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University of Memphis Continues Time to Shine Campaign; Breaks Ground on Football Phase Thursday

MEMPHIS, Tenn. – In August of 2015, University of Memphis athletics announced the public launch of its Time to Shine Capital Campaign. Now the Tigers' athletics initiative continues to shine bright with the football groundbreaking on the University's Park Avenue campus Thursday.

University President Dr. M. David Rudd, Athletics Director Tom Bowen, University of Memphis Board Chairman Alan Graf, University of Memphis Board of Trustees Vice Chairman and former interim University President Brad Martin, and Tigers football head coach Mike Norvell took part in the official groundbreaking ceremony. The projected football facility timeline is a 14-to-20 month build after ground work is completed.

"This is a great day for the University of Memphis," said Dr. Rudd. "This investment is evidence of our commitment to competing at the highest level nationally. This facility is another step in establishing a sustainable top-tier program."

Bowen added, "This is another historic moment for the University of Memphis, as we break ground on our second transformational project in the past 18 months. Through the generous support of our donors, one of the finest facilities in the entire country will help us positively shape our future and our culture of champions."

Time to Shine: Timeline
October 2013 Campaign Announced
December 2013 Lead Gift
2014-15 Private Phase
August 2015 Public Launch
Fall 2015 Men's basketball facility groundbreaking
April 2017 Football facility groundbreaking
October 2017 Men's basketball facility contrsuction completed

Time To Shine: Facilities Improvements

  • The Time to Shine Capital Campaign not only significantly enhances practice and training facilities for Memphis Athletics, but also continues investment to transform the University's Park Avenue Campus.
  • The regional economic impact of Memphis Athletics on the community annually is $101 million. (Gnuschke, 2015)
  • The project is truly unique as the facilities are 100% philanthropic. There are no event-related benefits such as seating or parking tied to donations for the project.
  • Memphis Athletics has never privately constructed a building of this magnitude, let alone two (basketball/football) simultaneously.
  • Coaches will be relocated to the Billy J. Murphy Complex, where the student-athletes eat, train, study and prepare each week. This will create a true home environment for the entire football program and make everything they do more efficient and effective.
  • By investing in facilities projects like these, the University of Memphis can remain relevant and compete for championships. The new practice facilities represent a major commitment from the University and community to help the Tigers compete at the highest level. 

In addition to facilities improvements and arenas of competition, Memphis athletics also is shining in the classroom.

Time To Shine: Academic Success

(Based on recent graduates from the past three commencements)

  • 22% of Tigers student-athletes are from the city of Memphis and surrounding Mid-South communities, directly impacting many first generation students in Memphis that may not otherwise attend college
  • 26% of Tigers student-athletes remain in Memphis and the Mid-South area for work upon completion of their degree, including many who came to the University from outside Memphis and its surrounding communities
  • Internal graduation rate for University of Memphis student-athletes who exhaust their athletic eligibility is 90%
  • Based off the 2008-09 cohort, the University of Memphis' NCAA Graduation Success Rate (GSR) is 85%, which is higher than Florida, Georgia Tech, Kentucky, Louisville, Ole Miss, Oklahoma, Tennessee, Texas and most schools in the American Athletic and Big 12 conferences