JACKSONVILLE, Fla. -- Northwestern officials will have extra ammunition to fire up fans and alums at a New Year’s Eve pep rally in Jacksonville for the Jan. 1 Gator Bowl.
The Tribune has learned that the school will announce that it has raised more than $55 million toward the $220 million on-campus lakefront facility that will benefit nearly all Northwestern students, especially those who play football.
University President Morton Schapiro said Saturday in an interview that he had expected it to take a year to raise as much as $55 million.
Instead it has been three months since the school announced it would build a facility with Chicago skyline views that can host everything from indoor soccer and lacrosse matches to New Student Convocation and Dance Marathon to intramural competitions and football practices.
It will be named the Ryan Fieldhouse in honor of the lead gift from Pat and Shirley Ryan, whose name also adorns Ryan Field and Welsh-Ryan Arena. The indoor field will be named Wilson Field for Stephen and Susan Wilson, who contributed a “significant” gift. All four are graduates of Northwestern.
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