STILLWATER – The new home of Oklahoma State Cowgirl Soccer will be named Neal Patterson Stadium after the Oklahoma State/A&M Board of Regents approved the name last Friday.
An Oklahoma State alumnus, the late Patterson was the major benefactor of the $20-million facility, which will be officially dedicated on Aug. 19 prior to the Cowgirls’ match against Oklahoma.
“We will be forever grateful for the support of Neal and his family. Having his name on the stadium will help to ensure that his legacy will be recognized by all of our staff, players, fans and alumni,” said OSU head coach Colin Carmichael. “Neal’s love for OSU and passion for the sport of soccer are what made this dream become a reality. We will continue to strive to honor Neal’s memory and make his family proud of the OSU Soccer program.”
Patterson Stadium will be a unique showcase for college soccer and can accommodate 2,500 fans in permanent seats. The facility includes two suites, club levels, a north terrace area and seating designed specifically for OSU students and a video scoreboard. Team facilities include locker rooms, meeting areas, kitchen facilities, sports medicine areas and equipment rooms.
“The whole complex has (Patterson’s) fingerprints all over it — that stadium is his vision,” said OSU Director of Athletics Mike Holder. “The sad thing is that Neal passed away last summer and his wife passed away a month later, and neither one of them is going to be here to see it open. He never really got to see it under construction.
“But it’s going to have his name on it. We’ll put his name in lights every night as our way of saying thank you. I’d be much happier if he was going to be in the stadium for that first game, but we’ll never, ever, ever forget him.
“Neal Patterson’s legacy will be his family, Cerner and his connection to Oklahoma State University. We’re going to keep his memory alive.”
Patterson grew up near his family’s farm in Manchester, Okla. He earned a bachelor’s degree in finance and a master’s degree in business from Oklahoma State. He is one of five entrepreneurs who founded Sporting Club, which in 2006 purchased the Sporting KC Major League Soccer franchise. He also is chairman of the board and chief executive officer of Cerner Corporation, a company he co-founded with two colleagues in 1979. Today, Cerner is the world’s largest publicly traded health information technology company with $4.8 billion in revenues in 2016 and approximately 24,000 associates worldwide. FORTUNE recently named Cerner one of the world’s most admired companies.
The Cowgirl soccer program was launched in 1996. In its 22 years of existence, OSU has made 11 appearances in the NCAA Women’s Soccer Championship, including reaching the quarterfinals (round of eight) in 2010 and 2011. The program has also won six Big 12 Conference championships, those coming in 2003, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011 and 2017.
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