Rocky Miller Park
NORTHWESTERN UNIVERSITY IS POISED TO SECURE ITS PLACE AMONG THE WORLD’S GREAT UNIVERSITIES, AND ATHLETICS IS A KEY PART OF THE UNIVERSITY’S STRATEGIC VISION.
Wildcats baseball represents a nearly 150-year tradition, serving as a launch pad for Major League players as well as leaders in business, philanthropy, and other pursuits. Thanks to a landmark commitment, Northwestern baseball is now poised to enter an exciting new era by investing in a $10 - 11 million, state-of-the-art renovation of its facilities.
In June 2013, Northwestern alumni and longtime benefactors Richard and Roxy Pepper announced their pledge of $5 million as a matching challenge to raise the remaining dollars needed to renovate Rocky Miller Park. If the University is able to raise this additional amount, the Peppers will provide their pledged $5 million for the proposed renovations.
The baseball stadium now known as Rocky Miller Park has been home to Wildcats Baseball since 1943. The Peppers named the park in honor of Roxy’s late father, J. Roscoe Miller, president of Northwestern University from 1949 to 1970.
The park last underwent renovations in 1983, providing it with 600 stadium seats, a press box, and an electronic scoreboard. Meanwhile, in recent years, more than half of Big Ten schools have either built or renovated baseball stadiums or have begun fundraising or construction. Our rivals grasp the critical role of modernized facilities in keeping a program viable. Now we can seize the opportunity to bring new energy and visibility to Northwestern baseball by renovating our 30-year-old park.
This new vision for the park will not just provide Northwestern with a premier facility compared to the rest of the Big Ten, it will bring Wildcats Baseball into the upper echelon of college baseball stadiums across the country, increasing our relevance nationally.
With the Peppers’ unprecedented investment in Northwestern’s baseball program, we now look to our most dedicated and visionary supporters to help us meet the challenge.
Proposed improvements to Rocky Miller Park would add:
A new home clubhouse and locker room that will provide first-class amenities for the Wildcats on site (currently, the home locker room is located in the south end of Ryan Field, approximately 250 yards away from Rocky Miller Park)
A player lounge and team meeting room for Northwestern baseball student-athletes
A new artificial turf field which will greatly reduce the number of practices and games that are impacted by inclement weather
An upgraded press box accommodating print, TV, and radio media
New chair back seats, concessions, and other fan amenities
A new, state-of-the-art scoreboard
|Stadium||$5 million (Reserved)|
|Field||$2 million (Reserved)|
|Press Box||$1.5 million|
|Northwestern Clubhouse||$1.5 million|
|Entry Plaza||$1 million|
|Northwestern Dugout||$750,000 (Reserved)|
|Northwestern Player Lounge/Meeting Room||$500,000 (Reserved)|
|Bullpens (2)||$250,000 each|
|On-deck Circles (2)||$250,000 each|
Tradition Meets New Momentum
Baseball first became an organized team sport at Northwestern in the 1870s, making the tradition of Wildcats baseball nearly as old as the game itself.
The program has produced exceptional athletes, including three-sport legend Otto Graham (SESP44), New York Yankees manager Joe Girardi (McC86), Major League All-Star Mark Loretta (SESP93), 2012 World Series Champion George Kontos (WCAS07), and J.A. Happ, 2009 Sporting News NL Rookie of the Year.
We are witnessing a surging prominence for Wildcats Athletics as a whole — spurred by victories on the field, a virtually peerless reputation for academic success, and greater visibility for our programs. One notable example is a new, multi-year reciprocal marketing agreement with the Chicago Cubs. Through this partnership, truly the first of its kind, the baseball team has already enjoyed the spotlight at Wrigley Field, shutting out Michigan in a game under the lights in April 2013.
“Providing our players, coaches, and fans with a beautiful, modernized facility will make a big statement about Northwestern’s commitment to the baseball program.”VICE PRESIDENT FOR ATHLETICS AND RECREATION JIM PHILLIPS