The Oregon softball program received a $10 million gift from Robert Sanders, UO athletic director Rob Mullens announced Saturday. The gift will lead a push towards construction of a new softball stadium. “I’m thrilled to announce a leading gift to Oregon softball that will pave the way to a new era for our highly successful program,” Mullens said during Saturday’s Women in Flight dinner. “Thanks to Mr. Sanders’ generosity, we will be able to ride the momentum of this amazing season and create a new home for Ducks softball.” The new softball facility will be named after Sanders’ late wife, Jane, who passed away in June 2013 at the age of 85. Robert, a fullback for Oregon, graduated from the university in 1949. He met Jane, a cheerleader, while the two attended the UO. Jane graduated in 1950. The couple became successful in the lumber industry, with businesses in Oregon, Washington and California. “We cannot thank Robert enough for his generosity,” UO President Michael Gottfredson said. “The university is grateful and proud to help honor the legacy of Jane Sanders. Our softball team is a tremendous point of pride for this university and this gift will only serve to bolster it.” The date of opening and location for the new softball facility have yet to be determined. The Oregon softball team currently plays its home games at Howe Field, which opened as a baseball stadium for the Ducks in 1936. The softball team began playing there in 1987. Some Twitter reaction to Sanders’ gift:
Oregon P Karissa Hovinga, who attended the banquet: “He said he had a big announcement, but I didn’t think it would be that. This is huge.” — Rob Moseley (@GoDucksMoseley) June 8, 2014
OH MY GOSH WE ARE GETTING A STADIUM
I sat down with Mike White on Thursday. He essentially said he’d consider leaving if no SB stadium built. That seems far less likely today. — Jake Zivin (@JakeZivin) June 8, 2014
Not a bad week at all for Mike White despite the WCWS loss. His assistants earn raises and he gets closer to a new softball stadium. — Andrew Greif (@AndrewGreif) June 8, 2014
Follow Victor Flores on Twitter @vflores415
Want to have fun writing or editing articles about our Beloved Ducks? We have openings for just a few volunteer writers and editors and it is typically just 3-5 hours per week.
Learn more by clicking here.