CHARLOTTE, N.C. - The Charlotte 49ers unveiled the naming of its football stadium on Tuesday morning.
UNC Charlotte chancellor Dr. Philip Dubois and 49ers director of Athletics Judy Rose announced the stadium will be named after Carolina Panthers owner and be called Jerry Richardson Stadium.
Richardson committed $10 million to name the stadium in perpetuity.
“Today, we take another huge step,” Dubois said. “Jerry knows that football can bring the students and the city of Charlotte together and he wanted to be among the first to stand up and state, ‘This program is important to me’.”
“The role UNC Charlotte plays in our community cannot be underestimated and its profile will only continue to grow,” Richardson said. “The addition of football is another step in that growth and it is important that our community supports the school and its programs. The potential of both the university and its athletic department is unlimited and I am pleased to be able to participate in their development. My personal experiences from football have been very beneficial and this is a way to support both the future of the game and the university.”
In addition to the $10 million dollar gift to name the stadium, Richardson surprised the university Tuesday by announcing an additional gift -- an endowed football scholarship in honor of his son, Jon Richardson.
The Charlotte 49ers completed construction on the stadium in October of 2012. The football team, which will compete in its inaugural season this fall, began practice in the stadium at that time.
The 15,300 seat stadium is located in the university’s CRI campus, near the entrance of Highway 29.