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Memorial Stadium

Bloomington, IN

Home of the Indiana Hoosiers

3.6

3.3

Memorial Stadium (map it)
1001 E 17th St
Bloomington, IN 47408


Indiana Hoosiers website

Memorial Stadium website

Year Opened: 1960

Capacity: 52,929

There are no tickets available at this time.

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Defend the Rock

Memorial Stadium, AKA "The Rock," is the home to the Indiana University football program. The stadium was dedicated in 1960 and was renovated and expanded multiple times including the north end getting enclosed to bring the stadium's capacity to 52,929.

The classical looking horseshoe-shaped stadium incorporates synthetic turf and was constructed out of limestone from nearby southern Indiana rock quarries. The area of the state is noted for possessing some of the world's best limestone. The majority of the campus features ornate limestone entrances and Memorial Stadium fits in magnificently to the aesthetics of the campus buildings.

Football has been played on campus since 1899 and is often overshadowed by the basketball program; however, a day at Memorial Stadium might make a nice little treat for your college football appetite.

3.6

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    4

There are four different areas to order pulled pork, amazingly, since Indiana is not well known for its barbecue. However, Great White Smoke is your best option and all you need is to follow the smoke to enjoy something tasty from its massive smoker that sits near the main entrance.

Once you enjoyed your pulled pork or brisket sandwich, grab yourself a giant pretzel from Ben's, but be patient, lines can be long for the regional favorite. If you want something a tad bit sweeter, grab a bag of Inga's Gourmet Popcorn that comes in a variety of flavors including cheddar, pumpkin spice, caramel, and snickerdoodle or freshly prepared kettle korn.

There are still more delicious encounters that include a pack of eight mini donuts sprinkled with cinnamon and sugar for $3, giant turkey legs for $8, and ham and turkey sandwiches for $7. If you like hot dogs and nachos, they have them here too. Coca-Cola products are the norm here and like a majority of campus university stadium's, alcoholic beverages are not served.

Atmosphere    3

Certain games bring out the masses to Memorial Stadium. Games against Michigan, Ohio State, Michigan State, and in-state rivals Purdue will see an influx of crowds gathered throughout the massive seating structures.

During the game the Hoosier Nation have certain traditions that fall in line with many other college programs. The Third Down Shark Chomp is perform whenever the Hoosiers are on defense and need a stop on third down. Fans are prompted to make noise and do the shark chomp. The school's fight song is played after every touchdown and sparks pride and passion from the fans in the stands who end each song with the fists and blades.

Many enjoy tailgating in the grass covered lots before, during, and after the game. You will find folks tossing footballs or bags for cornhole games, barbecue pits, and copious crushed cans of beer. Fans march into the stadium in large groups and many, if all, are sporting the red or crimson colors of the Hoosiers.

At the south end of the stadium is "Knothole Park" where kids run around and mimic their favorite football players on a miniature playing field. The kids could spend the whole game throwing and catching the football, while parents enjoy a fantastic view of the game.

Neighborhood    4

The stadium sits on campus offering numerous choices for eating, drinking, and shopping nearby that are within 1-2 miles. Mother Bear's is highly recommended by any local resident of Bloomington. Their pizza has a unique sweet sauce, but be patient, since parking is scarce and limited.

Lennie's is another local restaurant, with a lot more parking, featuring tasty sandwiches, pizza, and stromboli. They also serve beers from the Bloomington Brewery Company. Grab a Ruby Bloom Amber and you will see what is meant by a great craft beer.

The heart of Bloomington is Kirkwood Ave., and the street features two local institutions Nick's English Hut and Kilroy's. The square features various shops, bars, and more restaurants. One time honored tradition is to play the drinking game Sink the Biz at Nick's.

A great idea on a warm afternoon is a visit to Oliver Winery. The beautiful gardens of flowers, water fountains and picnic areas around the lake make this a romantic spot for couples or a great place to enjoy wine with friends. It is one of the best places for wine in the entire state.

Fans    3

This might be a basketball college, but they also love their football team. Supporters can be heard talking about the game during halftime, whether it is complaining about a few calls or how their home team could have found ways to muster a few more points on the board. The football program has given their fans a few reasons to cheer and playing in the Big Ten against midwest rivals, the Hoosier faithful can compete against the boys from Michigan, Wisconsin, Ohio State, and their arch rivals from Purdue.

Access    4

This is one of the easiest stadiums to access in the Big Ten. Memorial Stadium is located on 17th Street, just less than a mile from the 45/36 exit. There are not any signs off the state road, but trust your GPS and you should have no trouble.

Parking at the stadium is $20, but there are lots scattered nearby that range in price around the $10 mark. There is also paid parking in some of the residential homes and driveways nearby the stadium. Also, if you can find a free spot to park around campus, it could provide a nice walk to and from the stadium.

Return on Investment    4

Ticket prices average around $50, but can be a bit higher for games against Michigan State, Ohio State, or the Old Oaken Bucket game against Purdue. You may even find lower priced seats from students or online for games against Rutgers or Ball State. These prices are a little more affordable than some of the other Big 10 markets.

Extras    3

One point given to IU leaving Assembly Hall and the team store inside it open on football game days. As a fan that travels to sports venues, it is quite the treat to be able to walk inside the legendary facility on a non-basketball game day. Many visiting fans shared my beliefs and accompanied on my walk around Assembly Hall. I appreciate IU giving tourists like me the opportunity to see a football game at Memorial Stadium and then taking an open tour of Assembly Hall.

A second point for "Hep's Rock" located in the back of the end zone in the north end of the stadium. The giant piece of limestone was moved from the practice field and serves as both a symbolic piece and memorial to former football coach Terry Hoeppner. Players touch the rock before entering the field of play before battling it out on the gridiron to "Defend the Rock."

A third point for the various posters of past All-Americans of the last century at both concourses of the stadium. Football has been played on campus for 118 years where many greats suited up for battle on the gridiron.

Final Thoughts

There are numerous reasons to go see a game at Memorial Stadium. The tickets are reasonably priced, easy access in and out of the stadium, and there are great nearby bars and restaurants. Bloomington is one of those college towns that people are enamored by and they talk highly of it to friends. It is great little town to visit for the weekend and with football, wineries, and nightlife, you cannot go wrong with a visit.

While most naive Big 10 fans think Indiana football is a joke, I found it to be one of the most fulf

While most naive Big 10 fans think Indiana football is a joke, I found it to be one of the most fulfilling experiences in the Big 10. My personal experience is here (http://www.thebig10tour.com/indiana.html). I think the tailgating is among the best in college football and the stadium is absolutely beautiful. I've also enjoyed the access and proximity to the playing field that many fans can get.

by DrewCieszynski | Sep 10, 2010 07:36 PM

Beware of KnotHole

Really enjoyed my trip to Bloomington.Tailgating was good and the Indiana fans were a joy to be around. The game was a sellout ,with Michiagn in town,and made for a great atmosphere.My 2 sons loved THE WALK and KnotHole Park.If your there during warmups watch out for the balls flying through the air.As one guy was more worried about his Blackberry and caught a football with his face.Adults also can also get a little crazy trying to snag a FG or Extra Point from the kids.

by mattyb | Jan 10, 2011 08:11 AM

Irish Lion

As an IU alum, you captured the feel of the experience in your review. Bloomington has many wonderful places to drown your sorrows and forget about another Hoosier loss. The Irish Lion is a hidden gem!

by AlaTex | May 24, 2011 10:24 PM

Move the Rock

I think it would be better if they moved the Rock to a different locations, so fans would have access to it - touch it, take pics, etc. - when I was there I think fans in certain sections had access, but not most people.

by Aaron S. Terry | Nov 03, 2015 05:35 PM

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Crowd Reviews

Indiana, Our Indiana

Total Score: 4.00

  • Food & Beverage: 4
  • Atmosphere 4
  • Neighborhood: 4
  • Fans: 4
  • Access: 5
  • RoI: 4
  • Extras: 3

Over the past several years, Indiana University has renovated Memorial Stadium into a fine facility, with plenty of modern amenities to help build the football tradition, and enhance the experience of attending a Hoosiers pigskin game. The horseshoe-shaped stadium is family-friendly, student-friendly, but mostly football-friendly. So much so, you'll almost forget that you're in basketball country. Almost.

The Stadium has become known as "The Rock" ever since former head coach Terry Hoeppner had a limestone boulder from southern Indiana installed near the north end zone.

Indy Rock

Total Score: 4.29

  • Food & Beverage: 4
  • Atmosphere 4
  • Neighborhood: 5
  • Fans: 4
  • Access: 5
  • RoI: 5
  • Extras: 3

Memorial Stadium is one of the Big Ten's hidden gems. Located in the heart of Southern Indiana on the campus of Indiana University, Memorial Stadium offers a scenic getaway from the urban life where bicycles are almost as abundant as cars.

Although, Indiana University is most closely associated with basketball, it has been Memorial Stadium that has seen the most investment dollars from the athletic department. What once used to be an ordinary, traditional, and generic end zone to end zone stadium, Memorial Stadium now boasts a unique horseshoe design that pays tribute to the areas limestone mining industry.

Behind the newly renovated north end zone, you will find a massive rock standing by itself. This isn't any ordinary rock. It was placed there by the late Terry Hoeppner when he was head coach of the Hoosiers so that every single player will remember who they are playing for. Today, Memorial Stadium is known as "The Rock."

Big 10 Tour stop in Indiana

Total Score: 4.00

  • Food & Beverage: 3
  • Atmosphere 3
  • Neighborhood: 5
  • Fans: 4
  • Access: 4
  • RoI: 5
  • Extras: 4

Under-rated...stop by!

My Visit 10/20/2007

Total Score: 4.14

  • Food & Beverage: 4
  • Atmosphere 4
  • Neighborhood: 4
  • Fans: 4
  • Access: 5
  • RoI: 5
  • Extras: 3

My visit to Memorial Field was for the Penn State @ Indiana game on 10/20/2007. The attendance that day was 41,251. The stadium was under construction, but it still had a nice atmosphere.

The food was great with standard stadium options, plus lots of name brand food options, including my favorite Chick-fil-A. The only problem was the lines at some of the specialty stands. For instance, there was only 1 Chick-fil-A trailer in the entire stadium the day I was there. To be fair, not sure how construction affected the food stands.

The atmosphere was great. Nice tailgates were going on all around the stadium and the fans were extremely nice to us. Overall it was a very welcoming atmosphere. Also, it was great to hear the band play quite often instead of the commercialization and piped in music you get in the bigger stadiums.

I can't comment too much on the neighborhood as we stayed about 20 minutes from the stadium and didn't spend any real time in Bloomington. Getting to the stadium and parking were fairly easy. The walk was relatively short although it was over gravel, which can be a real ankle killer. We did make a stop into Assembly Hall to look around, however in retrospect I wish we would have also gone through the IU Hall of Fame.

As mentioned earlier, the fans were great. Very welcoming, not offended when we cheered for Penn State and were well in tune with the game. The big thing was that they don't fill the stadium. It was disappointing the see, considering they were a bowl team that year for the first time in decades. The fans also do some weird thing where they wiggle their fingers and chant on each first down Indiana picks up.

Access was easy. The steps leading into the stadium at gate 3 are probably 3 times bigger than they need to be, facilitating easy entrance to the gates and the concourses are very wide. Our seats were easy to find and we had plenty of room. A few things were a little restricted due to the construction when we were there, but not intrusive to the flow of people.

I think our tickets were around $36 and located near the 30 yard line, about 35 rows up. Between the nice fans, easy access and great seats, I feel that the return on investment was great. Just don't understand why more people around Indiana don't take advantage and attend games.

The main extra for me was the area where the kids' field currently sits. It was under construction at the time, but they still allowed the children to chase after the footballs and keep the ones they retrieved. I also enjoyed the fact that Assembly Hall was open on game day.

Not Bad

Total Score: 3.86

  • Food & Beverage: 3
  • Atmosphere 4
  • Neighborhood: 4
  • Fans: 4
  • Access: 4
  • RoI: 4
  • Extras: 4

The stadium was a lot bigger than expected. We were able to run around and play on the stadium a few hours before the game. The stadium filled up pretty nice and the college kids made the place have a good atmosphere. It was a good experience.

Pretty good stadium

Total Score: 3.71

  • Food & Beverage: 3
  • Atmosphere 3
  • Neighborhood: 5
  • Fans: 4
  • Access: 4
  • RoI: 4
  • Extras: 3

Better stadium than expected, even by Big 10 standards. Stadium is laid out well, fans are pleasant and into the game even though the team may not field the most competitive team every week. My family had an enjoyable experience in Bloomington.

Welcome to the Rock

Total Score: 3.86

  • Food & Beverage: 5
  • Atmosphere 3
  • Neighborhood: 4
  • Fans: 4
  • Access: 4
  • RoI: 4
  • Extras: 3

Memorial Stadium, also known as “The Rock,” is to the home to the Indiana University football program. The stadium was dedicated in 1960 and has been renovated in 2003 and expanded multiple times to its current capacity of 52,929. It is located adjacent to the home of Indiana Hoosiers basketball, Assembly Hall, and other of the school’s athletic venues.

The classical looking horseshoe-shaped stadium incorporates synthetic turf and features a giant limestone boulder at the player’s entrance of the end zone that is nicknamed “Hep’s Rock” after former coach Terry Hoeppner who began a tradition of players touching the rock before every game. In fact, a lot of the stadium was built out of limestone from nearby southern Indiana rock quarries.

Memorial Stadium may not get the same appreciation compared to other notable Big Ten stadiums like Ohio State, Michigan, and Wisconsin, but if you are in Bloomington, Indiana, then a day at Memorial Stadium, coupled with spending time in town, is a win-win situation for any stadium traveler.

A look back

Total Score: 2.71

  • Food & Beverage: 3
  • Atmosphere 2
  • Neighborhood: 3
  • Fans: 2
  • Access: 3
  • RoI: 4
  • Extras: 2

Admittedly I attended a game here a while back, and it wasn't a great experience. First of all there was a lot of construction going on at the time, so it was very difficult to get around. The staff also wasn't very friendly, they seemed very picky about a lot of things. Also the crowd was very small - Indiana is not a great program, I don't think they have had a winning season since 2007, so the small crowd makes sense. They started off this year very well, but have now lost 4 straight.

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Local Food & Drink

Scotty's Brewhouse  (map it!)

302 N Walnut St

Bloomington, IN 47404

(812) 333-5151

http://www.scottysbrewhouse.com/

The Irish Lion  (map it!)

212 West Kirkwood Avenue

Bloomington, IN 47404

(812) 336-9076

http://www.irishlion.com/

Crazy Horse  (map it!)

214 W Kirkwood Ave

Bloomington, IN 47404

(812) 336-8877

http://www.crazyhorseindiana.com/

Yogi's  (map it!)

519 E 10th St

Bloomington, IN 47408

(812) 323-9644

http://www.yogis.com/

Mother Bear’s  (map it!)

1428 E 3rd St

Bloomington, IN 47401

(812) 332-4495

http://www.motherbearspizza.com/

Lennie’s  (map it!)

1795 E 10th St

Bloomington, IN 47408

(812) 323-2112

http://www.lenniesgourmetpizza.com/

Nick's English Hut  (map it!)

423 E Kirkwood Ave

Bloomington, IN 47408

(812) 332-4040

http://nicksenglishhut.com/

Kilroy's Bar & Grill  (map it!)

502 E Kirkwood Ave

Bloomington, IN 47401

(812) 339-3006

http://kilroyskirkwood.com/

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