Cardinal Stadium in October 2018
|Former names||Papa John's Cardinal Stadium (1998–2018)|
|Location||2800 South Floyd Street|
Louisville, KY 40209
|Owner||University of Louisville|
|Operator||University of Louisville|
|Broke ground||June 19, 1996|
|Opened||September 5, 1998|
|Construction cost|| $135 million|
($208 million in 2018 dollars )
|Architect|| Rosser International |
Luckett & Farley
|General contractor||Huber, Hunt & Nichols|
|Louisville Cardinals (NCAA) (1998–present)|
Cardinal Stadium, formerly known as Papa John's Cardinal Stadium, is a football stadium located in Louisville, Kentucky, United States, on the southern end of the campus of the University of Louisville. Debuting in 1998, it serves as the home of the Louisville Cardinals football program. The official seating capacity in the quasi-horseshoe shaped facility was 42,000 through the 2008 season. An expansion project that started after the 2008 season was completed in time for the 2010 season has brought the official capacity to 55,000.An additional expansion project aiming to close the open end of the horseshoe to add 6,000 additional seats was announced on August 28, 2015, and was completed in 2019.
American football, referred to as football in the United States and Canada and also known as gridiron, is a team sport played by two teams of eleven players on a rectangular field with goalposts at each end. The offense, the team with possession of the oval-shaped football, attempts to advance down the field by running with the ball or passing it, while the defense, the team without possession of the ball, aims to stop the offense's advance and to take control of the ball for themselves. The offense must advance at least ten yards in four downs or plays; if they fail, they turn over the football to the defense, but if they succeed, they are given a new set of four downs to continue the drive. Points are scored primarily by advancing the ball into the opposing team's end zone for a touchdown or kicking the ball through the opponent's goalposts for a field goal. The team with the most points at the end of a game wins.
Louisville is the largest city in the Commonwealth of Kentucky and the 29th most-populous city in the United States. It is one of two cities in Kentucky designated as first-class, the other being Lexington, the state's second-largest city. Louisville is the historical seat and, since 2003, the nominal seat of Jefferson County, on the Indiana border.
The University of Louisville is a public university in Louisville, Kentucky, a member of the Kentucky state university system. When founded in 1798, it was the first city-owned public university in the United States and one of the first universities chartered west of the Allegheny Mountains. The university is mandated by the Kentucky General Assembly to be a "Preeminent Metropolitan Research University". The university enrolls students from 118 of 120 Kentucky counties, all 50 U.S. states, and 116 countries around the world.
Due to the Kentucky General Assembly being unable to provide any public funding, construction of the stadium began with private funds, which included the reclamation of the land upon which the South Louisville Rail Yard was situated. The soils of the 92 acre brownfield site contained 47 different contaminants of concern before the project began. The rail yard's shift horn was saved and installed in the stadium's north end zone scoreboard and is sounded whenever the Cardinals score.
The Kentucky General Assembly, also called the Kentucky Legislature, is the state legislature of the U.S. state of Kentucky. It comprises the Kentucky Senate and the Kentucky House of Representatives.
In urban planning, brownfield land is any previously developed land that is not currently in use, whether contaminated or not. The term is also used to describe land previously used for industrial or commercial purposes with known or suspected pollution including soil contamination due to hazardous waste.
The new parking at the stadium allowed many commuting students more parking access. This ultimately led to more redevelopment of on-campus parking lots, turning them into various athletic facilities.
In 2000, Central Avenue was widened and extended from Taylor Boulevard to Crittenden Drive, a major redevelopment project. Because the road connected Churchill Downs, an entrance to the Kentucky Exposition Center (which is home to Freedom Hall) and the university's new baseball venue, Jim Patterson Stadium, all located within a mile of each other, the road has now been dubbed as "Louisville's Sports Corridor".
Churchill Downs, located on Central Avenue in south Louisville, Kentucky, United States, is a Thoroughbred racetrack most famous for annually hosting the Kentucky Derby. It officially opened in 1875 and was named for Samuel Churchill, whose family was prominent in Kentucky for many years. The first Kentucky Derby and the first Kentucky Oaks were held in the same year. Churchill Downs has also hosted the renowned Breeders' Cup on nine occasions, most recently on November 2 and 3, 2018. Churchill Downs Incorporated owns and operates the racetrack. With the infield open for the Kentucky Derby, the capacity of Churchill Downs is roughly 170,000.
The Kentucky Exposition Center (KEC), is a large multi-use facility in Louisville, Kentucky, United States. Originally built in 1956. It is overseen by the Kentucky Venues and is the sixth largest facility of its type in the U.S., with 1,300,000 square feet (120,000 m2) of indoor space. KEC has two arenas, almost 700,000 sq. ft of Class A exhibit space, nearly 500 acres of outdoor planning space. A majority of the 1.3 million square feet is contiguous.
Freedom Hall is a multi-purpose arena in Louisville, Kentucky, on the grounds of the Kentucky Exposition Center, which is owned by the Commonwealth of Kentucky. It is best known for its use as a basketball arena, serving as the home of the University of Louisville Cardinals It has hosted Motley Crue, Elvis Presley, The Doors, Janis Joplin, Creed, Led Zeppelin, Van Halen and many more. As well as many Weeks events men's team from 1956 to 2010, the Kentucky Colonels of the American Basketball Association from 1970 until the ABA-NBA merger in June 1976, and the Louisville Cardinals women's team from its inception in 1975 to 2010. Freedom Hall's last regular tenant was the Kentucky Stickhorses of the North American Lacrosse League, who used it from 2011 until the team folded in 2013. From 2015 to 2019 it has hosted the VEX Robotics Competition World Championships yearly in mid-April.
The stadium was named for old Cardinal Stadium, which is located at the Kentucky Exposition Center, but with corporate naming rights formerly providing a prefix to the main name. John Schnatter, a native of nearby Jeffersonville, Indiana, donated $5 million for the naming rights to the stadium, which he used to christen the venue for his Papa John's Pizza chain.Schnatter made a further $10 million donation for the stadium's expansion, and extended the naming rights to the year 2040.
"Old" Cardinal Stadium was the common name of a former college and minor league baseball and college football stadium in Louisville, Kentucky, officially named Cardinal Stadium. It was on the grounds of the Kentucky Exposition Center, and was called Fairgrounds Stadium when it first opened for an NFL exhibition football game between the Baltimore Colts and Philadelphia Eagles on September 9, 1956. It was demolished in 2019.
John H. Schnatter, nicknamed commercially as Papa John, is an American entrepreneur who founded Papa John's Pizza in 1984. Schnatter stepped down as CEO on January 1, 2018, after comments he made in November 2017 criticizing National Football League commissioner Roger Goodell for allegedly not doing anything about national anthem protests by football players. He was succeeded as CEO by President and COO Steve Ritchie, but remained chairman of the board of directors until July 2018. He then resigned as chairman of the board on July 11, 2018, when a scandal broke out over his use of a racial slur when trying to minimize the controversy over his NFL national anthem comments by alleging that Colonel Harland Sanders had used the slur and it had not affected his popularity. As of May 23, 2019, he had reduced his stake in the company to 19%. He remains the company's largest shareholder.
Jeffersonville is a city in Clark County, Indiana, along the Ohio River. Locally, the city is often referred to by the abbreviated name Jeff. It is directly across the Ohio River to the north of Louisville, Kentucky, along I-65. The population was 44,953 at the 2010 census. The city is the county seat of Clark County.
The stadium was christened on September 5, 1998; the Cardinals lost the opening game to the Kentucky Wildcats 68–34but won all other home games that year.
The Kentucky Wildcats football program represents the University of Kentucky in the sport of American football. The Wildcats compete in the Football Bowl Subdivision (FBS) of the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) and the Eastern Division of the Southeastern Conference (SEC). The Wildcats play their home games at Kroger Field in Lexington, Kentucky and are currently led by head coach Mark Stoops.
On July 13, 2018, the stadium was renamed Cardinal Stadium by University of Louisville President Neeli Bendapudi. The change was a reaction to Schnatter using a racial slur on a Papa John's conference call.
Neeli Bendapudi is an American academic and the 18th president of the University of Louisville.
At the north end of the stadium is the Howard Schnellenberger Football Complex, which houses the football offices and the conditioning center for the football team. Also at the north end is a bronze statue of Johnny Unitas, NFL great and the most famous football alumnus of the university. As part of game day tradition, each Cardinal player touches the base of the statue before entering the field prior to kickoff. In 2006 the $10 million Trager Center, an indoor practice facility opened just north of the Schnellenberger Complex, providing a dry and warm area to allow undisrupted practices in Louisville's highly variable weather.
An interesting feature is the Brown and Williamson Club located at the rear of the stadium's press box. It contains several large ball rooms and is rented out for receptions to bring in additional revenue. It is also often used by the school to host prominent visiting speakers. The venue overlooks the school's new Jim Patterson Stadium and Jewish Hospital Sports Medicine complex, which was completed in 2005.
At the start of the 2006 football season, a new state-of-the-art high definition scoreboard was installed in the north end zone. It is three times as large as the previous scoreboard. A new red LED scoreboard was also installed in the south end zone, as was a lighted "University of Louisville" sign around the upper rim of the exterior of the east stands, which increases the stadium's visibility from Interstate 65.
The stadium has hosted many events apart from U of L football, among them soccer matches, including fixtures for the US women's national team; concerts; auto shows; and the annual DCI Louisville drum & bugle corps competition, hosting several corps from the midwest.
In high school football, it has hosted a local event known as the Ray Adams Charger Classic, plus various other games. Most notably, Cardinal Stadium is the regular host of two major city rivalries—the Catholic rivalry between St. Xavier and Trinity, which regularly draws crowds in the 35,000 range; and the Male-Manual game, a public-school battle which is the longest running, continuously played high school football rivalry in America. It was also the annual site of the Kentucky state high school football championship games until the 2009 season, when the games were moved to Western Kentucky University in Bowling Green. Eventually, they were moved to Kroger Field at the University of Kentucky.
|Date||Artist||Opening act(s)||Tour / Concert name||Attendance||Revenue||Notes|
|May 30, 2009||Kenny Chesney|| Lady Antebellum |
|Sun City Carnival Tour||40,144 / 40,144||$2,881,832|
|May 28, 2016||Kenny Chesney|| Miranda Lambert |
|Spread the Love Tour||42,448 / 45,500||$2,475,354|
|June 16, 2017||U2||OneRepublic||The Joshua Tree Tour 2017||45,491 / 45,491||$4,810,535|
|June 30, 2018||Taylor Swift|| Camila Cabello |
|Taylor Swift's Reputation Stadium Tour||52,138 / 52,138||$4,928,219||The show is the highest attended and highest grossing show in the stadium, and was also the last event under the "Papa John's Cardinal Stadium" name.|
The venue has also seen use for large religious events. Evangelist Billy Graham held one of his crusades at the stadium. The Bands of America Louisville Regional Championships, have also been held at the stadium numerous times, since 2004, hosting bands from Indiana, Ohio, Illinois, Kentucky, and other states around the region.
In October 2006, an official rendering and details were released of what an expanded stadium would look like and cost. The ambitious original plan called for an additional 21,600 seats and 70 suites added via a new upper deck on the side opposite the main press box area, all for an estimated price tag of $63 million, which is almost identical to the cost to build the original stadium.
On August 27, 2007, John Schnatter donated $10 million in support of the expansion, and extended naming rights through 2040. The Kentucky General Assembly, the state legislature, provided the balance of funding for the project. The stadium is therefore about 46% state-funded in total.
On December 1, 2008, construction started on the east side of the stadium, and the expansion was finished in Fall 2010. The expansion was scaled down from the original plans with about 13,000 additional seats (1,725 of which are higher-priced club seats) and 33 suites instead of the originally planned 70. There is also a 100-yard-long luxury room called the PNC Club, which is similar to the west-side Brown & Williamson Club but has a glassed-in view of the field. There is also standing space for 2,500 people on the new Norton Healthcare Terrace located on the south end (closed end) of the horseshoe-shaped stadium. The expansion, which eventually cost $72 million, also included 20 new rest rooms, two new 345' x 3' LED ribbon boards located on the fascia of the east and west sides of the stadium, a new 60' x 20' LED video board on the south end of the stadium, matching in size the existing board on the north end, and a new 13 x 9 LED board facing outside the stadium to the south.
As of November 2013, The University of Louisville is looking into future stadium expansion as the university announced it is accepting bids from organizations looking to study the possibility of adding seats to the North end zone of Cardinal Stadium. Former head coach Charlie Strong stated in September 2013 that he would like to see the stadium enclosed at the North end zone. The Stadium was originally designed with the ability to expand up to 80,000 seats.
The University of Louisville announced on December 1, 2014 that supporters have matched a $3 million gift given by Thorntons Inc. to construct a new academic center underneath the Norton Terrace. It will house all academic functions for the university's athletic department and place classes for student-athletes under one roof. The 40,000-square-foot facility will have tutorial space, laboratories, and offices and classrooms to serve more than 750 student-athletes across the university's 23 sports. Construction of the facility is expected to begin by the spring, and officials project work will be completed by fall 2016.
The University of Louisville announced on August 28, 2015, that a new planned expansion would add 10,000 additional seats to the stadium at the north end zone, which would have brought the total number of seats in the stadium to 65,000; however, the university later decided to allocate seating space to other amenities so that only about 6,000 seats would be added in this project.The football team continued playing in the stadium during construction, and the project was completed in 2019. The expansion added 10 field-level suites, 65 box seats at the club level, and 1,000 club seats with a VIP gathering area.
Papa Johns is an American pizza restaurant franchise. It runs the fourth largest pizza delivery restaurant chain in the United States, with headquarters in Jeffersontown, Kentucky, a suburb of Louisville.
The Louisville Cardinals teams play in the Atlantic Coast Conference, beginning in the 2014 season. While playing in the Big East Conference from 2005 through 2013, the Cardinals captured 17 regular season Big East titles and 33 Big East Tournament titles totaling 50 Big East Championships across all sports. With their 2013 Sugar Bowl appearance against the Florida Gators, the Cardinals football team became the only football team in the Commonwealth of Kentucky to have appeared in and won two Bowl Championship Series bowls, having defeated Wake Forest 24–13 in the 2007 Orange Bowl and Florida 33–23 in the 2013 Sugar Bowl. On November 28, 2012, Louisville received and accepted an invitation to join the Atlantic Coast Conference and became a participating member in all sports in 2014. In 2016, Lamar Jackson won the school its first Heisman Trophy. Their fan base is referred to as “Card Nation.”
The Kentucky–Louisville rivalry refers to the rivalry between the University of Kentucky Wildcats (Kentucky) and the University of Louisville Cardinals (Louisville). The Kentucky–Louisville rivalry is one of the most passionate rivalries, especially in men's college basketball. It is considered one of the most intense rivalries in the NCAA. The intensity of the rivalry is captivated by the proximity of the two schools, the state of Kentucky's interest in college sports, as well as cultural differences between the city of Louisville and the rest of the state.
The Louisville Cardinals football team represents the University of Louisville in the sport of American football. The Cardinals compete in the Football Bowl Subdivision (FBS) of the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) and compete in the Atlantic Coast Conference.
Jim Patterson Stadium is a baseball stadium in Louisville, Kentucky. It is the home field of the University of Louisville Cardinals college baseball team. It hosted the 2007 NCAA Super Regionals, where the Cardinals defeated Oklahoma State two games to one to advance to the College World Series in Omaha, Nebraska. Since then, the Cardinals have hosted a NCAA Division I Baseball Championship every year since the year of 2012. In 2016, the Cardinals ranked 27th among Division I baseball programs in attendance, averaging 2,606 per home game. Along with that, the Cardinals have been ranked in the top 10 amongst other collegiate baseball teams in the nation according to Baseball America. Coach Dan McDonnell has been the head coach of the Louisville Cardinals baseball team since the year of 2007 after coming from Ole Miss as an assistant coach. Since making his way to Louisville, he has led the team to four College World Series and seven NCAA Super Regionals.
The Governor's Cup is a trophy awarded to the victor of the annual college football game between the University of Kentucky and the University of Louisville in the state of Kentucky; it is also used as a reference to the rivalry itself. Though the teams first played in 1912, they only played six times until the rivalry was suspended after the 1924 season and wasn’t renewed for another 70 years. The rivalry resumed in 1994 with a new Governor's Cup trophy which has been awarded every year since.
The 2010 Kentucky Wildcats football team represented the University of Kentucky during the 2010 NCAA Division I FBS football season. The Wildcats, led by first-year head coach Joker Phillips, competed in the Eastern Division of the Southeastern Conference and played their home games at Commonwealth Stadium. They finished the season 6–7, 2–6 in SEC play and were invited to the BBVA Compass Bowl where they were defeated by Pittsburgh 10–27.
The 2009 Louisville Cardinals football team represented the University of Louisville in the 2009 NCAA Division I FBS football season. The Cardinals were coached by Steve Kragthorpe, who was in his third season at Louisville. The Cardinals played their home games at Papa John's Cardinal Stadium. The Cardinals finished the season with a record 4–8 and 1–6 in Big East play. Kragthorpe was fired at the end of the season.
The 2010 Louisville Cardinals football team represented the University of Louisville in the 2010 NCAA Division I FBS football season. The Cardinals were led by head coach Charlie Strong, who was in his first season. They played their home games at Papa John's Cardinal Stadium and were members of the Big East Conference. They finished the season 7–6, 3–4 in Big East play and were invited to the Beef 'O' Brady's Bowl, where they defeated Southern Miss, 31–28.
The University of Louisville Cardinal Marching Band is the official marching band of the University of Louisville in Louisville, Kentucky. It is considered a Music Ambassador for UofL. The CMB performs at all home football games at Cardinal Stadium (PJCS), all postseason bowl games, and select away football games. It also plays at the annual Spring Scrimmage Game which pits the Cardinal Offense against the Cardinal Defense.
The 2011 Louisville Cardinals football team represented the University of Louisville in the 2011 NCAA Division I FBS football season. The Cardinals were led by second-year head coach Charlie Strong and played their home games at Papa John's Cardinal Stadium. They were a member of the Big East Conference. They finished the season 7–6, 5–2 in Big East play to share the conference championship with Cincinnati and West Virginia. Due to tie-break rules, the Cardinals did not receive the Big East's automatic bid into a BCS bowl; West Virginia received the bid. The Cardinals were instead invited to the Belk Bowl, where they were defeated by North Carolina State, 31–24.
Dr. Mark & Cindy Lynn Stadium is a soccer-specific stadium for college soccer in Louisville, Kentucky. The stadium was built for the University of Louisville Cardinals Men's and Women's Soccer teams. The teams compete in the Atlantic Coast Conference.
The 2014 Louisville Cardinals football team represented the University of Louisville in the 2014 NCAA Division I FBS football season. The Cardinals were led by head coach Bobby Petrino, who began his second stint at Louisville after eight years away, seven of which were spent as a head coach at other colleges and in the National Football League (NFL). The team played its 17th season at Papa John's Cardinal Stadium in Louisville, Kentucky. They were in their first season as members of the Atlantic Coast Conference, having replaced departed member Maryland in the Atlantic Division. They finished the season 9–4, 5–3 in ACC play to finish in third place in the Atlantic Division. They were invited to the Belk Bowl, where they lost to Georgia.
The 2016 Kentucky Wildcats football team represented the University of Kentucky in the 2016 NCAA Division I FBS football season. The season was the program's 123rd overall and 83rd as a member of the Southeastern Conference (SEC). They were led by fourth-year head coach Mark Stoops and the played home games at Commonwealth Stadium in Lexington, Kentucky. They finished the season 7–6, 4–4 in SEC play to finish in a three-way tie for second place in the Eastern Division. They were invited to the TaxSlayer Bowl where they lost to Georgia Tech.
The 2018 NCAA Division I FBS football season was the highest level college football competition in the United States organized by the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) in 2018.