College Stadium Review: Gaylord Family Oklahoma Memorial Stadium

The Sooners of Oklahoma are a football team with a history and tons of tradition. This is reflected in their stadium, which first opened way back in 1923. The Gaylord Family Oklahoma Memorial Stadium has been renovated and expanded numerous times in its history, and now seats 82,112 fans when full, which is certain to be for near every game. Even as old as this facility is, it is the 15th largest college stadium in America, and the second largest in the Big-12 Conference. The renovations completed in recent years have included a new and more technologically innovative video screen new restroom, and more concession offerings.

Graphic via nflrt


Speaking of concessions, the Gaylord Family Oklahoma Memorial Stadium gets very high marks for its food and beverage options. The variety is what strikes most fans coming to this venue, as there seems to be something that will satisfy the hunger pangs of any person, young and old alike. Concession stands are located all over the stadium, so the wait is never really a complaint. Each of the stands that serve nachos, jalapeno sausages, spicy brats, candy, foot long corn dogs, and various coca cola beverage products are all run by nonprofit organizations. This is one of the features of Gaylord Family Oklahoma Memorial Stadium that many seem to appreciate, and that is the subtle ways that it strives to give back to the community of Norman, Oklahoma. There are many other food establishments located throughout the vast stadium, including the famous ‘Mackdaddy Onion Burgers’, so if you have not had one of those, you should consider that experience.
The atmosphere at a Sooners game is top notch. The fans are really engaged throughout the game, and Oklahoma plays host to some of the biggest and most well known teams in collegiate football. The marching band is internationally recognized, and they work hard at keeping the crowd involved in all aspects of the game. The mascot is unique and engaging as well, so in short, there is no shortage of things to watch during the game, even when the action on the field is on a momentary pause. Even the neighborhood surrounding Gaylord Family Oklahoma Memorial Stadium is something special. Fans can easily arrive early and have plenty to do. There are eating establishments within easy walking distance, and out of town visitors should be more than happy with the choice of hotel offered in the immediate vicinity.
One of the downsides to Gaylord Family Oklahoma Memorial Stadium is its age. Even with the renovations, there simply appears to hiding the fact that the venue is 90 years old. An example would be the restrooms. While they are certainly clean, they could certainly use updating, as they still use communal facilities in the men’s restrooms, which many of the younger generation might not even be aware exist until attending an Oklahoma Sooners football game. That aside, you are there to watch a football game, and the quality product that is one the field year in and year out, coupled with the lively atmosphere and great opponents, make Norman a great stop on the college football calendar.
Graphic via stadiumbleachers

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