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Edward L. Blackshear Stadium

Prairie View, TX

Home of the Prairie View A&M Panthers



Edward L. Blackshear Stadium (map it)
OJ Thomas & TR Solomon
Prairie View, TX 77446

Prairie View A&M Panthers website

Edward L. Blackshear Stadium website

Year Opened: 1960

Capacity: 6,000

There are no tickets available at this time.


Local Information


Blackshear Stadium, Home of the Prairie View A&M Panthers

Opened in 1960, Blackshear stadium has served as the home to the Panthers of Prairie View A&M for over 50 years. With a campaign active to fundraise for a new sports complex which would include a new football stadium, many are hoping the stadium never sees 60.

Words can’t accurately describe the current state of Edward L. Blackshear Stadium, located on the campus of Prairie View. It’s truly a situation one must see with their eyes to believe. In the state of Texas, home to multi-million dollar high school stadiums with capacities of up to 23,000, to find a Division I football stadium this decrepit is mind-boggling.

If you can look past the awful stadium aesthetics, you’ll find the spirit of Prairie View shining bright in the Marching Storm Band, the Panther Dolls, and the passionate supporters in the stands.


What is FANFARE?

The FANFARE scale is our metric device for rating each stadium experience. It covers the following:

  • Food & Beverage
  • Atmosphere
  • Neighborhood
  • Fans
  • Access
  • Return on Investment
  • Extras

Each area is rated from 0 to 5 stars with 5 being the best. The overall composite score is the "FANFARE Score".

Food & Beverage    3

Though the concession facilities leave much to be desired, the menu offers enough to cure fan hunger. The winning item on the menu is undoubtedly the turkey leg. For $6, it's priced fairly and delicious. Another good option on the menu is boudain ($4). Other options include nachos ($5), hot dog ($3; $4 with chili and cheese), popcorn ($2), and assorted chips and candy ($1). Soda options at Blackshear Stadium include bottled Pepsi products for $2. Alcohol is not available. Bring along some cash because the concession stands do not accept credit/debit card.

Though the menu is very slim, the turkey legs and boudain, as well as very affordable prices add a couple of points to the rating.

Atmosphere    2

It's difficult to fairly rate the atmosphere at Blackshear Stadium because the experience is so negatively affected by the state of the stadium. For SWAC matchups, expect the 6,000 seat stadium to be at or near capacity. The fans are passionate and get loud at key moments in the game. The Marching Storm Band often steals attention away from the on-field action. The band itself it worth the cost of admission. The same can be said for the lovely Panther Dolls. They truly are a show stopper . Prairie View has two costumed mascots, both male and female. They can be seen interacting with fans and joining in cheers with the Panther cheer team.

Though passion and pride are evident in Panther fans, it's impossible to overcome the atmosphere delivered by a stadium that is a couple of sneezes away from the same fate as the first little piggy's straw house. The home side seating area is an old aluminum structure that's about 25 rows tall with a press-box on top in the center. The seats are straight bleacher with no chairbacks. You'll find the band and Panther Dolls taking up about a third of the seating capacity on the south side. There's a small concourse at the foot of the bleachers that crosses from one side to the other. It's apparently inappropriate to cross in front of the Panther Dolls and band on this concourse while they are sitting in the section, so here's a word of caution if you're not sure where you're going.

The visitor section on the east side is made up of three short sets of bleachers that are about 9 rows tall which are barely tall enough to see over the visiting team on the sidelines. In fact, if you sit at the fifty yard line, it's impossible to see what's happening on the field unless you're sitting on the top row and barely getting a view over the visiting bench.

There's a very old scoreboard behind the south end zone containing the bare basics. There's a large track surrounding the football field and running in front of the bleachers. This puts fans a good bit away from the action, especially on the visitor side. The playing surface is natural grass. A few past accomplishments are listed on three faded signs in the back of the north end zone (Prairie View Relays and 2009 SWAC football champions).

I don't want to overstate it, but you really don't feel comfortable or sturdy in the stadium, especially in the visitor seats. The age of the stadium and poor construction is obvious.

Neighborhood    1

Maybe even more depressing than the state of the stadium is the city of Prairie View, Texas. Outside of Brubakers Barbecue and Burger, there's absolutely nothing worth discussing. You'll find a small strip with a Subway and Papa John's. Other than touring the university, which is definitely worth a walk, there's nothing you can consider as an attraction. A few small cities, Cypress, Hempstead, and Waller are a short drive from Prairie View and will offer better food options, shopping, and lodging.

Fans    3

Prairie View fans are very passionate, but they are a bit of a mixed bag. If you're in town for a matchup with a non-SWAC opponent, don't expect much excitement or a full-house. When SWAC opponents are in town, however, the atmosphere is much more exciting.

Additionally, it's important to understand that football in the SWAC revolves around neutral site classic matchups. The atmosphere at the classics is an entirely different experience. The Panthers currently participate in three classics, the Labor Day Classic in Houston against Texas Southern, the Southwest State Fair Classic at the Cotton Bowl in Dallas against Grambling State, and the Shreveport Classic against Jackson State. Expect large crowds, full pageantry, and purple pride on display.

Access    3

Prairie View, Texas is located about 45 miles northwest of Houston. It's almost the definition of the phrase "in the middle of nowhere." However, if you are traveling into Houston, an hour's drive northwest isn't that much of an inconvenience. Once you arrive in Prairie View, the stadium is located just off Highway 290. Parking is free and plentiful around the stadium and campus. You'll be able to quickly make your way to and through the gates (and if you're not careful, you'll walk right in without being asked for a ticket).

With such a small stadium, you'd think getting around inside the gate would be a breeze, but that's not exactly the case. As you approach the main bleacher entrance on the northwest side, you'll find folks hanging around and not being asked to move along. This causes the entry way to the bleachers to be a bit clogged. The same can be said for the concourse at the bottom of the bleachers. Not only is it very skinny, but people tend to hang out and get in the way. There are two small restroom facilities on the home side behind the bleachers. Both are very old, cramped, and the men's restroom doesn't have urinals. On the visitor's side, there's a lone port-a-potty by the northeast gate.

Return on Investment    3

Though the experience really leaves much to be desired due to the state of the facility, the overall cost of a Prairie View Panther football game is very affordable. With that said, if you are catching a SWAC matchup with a good crowd, you'll get to experience quality Division I football without coughing up much cash. Overall, the return on investment is solid.

Extras    1

The only real "extra" of note is superb quality of the Marching Storm Band and Panther Dolls.

There's Hope

Blackshear Stadium s easily the worst football facility in the SWAC, if not the entire Division I FCS, but finally there seems to be some movement afoot to change that..http://www.panther-stadium.com

by Kellybee | Jun 22, 2014 09:09 PM

PVAMU Sports Hall of Fame Committee Member / Alumni

Definitely come back and visit and you will note the beginning of construction of the new football stadium and field house. We broke ground in January 2015. The stadium is set to open in the Fall 2016.

What I do wish, Mr. Derrick, is that you had taken the time to talk with administrators, alumni, students, members of the Foundation, the National Alumni Association, locals from the community or even, SWAC personnel. You wrote a critique which is certainly your right but you have absolutely not one quote from anyone that you may have spoken to. Had you spoken to a variety of people, you may learned some of the background about why the stadium was in the shape that it was in. You may have learned about what was needed for improvements or a new facility. You may have been able to provide information about the fundraising activities for a new stadium. You might have found out why the locals remain in Prairie View. You might have found out why we love Prairie View and why we have a passion for our university; why we have that "Panther Spirit" that is unmoveable in spite of age of Blackshear Field. You might learned about the history of Blackshear Field or the great Coach William "Billy" Nicks, the greats who played on that field like Clem Daniels, Jim Kearney, Ray Seals, Richard Seals, Sam Adams, Matthew Teague, Freddie James, John Payton, Sebastian Barrie, Alvin Reed, Joe Washington, Charles Brackens, Charles Garcia, Carl Jackson, NFL Pro Hall of Famer, Ken Houston and Otis Taylor. Or what about our Silver & Gold Medalist Olympians who ran around the track that surrounds Blackshear Field like Fred Newhouse, Carlos Hayward, Andrea Bruce, Alvin Dotson, Debra Sapenter, Carol Kellum and Essie Kelley coached by the great Hoover Wright and Barbara Jacket. , our championship teams of 1953, 55, 58, 63, 64 and 2009. There is so much more that is missing from your critique.... so much history that you left out of that wonderful "age[d]", "decrepit", " awful stadium aesthetics", " a couple of sneezes away .. little piggy's straw house",

By the way, that "very old scoreboard ..... containing the bare basics" that you mentioned, there were alum who were clamoring for possession of that scoreboard for the sake of memories of our beloved Blackshear Field; alum who wanted sections of the bleachers that alum also wanted; some of us even took grass from Blackshear Field before it was demolished.

The "extra note" is the love that administrators, alum, students. friends, fans and community demonstrated for Blackshear Field. But then again, isn't that what love really is about ... loving someone or in this case, something --- our history at Blackshear Field --- in spite of its faults or what the outside looks like? We love it because of it's service to us.

by pdarden3 | Mar 08, 2015 05:54 PM

There's Hope (Part II)

Construction is underway on the new PVAMU football stadium...here's an article from the Bryan-College Station Eagle:


Kudos to the Prairie View A&M Foundation and everyone involved in giving an historic football program the facility it deserves. I can't wait to be there!

by Kellybee | Jan 23, 2016 08:02 AM

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736 University Dr

Prairie View, TX 77446

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