STILLWATER – The transformation of the football facility at Oklahoma State has one man’s name written all over it — figuratively and literally — Boone Pickens Stadium.
And it won’t go forgotten by the Cowboys who play there, present or future.
During his first tour of the now complete $184 million west end zone project, Pickens was directed to an honorary place among the team, a locker complete with jersey — No. 1 — and helmet, right alongside the guys he’s helped make so much more comfortable.
"Once you start on your eligibility, you have to finish in five years,” said Pickens, an alum and one-time basketball player under the legendary Henry Iba. "So I don’t have any eligibility left.”
Still, Pickens’ impact continues.
Monday, for the first time, Pickens toured the finished west end zone. He liked what he saw of the final piece in what began as a seven-year plan, the last phase considered the crown jewel of the stadium’s overall $286 million renovation and expansion.
Not that Pickens is resting now.
"We know what our mission is,” Pickens said. "And we’re going forward on our mission. My mission now is to help get that football stadium filled. It means so much to me.
"The team can be a lot better if the stadium’s full. And the stadium is what runs our athletic budget. So we have to have that stadium full.”