AUSTIN, Texas (KXAN) — The University of Texas at Austin’s new basketball arena and events center will be named Moody Center in honor of a $130 million grant to UT from the Moody Foundation, according to a press release from University of Texas athletics.
The release says the grant is the largest, single gift from a foundation in the university’s history.
A groundbreaking ceremony for the Moody Center will be held Dec. 3 at the site of the arena south of Mike A. Myers Stadium. The Moody Center is expected to open in 2022.
“The Moody Center signals a new era for UT and Austin, providing fans and citizens the world-class experience they deserve in the world-class city we call home,” said Ross Moody, trustee of the Moody Foundation and chairman and CEO of National Western Life Group. “The Moody Foundation has a long history with this prestigious university and this wonderful community. We couldn’t be happier to partner with UT in this transformative gift to benefit future generations of Longhorns and Texans.”
Texas approved plans for a new, on-campus basketball arena last December to replace the Frank Erwin Center as the home for Texas hoops.
Renderings for the Moody Center
“When the Moody Center opens, it will be the finest college basketball arena in the country, hands down, as well as an unbelievable concert and entertainment venue for the entire city of Austin,” Vice President and Director of Athletics Chris Del Conte said. “We cannot thank the Moody family and the Moody Foundation enough for their historic gift to The University of Texas.”
The arena will hold 10,000 seats “to provide an intimate, state-of-the-art men’s and women’s Longhorn basketball fan experience and feature student seating surrounding the court,” the release says. The facility will be capable of expanding out to 15,000 seats for concerts and shows.
“This incredible gift by the Moody family and the Moody Foundation is an absolute game-changer. It will positively impact our players, students and fans for decades to come. Our entire program is tremendously grateful. We are very much looking forward to seeing the Moody Center become a reality over the next few years,” Texas men’s basketball coach Shaka Smart said.
“This gift will change the landscape of Texas Basketball. On behalf of our program, I want to thank the Moody Foundation and the Moody family for their unbelievable contribution that will make this all possible. The Moody Center will be transformative for not only our student-athletes, but for our student body and our fans. This state-of-the-art arena located in the heart of campus will provide one of the best experiences in college basketball for our students, our alumni and our supporters,” women’s basketball coach Karen Aston said.