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Bearcat Stadium

Bearcat Stadium

Northwest Missouri State University's football and track and field facility has been called Bearcat Stadium since 2004. This beautiful, state-of-the-art facility, called "the crown jewel of the MIAA" by the Kansas City Star, was formerly known as Rickenbrode Stadium.

Bearcat Stadium is the longest-running continuous site for football in all of NCAA Division II. No other stadium in Division II has played host to its team's game for as long.

The Bearcats' athletic field was first located behind the Administration Building. But in 1913, the team's game were moved to the field at the current site.

In 1917, construction was completed at the new field and it was named Memorial Stadium. The facility was re-named Rickenbrode Stadium in 1961 by University President J.W. Jones. It was named Rickenbrode Stadium in honor of long-time Northwest employee and Bearcat supporter William Rickenbrode. For nearly 44 years, the facility was named Rickenbrode.

Bearcat StadiumIn 2007, renovations began on the field for an upgrade to synthetic turf and lights. Switching to synthetic turf and adding lights will allow the University to open the field to a variety of activities year-round. On June 28, the Board of Regents gave unanimous approval to have the new field named "Mel Tjeerdsma Field."

In 2000, the first of a wave of major changes to the stadium took place. The east grandstand was completely rebuilt. This project was funded solely by Northwest students.

The renovations weren't finished, however. Following the 2001 season, demolition of the west grandstand and construction of the new west side had begun. The Bearcats played the 2002 season with temporary bleachers and a temporary press seating area.

Bearcat StadiumIn 2003, the new-and-improved stadium was unveiled. The new construction included an increased seating capacity on the west stide, chairback and railback seating, 10 luxury suites, a spacious and functional press area and a new scoreboard, complete with a video board.

The most recent set of renovations was funded entirely by privated funds. Some of these private funds were behind the re-naming of the stadium in 2004.

A small group of anonymous donors wished to give a generous donation to the stadium project. They did not want to be identified. Instead, their wish was that the stadium honor everyone who was involved with making the facility what it is today.



Bearcat Stadium

Hughes Fieldhouse

Located just northwest of College Park and Bearcat Stadium on the Northwest campus, the Carl & Cheryl Hughes Fieldhouse will serve as a host site for a wide range of University and community activities. The project represents the single largest public-private partnership in Northwest’s 112-year history – and one of the largest public-private partnerships ever in the region. The Hughes Fieldhouse features

  • 137,250 square-foot recreation and multipurpose facility featuring recreation and exhibition space,
  • indoor flooring system,
  • 90-yard practice turf,
  • 300-meter indoor competition track,
  • spectator seating and
  • tiered meeting rooms.

The Hughes Fieldhouse is an estimated $20 million project with multiple financing sources, including commitments from the University, private support and community support. The facility is to be named for the Carl and Cheryl Hughes family, who committed a significant gift to the project through the Hughes Family Foundation.

The facility is an anchor of the University’s strategic plan, campus master plan, and comprehensive campaign and congruent with the Maryville Comprehensive Plan.

Staying true to Northwest’s history of sustainability and energy management, Leadership in Energy and Environment Design (LEED) certification is a goal of the facility, which will be designed and constructed according to modern sustainability standards. Construction is underway and is estimated to be completed in Summer 2018.



Driving Directions

From Kansas City (2 hours; 1.5 hours from the airport)
Go north on Interstate 29 through St. Joseph. Proceed north to Exit 56A to Highway 71. Proceed north 35 miles on Highway 71 to Maryville. Take Business 71 into town; it becomes Main Street. Proceed on Main into the downtown area and turn left onto Fourth Street (please follow detour signage to Fourth Street). Follow the Bearcat Paws to campus.

From Des Moines (2 hours, 30 minutes)
Go south on Interstate 35 for 65 miles to the Leon, Iowa Highway 2, exit #12. Turn right and proceed west on Highway 2 for 60 miles to Bedford, Iowa. Turn left on Iowa Highway148 and proceed south for 20 miles to Maryville. Turn Right on Highway CC, and at the intersection of U.S. Highway 71 continue straight on Business 71 and follow it into the downtown area. Turn right on Fourth Street (please follow detour signage to Fourth Street). Follow the Bearcat Paws to campus.

From Omaha-Council Bluffs (2 hours)
Go south on Interstate 29 to Exit 110, Rock Port, Mo. Turn left onto U.S. Highway 136 (east). Follow U.S. 136 to Highway 71. Turn right onto Highway 71 and proceed south to Maryville, 18 miles. Turn right on Icon Road (look for Northwest Missouri State University directional sign) and proceed south approximately 2 miles to campus. Turn left onto College Avenue.

From Lincoln (2 hours)
Go east on Highway 2 through Sidney, Iowa, for 45 miles to Clarinda, Iowa. Turn right onto Highway 71 and proceed 30 miles to Maryville. Turn right on Icon Road (look for Northwest Missouri State University directional sign) and proceed south approximately 2 miles to campus. Turn left onto College Avenue.

From St. Louis (5 hours, 30 minutes)
Go west on Interstate 70 to Kansas City. Exit right onto Interstate 435 North (Des Moines). Exit left onto Interstate 29 North through St. Joseph. Proceed north to Exit #56A to U.S. Highway 71. Proceed north 35 miles on U.S. 71 to Maryville. Take Business 71 into town; it becomes Main Street. Proceed on Main into the downtown area and turn left onto Fourth Street(please follow detour signage to Fourth Street). Follow the Bearcat Paws to campus.




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Our Address

Northwest Missouri State University
800 University Dr.
Maryville, MO 64468