From the late 1800s until 1937, Arkansas played its home football games at Razorback Field, which was located at the center of campus, near where Mullins Library is today. About 300 fans could watch from a pavilion built near the sidelines.
Arkansas in action against Oklahoma at Razorback Field in 1910.
Football fans in the 1920s were able to park their cars at the edge of the field.
In the 1920s, Arkansas underwent its first major stadium expansion: adding bleachers to the sidelines.
Arkansas playing in front of what appears to be zero fans in 1930. A far cry from today’s team — unless the Hogs are playing Vanderbilt.
A view of Razorback Field from the bleachers of the 300-seat pavilion.
An aerial view of the UA sports complex in 1932-33 includes the football field, Schmidt’s Barn (the Razorbacks’ first basketball arena) and a shot of the Greek Theater.
What fans know today as Razorback Stadium was built in 1937 and originally called University Stadium. Other reports from the era call it Razorback Bowl. The stadium cost $82,000 and sat about 13,000 people. The quarter-mile long track built around the field was used for Razorback track and field meets up until the 1960s. The building at the south end of the east stands was a “half-house with rest quarters for both visiting and home teams,” according to archived reports. There also were “concession shelters” underneath both sets of bleachers.
From 1938-1941, Razorback Stadium went by Bailey Stadium. It was christened after then-Gov. Carl Edward Bailey, the dark-haired fellow in the left corner of the photo. This photo is from the stadium’s dedication.
Looking south in 1940 from the north endonze of Bailey Stadium.
Arkansas tangles with SMU during the disatrous 1941 season. Arkansas won just three game that year and dropped all of its SWC contests.
Razorback Stadium as it looked in the 1950s after expansion. The east and west bleachers were expanded while seats were added to the north end zone embankment as well.
The Razorbacks had their first major sellout in 1954, when No. 4 Arkansas hosted No. 19 Southern Methodist on Nov. 13. Despite losing to SMU, Arkansas still finished as Southwest Conference champions.
An aerial view of Razorback Stadium, circa 1955. At the south end of the stadium is Barnhill Field House (later Barnhill Arena), which opened a year earlier.
By the 1960s, Razorback Stadium had expanded its south end zone. Note the proximity of the fans to Barnhill Field House (later Barnhill Arena)
Razorback Stadium only held 30,000 fans in 1962 — nearly 50,000 less than it does today — yet parking was still a nightmare.
Arkansas in action during the 1964 season. At that time, Razorback Stadium’s construction allowed fans a spectacular view of the Ozarks. Meanwhile, residents of Reid Hall could watch games from their dorm room.
The north end zone embankment was a popular place in the 1960s to watch the Hogs.
The stadium expanded again in the mid-1960s. To keep fans shuffling in and out of their seats at optimal speeds, ramps were added to the exterior of the east and west bleachers.
A gloomy Razorback Stadium in spring 1966.
Arkansas fans supporting the Hogs during a game in the mid 1960s.
Looking south on a desolate stretch of Razorback Road.
Razorback Stadium hosted a slew of non-football related events, some of which weren’t athletic in nature. Here graudtes gather for commentence in June 1967.
Like many stadiums of its era, Razorback Stadium was built with a track around the football field.
In 1975, Arkansas built an athletic complex into the hill in the north end zone. It was later renamed the Broyles Athletic Center in honor of retired football coach Frank Broyles.
Razorback Stadium from a quasi-bird’s eye view in the late 1970s. The “half-house” — the white, square building adjacent the east side bleachers — was nearly 50 years old, a relic from the stadium’s original construction.
A view of Razorback Stadium from the press box circa the late 1970s.
A unique angle of Razorback Stadium in the late 1970s. Behind Arkansas Fieldhouse (now Barnhill Arena) was the newly-constructed Pomfret Hall. Adjacent to that was George Cole Field, where the Razorbacks played baseball. It was one of the few baseball facilities in the country that used AstroTurf.
Razorback Stadium on Oct. 17, 1981. That afternoon, the Hogs trounced their bitter rival, No. 1 Texas, by a score of 42-11. The 31-point disparity set the record for the second largest margin of victory for Arkansas in its longtime rivalry with the Longhorns.
A view of Razorback Stadium’s north end zone during the telecast of the Arkansas-Texas game in 1985. In the 1980s, Razorback Stadium held more people (52,000) than the population of Fayetteville (36,000).
In the summer of 1985, Arkansas added a second deck to the west side bleachers. The luxury skyboxes and additional seating swelled capacity to over 50,000. Fans in the nosebleed sections of the upper deck also got a scenic view of the Boston Mountains as a condolence.
A view of Razorback Stadium looking north in the late 1980s. Other campus landmarks of note in this picture include the HPER, just poking into the photo at the bottom right corner, and Fulbright Hall, located just north of The Pit. The dorm was named after Roberta Fulbright, the mother of Arkansas alumni and former U.S. Sen. William Fulbright. It was demolished to make room for the Northwest Quad.
A magnified view of Razorback Stadium in the late 1980s. It appears that the “half-house” had been demolished, or at least remodeled, by then.
A view of Razorback Stadium’s expanded second deck in the late 1980s. The current student union (bottom left) still had its original facade then.
A view of Razorback Stadium from the south end zone bleachers circa the late 1980s.
Razorback Stadium from the north end zone in the late 1980s. Barnhill Arena had been remodled by then, and the HPER had been completed as well.
The Razorbacks were one of the first teams to install AstroTurf in their football stadium, laying down the outdoor carpet in the late 1960s.
A peek inside Razorback Stadium from Stadium Drive circa the late 1980s.
In the summer of 1988, Arkansas added lights to Razorback Stadium. Prior to that season, the Hogs played all of their home night games in Little Rock at War Memorial Stadium. The Razorbacks won their first night game in Fayetteville, beating Baylor 19-10 on Nov. 11, 1989.
An aerial view of Razorback stadium after Arkansas added lights. The photo was probably taken in the early 1990s.
Razorback Stadium underwent major renovations the late 1990s. The university added a second deck to the east bleachers and closed the south end zone. Construction began in 1998 and lasted nearly three years, but increased seating capacity in upwards of 70,000.
A view of the east bleacher’s upper deck in the early 2000s.
Hoping to lure fans to the south end zone, a massive video scoreboard was erected over the Broyles Athletic Center..
The new video board, installed in time for the 2000 season, measures 30×107 feet. At one time, it was the largest LED scoreboard of any stadium in the country. Legend says you can see it from space.
The renovation project also allowed for Razorback Stadium to refurbish its exterior. Funds were alloted to upgrade practicie facilities as well, and the Willard and Pat Walker Pavilion, seen directly south of the stadium, was built in 1998.
A typical game-day scene at Razorback Stadium.
In late 2011, university officials proposed closing the north end zone of Razorback Stadium. The plan would add approximately 5,000 seats, pushing total capacity over 80,000. Cost estimates ranged between $78-95 million.
Another rendering of the proposed stadium expansion in the north end zone. In January 2016, athletics officials at UA sought approval from the university’s Board of Trustees to begin the preliminary phase of the project. The reported price tag was $160 million.
Razorback Stadium’s north end zone as it appears in another rendering released by the university after expansion was approved in June 2016.
Razorback Stadium celebrated its 75th season as Arkansas’ primary football home in 2013. This gallery showcases the stadium’s evolution over the past seven decades.
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