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NCAA: Indiana Athletics Receives $40 M Gift from Cindy Simon Skjodt

The Indiana Hoosiers received a $40 million gift from university alumna Cindy Simon Skjodt to assist in the renovations of the team's home arena, which will be renamed Simon Skjodt Assembly Hall in 2016.

Dec 20 2013, 2:26am CST | by

NCAA: Indiana Athletics Receives $40 M Gift from Cindy Simon Skjodt
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The Indiana Hoosiers received a $40 million gift and will rename their arena as Simon Skjodt Assembly Hall.

The university's official website has more details in its Dec. 19 update:

"Indiana University President Michael A. McRobbie today announced that IU Athletics has received a $40 million gift -- the largest in its history -- from IU alumna Cindy Simon Skjodt to provide much-needed renovations to Assembly Hall and launch IU Athletics' ambitious and unprecedented $150 million 'Catching Excellence: The Campaign for Indiana University Athletics' capital campaign.

"McRobbie also announced that in honor of the landmark gift made by Catching Excellence co-chair Cindy Simon Skjodt and her philanthropic organization, The Samerian Foundation, IU will rename Assembly Hall the Simon Skjodt Assembly Hall."  

Jordan Littman of InsideTheHall.com reported on the same day that the name change to Simon Skjodt (prounounced "Scott) Assembly Hall will take effect in 2016. 

Littman also says Cindy Simon Skjodt is the daughter of the late Indiana Pacers co-owner Mel Simon. Simon Skjodt and her husband, Paul Skjodt, co-own the United States Hockey League's (USHL) Indiana Ice. 

McRobbie says the Simon family name "has long been associated with transformative philanthropy" when he spoke with USA Today Sports' Bob Kravitz and Zach Osterman:

"The Simon family name has long been synonymous transformative philanthropy, and this extraordinary gift from Cindy Simon Skjodt and her family will allow IU to preserve and improve one of the great venues in college athletics for the next generation of Hoosier basketball fans.

"We are deeply indebeted to Cindy Simon Skjodt and the entire Simon family for their deep and continued support across the full spectrum of Indiana University's mission." 

For her part, Simon Skjodt lauded the unparalleled basketball environment in Assembly Hall, as cited in the university press release.

"I grew up going to Indiana University games and have great memories of watching basketball games with my father. The atmosphere in Assembly Hall is truly unmatched anywhere in college basketball." 

The Littman report enumerates sevearl of the renovations which will be done on the current Assembly Hall:

--"Refurbishments will focus on improving amenities to enhance the fan experience while preserving the current seat configuration and seating capacity.

--"The south lobby will be restructured with a new entryway and dramatic atrium. Escalators will replace ramps in the south lobby.

--"Existing bathrooms and concession stands will be remodeled and new bathrooms will be added.

--"A large state-of-the-art video scoreboard will replace the current bifurcated scoreboard, improving fan experience for all fans in Assembly Hall, especially those sitting in the balcony.

--"Box seat-style seating will be added above the south baseline bleachers and will generate revenue to pay for the seating and to help fund going upkeep of Assembly Hall." 

Aside from the $40 million donation being the largest in IU athletics history, it is also the fourth-largest ever in school history, according to Fox 59 of Indianapolis. 

 
 
 


Poch de la Rosa follows all major U.S. sports: NFL, MLB, NBA, NHL and the NCAA. His favorite teams are the Colts, Braves, Pacers, Sharks and Irish, respectively.

 

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