one match at the stadium each year since 2011. The first year's opponent was the New York Red Bulls; since 2012, the Earthquakes have used the stadium to host their home leg of the California Clásico versus the Los Angeles Galaxy.
|Date||Time (UTC−7)||Team #1||Result||Team #2||Round||Attendance|
|20 June 1994||13:00||Brazil||2–0||Russia||Group B||81,061|
|24 June 1994||13:00||Brazil||3–0||Cameroon||Group B||83,401|
|26 June 1994||13:00||Switzerland||0–2||Colombia||Group A||83,401|
|28 June 1994||13:00||Russia||6–1||Cameroon||Group B||74,914|
|4 July 1994||12:35||Brazil||1–0||United States||Round of 16||84,147|
|10 July 1994||12:35||Romania||2–2 (a.e.t.)
|Date||Time (UTC−7)||Team #1||Result||Team #2||Round||Attendance|
|4 July 1999||13:30||United States||2–0||Brazil||Semi-final||73,123|
|14 Dec 1996||1998 FIFA World Cup Qualifying (CONCACAF)||United States||2–1||Costa Rica||40,527|
|16 Mar 1997||United States||3–0||Canada||28,898|
Other high-profile events hosted at Stanford Stadium include Herbert Hoover's acceptance speech for the 1928 Republican Presidential nomination and the 1962 edition of the long-running (1958–1985) series of track meets between the United States and the Soviet Union.
The stadium has gone a number of significant renovations since the 1920s. In 1960, a press box was added, while the first, and last synthetic athletics track was installed in 1978 (replacing the cinder track that had been used for many years).
In 1985, prior to Super Bowl XIX, the press box was renovated, new locker rooms were installed, a ticket complex and dressing room for game officials were added, and the number of restrooms were increased.
In 1994, prior to the 1994 FIFA World Cup, the lower level of the press box was expanded and aluminum benches were installed throughout the stadium. The crown of the playing surface was also reduced.
In 1995, a $10 million gift from Los Angeles insurance executive and 1935 Stanford graduate Louis W. Foster enabled further updates to the stadium, including widening the concourse, improving the restrooms, and replacing the remaining wooden seats. In honor of his gift, Stanford named the playing surface the Louis W. Foster Family Field at Stanford Stadium.
In June 2005, the university Board of Trustees authorized plans for the stadium's demolition and reconstruction that would remove the track, reduce the stadium capacity, and bring it up to date with present standards for sporting venues. Various justifications for the renovation included poor sightlines in the existing stadium (rendering the bottom 14 rows unusable), long stairways, and lack of adequate restroom facilities. The track around the stadium had previously created a large distance between the field and the spectators.
The capacity of the new stadium was set to be approximately 50,000 seats made by Ducharme Seating. The reduction in capacity was a strategic decision by Stanford's Athletics Program to boost season ticket sales and create a more intimate playing atmosphere without sacrificing the ability to host large world-class events, such as the FIFA World Cup in the future. This was partially the result of San Francisco's failure to secure a bid for the 2012 Olympics, which would have featured a renovated Stanford Stadium as the main Olympic Venue.
Construction began minutes after the Cardinal's last home game of the 2005 football season, a 38–31 loss to Notre Dame on November 26. Bulldozers began tearing out the natural field turf in a ceremony held while attendees were still in the stadium for the game. Construction proceeded quickly through the winter and spring with the goal of opening in time for Stanford's game against San Jose State on September 9, 2006, but the game had to be relocated to San Jose State's Spartan Stadium due to an unusually wet winter and resulting construction delays. In the summer of 2006, a construction worker fell 23 feet (7.0 m) to his death.
The stadium opened on September 16, 2006 with Stanford losing to Navy 37–9. The Stanford Band was not present at the stadium opening since they were not permitted to play at any athletic events in the month of September due to accusations of vandalism to a temporary trailer which formerly served as their rehearsal facility. Instead, the Navy band performed at halftime and played throughout the game.
The facility occupies 18.4 acres (74,000 m2), with a footprint of 601,128 sq ft (55,847 m2)., a playing surface 29 feet (8.8 m) below ground level, and is now a rectangle shape stadium. The stadium has 43 rows on the sides, 22 rows on the endzones, and 30 rows below the skybox. The skybox also has 437 spectator seats, more than double the number of the previous press box.
In 2013, Stanford upgraded their scoreboards with twin high-definition video boards. Also, a 1,673-foot ribbon board was added, which displays out-of-town scores and real-time statistics.
| Host of Super Bowl
| Host of the College Cup
The 1921 Stanford football team represented Stanford University in the 1921 college football season. They were coached by Eugene Van Gent in his only season as head coach. The team played most of its home games at the 15,000-seat Stanford Field while construction on the new 60,000-seat Stanford Stadium was being completed. Stanford Stadium officially opened for the final game, the Big Game against California, in which the Bears defeated Stanford 42–7.1922 Stanford football team
The 1922 Stanford football team represented Stanford University in the 1922 college football season. They were coached by Andy Kerr in his first season as head coach. For the first time, the team played all its home games at Stanford Stadium, the construction of which had been completed at the end of the previous season. With construction of California Memorial Stadium beginning, Stanford hosted the Big Game for the second straight year, the only time the game was played in successive seasons at Stanford Stadium.1926 Stanford football team
The 1926 Stanford football team represented Stanford University in the 1926 college football season. In head coach Pop Warner's third season, Stanford went undefeated in the regular season. Stanford faced undefeated Alabama in the 1927 Rose Bowl for the national championship, but the two teams would tie 7–7. The 1927 Stanford-Alabama match was the final Rose Bowl to end in a tie. Stanford was named the national champion under the Dickinson System and as a co-national champion by the Helms Athletic Foundation, National Championship Foundation, and Jeff Sagarin (using the ELO-Chess methodology).The team played their home games at Stanford Stadium in Stanford, California, and competed in the Pacific Coast Conference.1927 Stanford football team
The 1927 Stanford football team represented Stanford University in the 1927 college football season. In head coach Pop Warner's fourth season, Stanford was undefeated in the Pacific Coast Conference, with a tie in the game against USC. With a three-way tie for the conference championship, Stanford was chosen to represent the conference in the 1928 Rose Bowl against Pittsburgh, with Stanford winning its first Rose Bowl in its fourth attempt, 7–6.
The team played its home games at Stanford Stadium in Stanford, California and competed in the Pacific Coast Conference.1928 Stanford football team
The 1928 Stanford football team represented Stanford University in the 1928 college football season.
Under fifth-year head coach Pop Warner, Stanford played its home games on campus at Stanford Stadium and were members of the Pacific Coast Conference.
After playing in the Rose Bowl for the last two seasons, and three of the last four, Stanford did not play a postseason game, but did end its season on a high note with a shutout over Army before 86,000 at Yankee Stadium.1929 Stanford football team
The 1929 Stanford football team represented Stanford University in the 1929 college football season. In head coach Pop Warner's sixth season, Stanford finished second in the Pacific Coast Conference, losing just one conference game to eventual champion USC. The team played its home games at Stanford Stadium in Stanford, California.1930 Stanford football team
The 1930 Stanford football team represented Stanford University in the 1930 college football season. Their head coach was Pop Warner in his seventh season. Stanford played its home games at Stanford Stadium in Stanford, California.On November 25, shortly before the team's final game against Dartmouth, a unanimous vote of the Executive Committee for the Associated Students chose "Indians" as the official mascot of Stanford's sports teams. "Indians" had been in use informally, but the vote formalized the use over "Cards" and "Cardinals", which were considered "not symbolical of Stanford spirit as that of 'Indians.'"1931 Stanford Indians football team
The 1931 Stanford football team represented Stanford University in the 1931 college football season. Their head coach was Pop Warner in his eighth season. The team played its home games at Stanford Stadium in Stanford, California. This was the first year the team was officially known as the "Indians." The team had been referred to by that nickname for some time, but the mascot was officially adopted by a unanimous vote by the Executive Committee for the Associated Students at the end of the previous football season.Stanford's end-of-season game against Dartmouth at Harvard Stadium remains the only time the team played in that stadium; a planned game at Harvard in 1950 was canceled.1938 Stanford Indians football team
The 1938 Stanford Indians football team represented Stanford University in the 1938 college football season. The team was coached by Tiny Thornhill in his sixth season at Stanford and played their home games at Stanford Stadium in Stanford, California.1946 Stanford Indians football team
The 1946 Stanford Indians football team represented Stanford University in the 1946 college football season. This was the team's first season since 1942 because the team suspended play due to World War II. Stanford's head coach was Marchmont Schwartz, who had coached the 1942 team as well. The team was a member of the Pacific Coast Conference and played its home games at Stanford Stadium in Stanford, California.1948 Stanford Indians football team
The 1948 Stanford Indians football team represented Stanford University in the 1948 college football season. Stanford was led by fourth-year head coach Marchmont Schwartz. The team was a member of the Pacific Coast Conference and played its home games at Stanford Stadium in Stanford, California.1951 Stanford Indians football team
The 1951 Stanford Indians football team represented Stanford University in the 1951 college football season. Stanford was led by first-year head coach Chuck Taylor. The team was a member of the Pacific Coast Conference and played their home games at Stanford Stadium in Stanford, California.1954 Stanford Indians football team
The 1954 Stanford Indians football team represented Stanford University in the 1954 college football season. The team was led by Chuck Taylor in his fourth year. The team played their home games at Stanford Stadium in Stanford, California.Stanford's loss to San Jose State was the team's first-ever loss in the rivalry series that began in 1900. The team's 72–0 loss to UCLA remains Stanford's largest-ever margin of defeat.1959 Stanford Indians football team
The 1959 Stanford Indians football team represented Stanford University in the 1959 NCAA football season. The team was led by Jack Curtice in his second year. The team played their home games at Stanford Stadium in Stanford, California.1961 Stanford Indians football team
The 1961 Stanford Indians football team represented Stanford University in the 1961 NCAA football season. The team was led by Jack Curtice in his fourth year. The team played their home games at Stanford Stadium in Stanford, California.1983 Stanford Cardinal football team
The 1983 Stanford Cardinal football team represented Stanford University in the 1983 NCAA Division I-A football season. In head coach Paul Wiggins's fourth and final season at Stanford, the Cardinal won only one game, ending the season with a 1–10 record, the school's worst since a winless 1960 season. Wiggin was fired on November 11, 1983, but was allowed to coach the two remaining games of Stanford's season.The team played their home games at Stanford Stadium in Stanford, California and competed in the Pacific-10 Conference.1997 Stanford Cardinal football team
The 1997 Stanford Cardinal football team represented Stanford University in the 1997 NCAA Division I-A football season. They were led by head coach Tyrone Willingham. The Cardinal participated as members of the Pacific-10 Conference and played their home games at Stanford Stadium in Stanford, California.2005 Stanford Cardinal football team
The 2005 Stanford Cardinal football team represented Stanford University in the 2005 NCAA Division I FBS football season. The team was led by first-year head coach Walt Harris, replacing fired coach Buddy Teevens. The team played their home games at Stanford Stadium in Stanford, California and competed in the Pacific-10 Conference.Football at the 1984 Summer Olympics
The association football tournament at the 1984 Summer Olympics started on July 29 and ended on August 11. It was the first Olympic football competition in which professionals were allowed. Until then, the amateur-only rule had heavily favored socialist countries from Eastern Europe whose players were professionals in all but name. However, as agreed with FIFA to preserve the primacy of the World Cup, the Olympic competition was restricted to players with no more than five "A" caps at tournament start, regardless of age.
The football tournament was held in four venues:
Harvard Stadium (Boston)
Navy–Marine Corps Memorial Stadium (Annapolis, Maryland)
Stanford Stadium (Stanford, California)
Rose Bowl, (Pasadena, California)The Gold Medal game between France and Brazil at the Rose Bowl attracted an Olympic Games football attendance record of 101,799. Until 2014 this remained the record attendance for a football game in the United States. This broke the previous Olympics record attendance of 100,000 set at the Melbourne Cricket Ground in Australia for the game of the 1956 Olympic Games played between the Soviet Union and Yugoslavia. The Rose Bowl attendance would remain the Olympic record until 104,098 attended the game of the 2000 Summer Olympics between Cameroon and Spain at the Stadium Australia in Sydney.
The attendance also stood as the highest for a football game in the United States until 109,318 saw Manchester United defeat Real Madrid during the 2014 International Champions Cup at the Michigan Stadium in Ann Arbor.
Football stadiums of the Pac-12 Conference
|Conference Championship Game sites|
Super Bowl stadiums
1994 FIFA World Cup stadiums
1999 FIFA Women's World Cup stadiums
Located in: Stanford, California