- Matt Fiedler
William H. Detrick Gymnasium – Central Connecticut State Blue Devils
Photos by Matt Fielder, Stadium Journey
Stadium Info FANFARE Score: 2.71
William H. Detrick Gymnasium 1615 Stanley St New Britain, CT 06053
Central Connecticut State Blue Devils website
William H. Detrick Gymnasium website
Year Opened: 1965
Devil of a Time
Detrick Gymnasium was built in 1965 as the home of the Central Connecticut State Blue Devils. There have been several rounds of renovations to improve the gym. In 2005 they received a new court, and in 2019 a new video board was installed. The gym is named for Bill Detrick who was the head coach at Central Connecticut State for 29 years and is the school’s winningest coach.
The team has been at the Division One level since 1986. Before that point, they were a Division Two school. The basketball team has hit some tough times as they have not had a winning season since the 2010-2011 season. The current coach is former NBA player Donyell Marshall, who spent 15 years in the league.
Food & Beverage 1
The only food option at Detrick Gymnasium is a small concession stand that sells the stadium basics. You can find hot dogs, pizza, pretzels, candy, and soft drinks. There is no alcohol sold at this on-campus venue. If you want to grab a bite to eat, it is recommended that you grab something before or after the game at one of the local restaurants.
Visiting fans may be pleasantly surprised by the atmosphere at Detrick Gymnasium. The fan base won’t be mistaken for Kansas or Duke, but it is a very solid game-day atmosphere. The dance team and the cheerleaders are very skilled and do a good job of getting the crowd amped up.
The PA announcer does a good job getting the crowd pumped up as well with different contests and giveaways which are a staple of college basketball games. Overall, this is a fairly typical atmosphere for a small gym environment. Some may prefer this type of atmosphere to a large arena because you’re right on top of the action and feel closer to the game.
Central Connecticut State is located in New Britain, Connecticut which is just southwest of Hartford. The university is fairly large and houses all of its athletic facilities on campus. That makes it very easy for students to attend games and keeps everything centralized. The area around the campus is safe for fans to walk around before and after games.
There are a few food options on and around campus but nothing special. There are plenty of great food options within driving distance though. Hartford is not far from Central Connecticut State. Hartford has some exceptional food. You can find Italian, Mexican, BBQ, and traditional American classics as well. If you enjoy BBQ, Stadium Journey highly recommends Bear’s BBQ in Hartford. It’s just a 15-minute drive from campus and has the traditional BBQ staples as well as things like Poutine and Cornbread topped with Mac & Cheese.
The deck is stacked against Central Connecticut State. It’s not a large basketball program and gets dwarfed by UCONN and all the success they have had in the past. It’s especially tough on days when Central Connecticut is at home and UCONN is playing at the XL Center in Hartford.
The fans who come to the games do their best to try and get the Blue Devils going. They are very respectful of opposing fans. At the game of this review, there were no apparent issues with any of the opposition fans. The fans are engaged when they are supposed to be and don’t sit on their hands.
Central Connecticut State is located in a very easy spot to get to. The campus is right off route 9 and can be accessed via I-84 and I-91. If you take route 9 you will pass directly by the campus. There is plenty of parking and garages on campus and some are located very close to Detrick Gymnasium. Be advised that Detrick Gymnasium is not a standalone structure and is located within Kaiser Hall.
Once inside Kaiser Hall, you will find Detrick Gymnasium to your left. The lobby contains souvenirs and a concession stand. The lobby is wide and easy to navigate. The seats all offer great views of the court and there are no obstructed views.
Return on Investment 5
Going to a Central Connecticut State basketball game is an experience that will be very easy on your wallet. Tickets range from $12 for floor seats to $5 for seniors and kids. Students all get in free with their student ID. When you factor in the cheap concession prices and the free parking, you could be looking at spending under $20 to see Division One basketball. That’s a heck of a deal in this day in age.
One star goes to the new video board that was installed for the 2019-2020 season. The board is crystal clear and offers all the necessary info that fans need.
Central Connecticut State is in a tough spot. They have to contend with UCONN, which is not an easy task. However, they have carved out a nice niche for themselves in the basketball landscape of Connecticut. They have very nice facilities that they have improved over the years, and they offer an affordable Division One basketball experience. Detrick Gymnasium is a solid spot for some quality basketball if you find yourself in the area.