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TCU attempting to renovate arena in hopes of boosting fan base

Apr 29, 2013, 8:25 PM EDT

TCU Horned Frogs starters watch the last minute of their loss to Texas during the NCAA men's Big 12 basketball tournament in Kansas City, Missouri

When TCU decided to move to the Big 12, many things, most of them football-related, had to improve. On the basketball side of things, they were able to lure Trent Johnson away from LSU to take over a Horned Frogs program that hasn’t been the the NCAA Tournament since 1998.

Now, the program is getting the funds together for  a much-needed renovation to its basketball arena.

Daniel-Meyer Coliseum will undergo a $45 million facelift, with $10 million already pledged from long-time fans Ed and Rae Schollmaier. Ed Schollmaier suggested to a committee recently formed to look into possible renovations that a solid addition would be to add front-row, premium seating.

“As I looked at our arena I thought, boy, we’d be able to do the same thing and it would be really, really great in terms of some premium-type seats if only the floor were three or four feet lower,” Schollmaier told the Fort Worth Star-Telegram.

TCU made the renovation announcement two weeks ago and Athletic Director Chris Del Conte is hoping to lock up the full funding by November in order to begin construction after next season.

“Now you’ve got to go figure it out,” Del Conte said. “It’s important to our TCU community.”

The committee also looked at the arena at Wichita State, which is know for housing a raucous game environment. The same firm that designed Charles Koch Arena for the Shockers also designed Daniel-Meyer Coliseum 52 years ago. Koch Arena was renovated in 2003.

In the article, it really shows Ed Schollmaier’s dedication to the TCU program, despite the fact that he’s not an alum of the school (he’s a Cincinnati graduate and native). But to have a guy like that backing the progress of a program that by most historical standards has been sub-par, that’s a good step toward making the Horned Frogs relevant.

On the court, Johnson led TCU to the CBI in 2011-12 — just the program’s third postseason appearance in 14 years — and there was already this little moment from this season to get the momentum going.

Follow David Harten on Twitter at @David_Harten

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