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A new state-of-the-art video board will bring extra excitement to Sam Houston’s 11th season at the Bearkat Softball Complex.

New boards for the University’s football, track and field, volleyball, basketball and softball facilities were installed during the summer and fall of 2015.

Jim and Tonya Ferris and Ann Wismer and Michael Landolt of the Wismer Distributing Company in Baytown, and Kurt Stevenson of Stevenson Beer Distributing Company in Trinity and Anheuser-Busch, have partnered with the SHSU Department of Athletics to make possible the addition of the video scoreboards.

 “We greatly appreciate this generous gift in support of the Bearkat football, track and field, basketball, volleyball and softball programs,” said SHSU President Dana G. Hoyt.  “The new boards will add a new dimension of entertainment, excitement and energy for our fans on game days.”

The softball video board is 23 feet, 11.2 inches tall by 27 feet wide and includes a video screen. All three of the new boards will feature sponsor advertising opportunities to provide additional revenue for the Bearkat athletic program.

 “The new boards are first-class video boards for first-class athletic programs,” said Jim Ferris, class of ’69.  “It is an honor to participate in such a major, positive upgrade for the university.”

Stevenson also attended SHSU in the late 1980s.  He has been a long-time supporter through his involvement with a number of programs.

 “It’s exciting for us to be able to give back to the university,” Stevenson said. “Both my mother and late father, Carol and Robb Stevenson, are Sam Houston graduates and have been actively involved with athletics, the Rodeo Club and the alumni association.”

 “Sam Houston State University is fortunate to have wonderful alumni and friends who give at such a high level to help this university succeed,” Bobby Williams, director of athletics, said.  “Major projects of this type take a total team effort. We are very appreciative of our partnership with our university president, university advancement, the athletic department, and especially the individuals who have made this possible with their generous gifts.”

SHSU stands as the only athletic program to have earned five Southland Conference Commissioner’s Cups, symbolic of the league’s men’s and women’s all-sports championship. The Bearkats’ football, track and field, men’s and women’s basketball, volleyball and softball programs have combined to win eight league championships since 2010.

The success of Sam Houston’s athletic programs has brought nationwide attention to the university, with more than 50 Bearkat athletic events in the past four years being telecast on the ESPN family of networks.

The Bearkat Softball Complex opened in 2006. The combined baseball and softball facility cost $5.5 million and gave the Sam Houston softball program a permanent home after playing games at various sites including the intramural fields, Josey Park, Kate Barr Ross Park and the old Bearkat softball field on Avenue M.

Sam Houston has hosted the Southland Conference softball tournament twice, winning the event in 2007 to advance to the NCAA Division I national championships for the first time in school history.

The Bearkats own a record of 134 victories and only 79 losses at the Softball Complex during the first decade in the facility.

Alumni, fans and friends of Sam Houston can help the university continue to build champions by joining the team as Bearkat Champions. The Bearkat Champions Fund is the sole fundraising arm for the Sam Houston athletic department. The fund allows supporters the opportunity to help provide each Bearkat student-athlete an opportunity for a quality academic and athletic experience through charitable contributions.

Learn more about Becoming a Bearkat Champion Now