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Official Review by Michael Davis, Stadium Journey Regional Correspondent
The Ed and Rae Schollmaier Arena is located on the campus of Texas Christian University in the area known as the Daniel-Meyer Athletic Complex. With a $72 million renovation in 2015, TCU’s basketball arena has received a major upgrade and a new name (formerly the Daniel-Meyer Complex or DMC). The original arena opened in 1961 with a capacity of 7,000 seats and today’s renovation still has the capacity listed as the conference’s smallest arena with 6,800 seating. The arena is named after Ed & Rae Schollmaier for their donating the lead gift of $10 million which became the building block for the renovation. The renovation took place following the 2013-14 season, forcing the TCU basketball program to play their 2014-15 home games at a local Fort Worth high school activity center. Austin Commercial was the General Contractor for the renovation which makes sense since they were the General Contractor for the nearby Amon G Carter Stadium renovation. The new arena’s facade compliments the football stadium along with the rest of the TCU campus. The interior has a lower playing surface providing seating to be closer to the court. The concourse was expanded along with improved bathroom facilities. A new food court and courtside lounge were added to improve fan experience, including the TCU Athletics Hall of Fame. The facility also received new locker rooms and a video board, offices, and a larger ticket office to support TCU athletics.
The FANFARE scale is our metric device for rating each stadium experience. It covers the following:
Each area is rated from 0 to 5 stars with 5 being the best. The overall composite score is the "FANFARE Score".
The renovation improved the concessions stands by bringing recent technology such as the high definition menu monitors to each concession stand along with a food court area. The food court area holds three concession stands, tables to grab a quick bite, and it looks out towards the TCU football practice fields.
The arena has local restaurants within the different concession stands such as Buffalo Bros serving $5 dollars pizza slices or $7 wings. Another local restaurant is Bobby Fajitas serving either three tamales, cheese quesadillas, or regular fajitas for $4 but if you want to go big, there is the $8 fajita nachos. Chick-fil-A serves a regular chicken sandwich ($6) or a $10 combo with sandwich, chips and a warm cookie.
The traditional concession stands are still an option serving a cheeseburger w/fries or chicken finger basket for $7 while hot dogs, French fries, and peanuts each cost $4. Large popcorn, loaded fries, pretzels, nachos, and candy range between $3.50 and $5. There are a few concessions carts around the concourse which serve Dippin' Dots at $4 a cup or $6 King Korn gourmet popcorn.
The general game day experience has improved with the renovations and the addition of the new TCU Athletics Hall of Fame. As you walk through the beautiful new exterior facade into a well-lit lobby, to the left is the hall of fame which immediately catches a fan's eye while your ticket is scanned. It is well worth your time to arrive early and read about the rich sports history of TCU athletics.
The concourse being wider allows for easy access to your seating area or food court. Once you walk through your section tunnel, you'll see the old circular roof structure that was built in the 1960's, however, the arena seems more intimate with the seating now extending to the court. The court has a new design and the new video board speaks with the LED lighting that you have at a big time college basketball game.
The TCU band and student section, "Purple Haze," is located on the baseline opposite from where the participating teams enter the court. The TCU spirit squads are split along the baseline and include the cheer team and the TCU Showgirls. The mascot, Superfrog, is visible throughout the arena taking photos with fans and showing the Horned Frog hand sign.
Just like any college sport, the atmosphere gets better if the home team is winning, so when the basketball program starts winning on a consistent basis, the arena has the potential to be a tough place to play. Overall, the atmosphere is good and entertaining for a college basketball game.
The Texas Christian University campus is located about four miles from downtown Fort Worth. Schollmaier Arena is right on the campus next to Amon Carter Stadium. The campus is divided by University Drive which is the location of a few restaurants popular for serving the TCU students.
Buffalo Bros is a sponsor of TCU athletics and a popular place for all TCU fans. Fans flock to this local sports bar which serves New York Style wings, pizza, and subs. Dutch's Hamburgers, a burger and beer café, facing the Texas Christian University campus is another great place to eat before attending a TCU event. Dutch's namesake is Leo "Dutch" Meyer, a TCU grad who became the most successful football coach in football history.
There are several tourist attractions in Fort Worth near the TCU campus. Fort Worth Zoo on University Drive near the Colonial Country Club is a good place for families. The Cultural District, which has several museums, including the world famous Kimbell Art Museum, along with the Will Rogers Memorial Center, home of the annual Fort Worth Stock Show and Rodeo are within five miles of campus. A trip to the Fort Worth Stockyards is a must when visiting the Fort Worth area and is just a few miles on the other side of downtown. There you can see the famous "World's Largest Honky Tonk" Billy Bob's Texas, home for live music from national recording acts, a large dance floor, pool tables, mechanical bull rides, and live bull riding on the weekends. The stockyards have a few steak houses that are well worth the visit and then there is a local Tex-Mex favorite, Joe T. Garcia's but be prepared for long lines.
Two good options for lodging while in town for a TCU basketball game include the Sheraton Fort Worth Hotel and Spa at 1701 Commerce or the W hotel in downtown Fort Worth.
Texas Christian University is a private school with an undergraduate enrollment around 8,500 so the Horned Frog fans are a close knit community making their support genuine. Most fans are polite, friendly, and just love their Horned Frogs. However, a TCU basketball fan seems to be harder to find than the popular TCU football or baseball fan. The TCU students try to create a home court advantage along the baseline next to the band, but the non-student TCU fans are relatively a reserved bunch, showing support wearing the school colors, but not much in the vocal area. The season ticket holders seem to be a lot of the faculty and staff from my conversations and when Kansas visits Fort Worth, those tickets are sold at a high rate even covering the cost of the season tickets in one game. If you want to hear the ire, Rock Chalk Jayhawk, KU call outside of Allen Fieldhouse, visit Schollmaier Arena for the Kansas game, seems to be Allen Fieldhouse South.
The arena is located on the campus of TCU, just a few miles from Fort Worth. Although near the city, the campus is set back in an old neighborhood. The parking lots immediately around the arena are reserved and a pass is required to park close to the arena. However, free parking is available on the north side of the football stadium, as a new parking garage was recently built, so there is plenty of parking in that area. However, the negative is when leaving after the game, as the majority of the parking is located there, be prepared for wait time. The walk is very short as the arena is on the south end of the stadium.
There are plenty of taxis if you are at a hotel downtown, but the cab fare can be as high as $25 depending on the traffic waiting time. The cabs are located at the corner of Bellaire Drive North and Stadium Drive in front of the TCU Admissions building.
One of the biggest improvements from the recent renovation is access with a widened concourse and improved bathrooms facilities. The signage around the arena is plentiful and helpful in finding the appropriate seating section.
TCU announced new security measures at the arena in December 2015 which impact fans making their way out to a TCU basketball game.
TCU basketball prices are determined by the quality of the opponent. The non-conference games are cheaper than the conference games, as not many big time college basketball programs visit Fort Worth. The conference game prices depend on the opponent with the majority of the games running $20 to $30 dollars. The headliner of the TCU home schedule is Kansas every year and TCU lets you know as the price skyrockets to $40. Overall, compared to other Big 12 schools or even the cross Metroplex rival SMU, tickets are relatively inexpensive. A game at TCU remains a great option for college basketball fans to see Big 12 basketball.
-The renovation of the arena itself bringing the arena up to the rest of the beautiful campus instead of an eyesore.
-The mascot, Super Frog, TCU spirit squad, along with the TCU Showgirls performances during the games.
-The TCU Hall of Fame located in the main lobby showing the success of TCU Athletics.
The renovation has extremely changed the experience of attending a TCU basketball game. This type of renovation is usually done after the program has had success such as the renovations done to Amon G Carter Stadium. Hopefully, this new renovation will attract top basketball talent to Fort Worth. However, even if it doesn't TCU basketball has a wonderful new place to call home.
Member Review by EGrant on Mar 15, 2013
As the TCU Horned Frogs make the transition to the Big 12 from the Mountain West, there’s a good chance their facilities are going to have to be renovated. Amon G. Carter Stadium has already undergone that process and came out looking like one of the best football stadiums in the country, but Daniel-Meyer Coliseum and the basketball teams haven’t yet had to clear out for a remodel.
Lucky for them, that’s not such a bad thing.
Opened in 1961, Daniel-Meyer Coliseum seats 7,156 people for basketball games in Ft. Worth, Texas, and has been the home for the Horned Frog ever since the inaugural game against Centenary over 50 years ago.
Named after former basketball coach Dutch Meyer and board member Milton Daniel, the Coliseum hasn’t changed much since opening its doors at the turn of the 1960s. The building has come to be known as the “DMC” by local patrons and alumni, and continues to be a staple of both the old and the new as it sits less than 20 yards from Amon G. Carter Stadium.
A lounge was added in 2002, and numerous other minor renovations have added things like a state-of-the-art LED scoreboard, a new lighting system and a better sound system.
While it appears the coliseum is here to stay, some don’t think it is up to par with the rest of the competition. Namely, Stefan Stevenson of the Ft. Worth Star-Telegram, feels that TCU will have to address what is the third-oldest and smallest-capacity arena in the Big 12 at some point in the near future.
All that being said, the Horned Frogs can still fill seats in DMC and provide patrons with a quality experience on a night-to-night basis. Here’s a look at what makes Daniel-Meyer Coliseum a popular attraction for college basketball fans in North Texas.
Member Review by pderrick on Nov 19, 2013
Just visited Daniel-Meyer and compared to the rest of the Big 12 it definitely lacks however it is still not that bad of a venue. The fans are not much more than mediocre but tickets are cheap.
Member Review by spschmidt on Feb 03, 2014
It was time. That was the consensus with the powers that be at TCU when determining the fate of Daniel-Meyer Coliseum.
Given that football was the vehicle that drove the Horned Frogs to a Big 12 invitation, it was only natural that Amon G. Carter Stadium received a $164 million makeover to make it one of the premiere facilities in the conference. With those touches completed in 2012, the school is now focusing its attention on the small circular building that shares a walkway to the stadium’s southeast corner.
The arena opened in 1961 as part of string of other cookie cutter spaceship-like structures that still can be found in major college basketball (see Illinois, Wyoming and West Virginia for starters). At a little over 7,000 seats, it is the conference’s smallest arena.
Following the 2012-13 season, plans were unveiled for a $45 million renovation to help modernize the facilities with such touches as new locker rooms for players and wider concourses and increased courtside seating for fans.
All enhancements will be welcomed when the Horned Frogs return to the DMC in 2015. Still in its current state, an evening at the arena can be an affordable, intimate and enjoyable experience.
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