GAME ONE ANOMALIES
- 108 degree weather was highly unusual and close to unbearable. It was reported that as many as 200 attendees sought heat-related medical attention.
- Limited shaded area was concerning. In available spaces, people sat on the ground, in the stairwells, on planters, or each other.
- Restroom faucets poured hot water.
- There were not enough trash receptacles and mountains of water bottles, initially.
- After the second half, there was no ice. Many attendees paid big bucks for drinks that were served warm.
- Heat-related trauma rattled on-site first responders and paramedics.
- Referees were mostly inaudible due to temporary microphone issues.
SNAPDRAGON STADIUM PROS
- Stadium Size and Field Proximity – San Diego State will finally be able to sell out the stadium to create a fantastic gameday presence at home. There were over 34,000 individuals in attendance for the debut, which was an excellent start.
- Great Selection of Stadium Concessions – Even if you didn’t pay thousands of dollars to enter the VIP venues, plenty of signature San Diego food stands offered excellent stadium fare, and every kind of beer imaginable is available.
- Styling and Decor – Snapdragon Stadium is, when you get right down to it, pretty sexy. Styling, architecture, murals, lighting and signage has been done very well, and the stadium has signature San Diego curb appeal.
- Great Student Section – Aztecs are notorious for partying and for nationally famous student fan base, The Show. Student sections have railings in front of each row of seats to prevent injury by falling and for safety during games.
- Scoreboards and Ribbon Boards – Ever present are informative UHD screens. You’ll find two amazing scoreboards at the Southeast and Northwest corners; dazzling ribbon boards and numerous UHD TV’s below upper decks.
- Sound System – The referee microphones were not fully operational during game one, but music in the stadium was super-high quality. There was no audible stadium echo and this will make for an awesome atmosphere.
- Great Venue for Tailgating – There were so many tailgaters, it’s possible 25% never entered the stadium.
- “Easter Eggs” Throughout The Stadium – You will find remnants of San Diego Stadium throughout Snapdragon: Art murals, famous phrases from Aztec greats, statues, and other unique San Diego mementos, all of which make exploring the stadium fun.
- Prestige – After decades of being guests or co-inhabitants of other sports clubs’ venues, Snapdragon Stadium is built by SDSU, for SDSU, and owned by SDSU. Even the construction firm is run by SDSU alumni. This is the Aztecs’ domain, and it dignifies the 100-year-old football organization.
SNAPDRAGON STADIUM CON’S
- Stadium Traffic – It will be critically important for San Diego State and the City of San Diego to recognize the importance of rapid entry and exit of the stadium, if necessary by increasing the number of entrances, along with the number of lanes on roadways feeding in and out of the stadium. This needs to be solved.
- Ticket and Concessions Prices – Some people can overpay, grin and bear it, but Snapdragon is cost prohibitive for some fans and families. $15 beers should be reserved for SoFi Stadium up in Inglewood, not a college venue. $10 sodas are rarely found anywhere else, too, and the cost for food at Snapdragon is nuts. The SDSU team store also features t-shirts at $40 apiece, but none of this broaches ticket prices. Going to the first game at Snapdragon was like attending a New York Yankees playoff game.
- Shade And Foul Weather Relief – Fans might go decades before enduring 108-degree weather again but, in case of a downpour, lightning, or another future heat wave, the stadium will face a similar problem of people clamoring for cover. Without enough cover, alterations must be considered.
- Restrooms – The restrooms are, in some parts of the stadium, undersized for the number of people. This is problematic during high attendance situations.
- Membership Required For Indoor Bars and Clubs – This isn’t unique to Snapdragon Stadium, but it’s displeasing. Big dollars have to be paid to be a club member, and for out-of-state Aztec alumni, that setup just doesn’t work.
- Stadium Communications – General information for stadium goers needs to improve so fans can better understand logistics for attendance. Many fans paid for limited availability tickets before single game ticket information was fully published. Better communications will lead to better experiences.
STADIUM OVERALL GRADE
This is an amazing stadium and it would be unreasonable to downgrade it for anomalous weather like the heat wave on display last Saturday, yet traffic, ticket and concessions prices, restrooms and weather relief impede a perfect score.
The Aztec Nation congratulates San Diego State on the on-time, on-budget completion of the fantastic new Mission Valley Snapdragon Stadium!