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Official Review by Douglas Wood, Stadium Journey Special Correspondent
The WVU Coliseum opened in 1970 and was last updated in 2004. The WVU Coliseum seats around 14,000. The stadium is a round concrete structure that looks like a giant spaceship that landed in the middle of a parking lot. The building is aging, but is still well maintained.
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The WVU Coliseum has standard stadium fare at reasonable prices. Offerings include subs ($5.50), wraps ($5.50), pepperoni rolls ($5), croissant sandwiches ($5), PB&J ($4), parfait ($4.50), fruit cup ($4), popcorn ($4.50), and chips ($2).
Soft drinks are available for $4.50 in a regular cup, and $5.50 in a larger souvenir-sized cup. Bottled water is $4 for 20 ounces.
There are several food stations in the arena, but lines can get long at halftime, so plan your trip accordingly. There are also freestanding food vendors located in the concourse of the stadium selling frozen lemonade and other such things. The frozen lemonades are $4 for a large and are excellent.
On certain days, there isn't a better place to be for a college basketball fan than the WVU Coliseum. The student second is on its feet throughout the game, and all the adults are wearing Mountaineer apparel. You'll witness numerous fans with face paint, and costume-type displays in the student sections. It is loud throughout the game. After a victory, the students and fans celebrate in an exuberant manner, but respectful of school spirit, waving the state flag and singing along while John Denver plays on the PA system.
West Virginia University is located in Morgantown. There are only a few chain restaurants, hotels, and stores within a short walking distance of WVU Coliseum. Simply put, WVU Coliseum is surrounded by parking lots and academic buildings and not much else. However, downtown Morgantown has seen a renaissance and offers a wide choice of dining and bars. Check out High Street downtown or the Wharf District. The city is worth exploring, but plan on having to drive there from WVU Coliseum.
The fans are enthusiastic and engaged. They cheer for their team and are generally respectful of visiting supporters, although there may be some booing when the opposing team is introduced. The fans seem knowledgeable of the game, although there is some complaining when the refs call fouls against their team.
General parking is $20 at WVU Coliseum. The surrounding streets are not well designed for the crush of traffic during big-time basketball games, so the campus police put up traffic cones to set up lanes into and around the parking lots. The result is long lines of cars and tricky driving. If you get there early you may be able to park for free on the street. Some private businesses and churches nearby also sell parking spaces in their lots. The best bet if you are staying overnight is to find a hotel within walking distance of the stadium and leave your car there. The Hotel M and Convention Center is about ¼ mile from the WVU Coliseum, and costs about $79 a night. It is an older motel, but is clean and offers free breakfast.
Fans may consider using the unique WVU Personal Rapid Transit (PRT) system if traveling downtown. PRT service originates in downtown Morgantown at Walnut and Chestnut streets. Fans use the Engineering Sciences station for closest access to WVU Coliseum. The PRT is reminiscent of the tram systems found in some major airports. Riders enter the station and call for a car, and an individual tram car arrives within 5-10 minutes to take you to your destination. The PRT additionally makes three other stops within the WVU campus. The biggest drawback to the PRT is somewhat limited hours: it runs until 6:30 am to 10:15 pm weekdays, and 9:30 am to 5:00 pm Saturdays and is closed Sunday. It is free for WVU students and faculty, and is $0.50 per trip for the public.
One of my biggest peeves about WVU Coliseum is the restroom access. At both the men's and women's restrooms near the entrance, before, during, and after the games, there are long lines. The restrooms are clean and well maintained, but appear to be insufficient for an arena of this size. Plan your restroom trips accordingly.
Although circular stadiums are no longer fashionable, the layout of WVU Coliseum is such that there is not a bad seat in the house. Paying more will get you a better view of the action, however. When the game is sold out, there are limited choices for tickets for casual fans. Buying tickets on Stubhub or other secondary market sources can be pricey, especially for big games. There will likely be a number of scalpers on the streets leading into the stadium, so last minute purchases could be made, if you are willing to pay. If you can afford it, this is a great game day experience.
Halftime entertainment includes the dance team and a few shooting contests. Promotions during time outs are also fairly limited, but include a few T-shirts lobbed into the stands. The staff is polite and helpful. Overall, this is a great place to watch a college basketball game, particularity when playing another high-ranked team.
Fans with an interest in history should take a walk around the concourse and check out the Jerry West tribute and other displays to West Virginia basketball History.
The WVU Team Shop is located on the main level concourse and has an actual hardwood court floor. The usual assortment of shirts, jackets, and college memorabilia is available here.
This is a great place and atmosphere to watch a college basketball game. Even the cheaper seats give a good view. If you are willing to spend more you will get a better view. Even if you don't have a whole lot to spend, you will not be disappointed with your trip to Morgantown.
Member Review by collegiatestdms
The WVU Coliseum was built in 1970 and was last updated in 2004. The WVU Coliseum seats around 14,000 including 100 extremely tight seats on media row. The WVU Coliseum is mainly a concrete structure that stands out as being unique against the rest of the WVU architecture. The building is starting to show its age in some areas, but seems to be well maintained and should last for years to come.
Member Review by lakersfan on Jan 01, 2012
The WVU Coliseum, built in 1970, is hands down the best arena in the state of West Virginia. It has been the home of the Mountaineers since 1970. At 10.4 million in 1970, WVU has gotten there value.
Food & Beverage
Although nothing special is offered, lines are generally short and the food is of decent quality. Nothing to write home about, but enough to get a three star review.
The Coliseum has an amazing atmosphere. The Pride of West Virginia (the WVU Marching Band) certainly excites the crowds playing Hail West Virginia (WVU fight song) and Take Me Home Country Roads and are very good. The new LED scoreboard which is NBA quality is much better than the previous system. Also new in 2008 was an audio system and lights which were both good for any arena. The fans certainly make it more interesting as they can excite anyone.
The WVU Coliseum is located in the perfect college town atmosphere. Located on the WVU campus the Coliseum isn't surrounded by many fine eateries.
If you say WVU fans don't love their school, you're crazy. The state of West Virginia doesn't have a single major professional sports team so they love their Mountaineers. The fans are always cheering and don't complain about the proper call even if it is against WVU. The Mountaineer Maniacs (WVU Student Section) have been criticized for being too into the game after throwing objects on to the court.
The access to the Coliseum isn't anything special. People park on the side of streets or in the parking lots. If you are not a season ticket holder I would advise against the lots considering it is $20. An interesting way to get to the game is the PRT (Personal Rapid Transit) which to many not familiar with it seems futuristic even though it is from the 1970s.
Return On Investment
As long as you like college basketball you will be walking out the Coliseum smiling. WVU is a major Division 1 school and is in one the best basketball conferences, the Big East.
The friendliness of the staff was definitely a big plus. Also the plaques of WVU legends such as Jerry West and Hot Rod Hundley were a nice feature. Finally the facility is kept very clean. I would go as far to say the floors sparkled.
735-A Chestnut Ridge Rd
Morgantown, WV 26505
132 Pleasant St
Morgantown, WV 26505
227 Chestnut St
Morgantown, WV 26505
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