Bud Walton Arena
"The Basketball Palace of Mid-America"
|Bud Walton Arena Photo Album|
Arkansas has played in Bud Walton Arena – The Basketball Palace of Mid-America – for 14 years and has drawn more than 3.8 million fans, ranked among national attendance leaders every season and won 80 percent of its games.
When Arkansas joined the Southeastern Conference in August of 1990, Razorback Athletic Director Frank Broyles knew the athletic facilities had to be upgraded to contend in America’s most nationally competitive league.
His attention turned immediately to basketball. The Hogs were very successful, coming off a Final Four trip earlier that year, but had just a 9,000-seat home, Barnhill Arena.
One day, Bud Walton, co-founder of Wal-Mart, visited Broyles and asked him what Arkansas needed most to be competitive in the SEC. Broyles mentioned the need for additional basketball seats and was asked by Walton what a new arena would cost. The figure $30 million was discussed and Walton offered to pay half. From that visit, fabulous Bud Walton Arena was born.
Groundbreaking to grand opening was accomplished in a remarkable 18 months. The Razorbacks played in Bud Walton for the first time in November of 1993. Everything went perfectly during the first full year. Not only did Arkansas sell out the arena, the Razorbacks were unbeaten in their new home (16-0) and won the 1994 national championship.
The Hogs carry a 183-43 (.810) record into the 2008 season.
In 14 seasons, UA has an all-time average attendance of 17,250 in Bud Walton Arena. Arkansas has ranked in the top 15 nationally in attendance every year in BWA, including a No. 9 ranking in 2007 with an average of 16,720.
Entering the 2008 campaign, UA has a combined mark of 487-137 in its last two homes for an outstanding home winning percentage of .780 over the last 50 years.
BWA houses a deluxe museum on the ground level that includes a tribute to Arkansas’ 1994 NCAA championship and multiple Final Four appearances as well as the history of Razorback basketball, track and field, baseball, tennis and golf. Eye-catching displays on the concourse level salute recent Razorback highlights.
The 2004 season marked the debut of a new custom scoreboard in the shape of a basketball hoop. The board, 24 feet, three inches wide by 22 feet tall, features four video screens, each 12 feet, six inches wide by eight feet, 10 inches tall. An LED ring at the top is used to display game statistics.
The Razorbacks received an expanded locker room in 2005, which includes a lounge with a spacious meeting area.
As captivating as the displays, museum and championship banners are hanging from the arena floor’s ceiling, the aspect of the facility demanding the most attention is spirit. Every game still produces an NCAA Tournament-type atmosphere with the exception of the crowd, which is anything but neutral.
According to Rosser International in Atlanta, when the arena was built, there were more seats in less space than in any such facility in the world. It’s no wonder the noise level can be absolutely ear-splitting.
From pre-game to post-game, Bud Walton Arena is perfectly choreographed with the band, the spirit groups, the lighting system, the public address, the scoreboard and the team. Each game at Walton Arena is a rich experience leaving Razorback fans hungry for more.
Arkansas’ Records at Home
Bud Walton Arena (1994-present)
|Year||Record||SEC Record||Attendance||Average||National Rank|
|1994||16-0 (1.000)||8-0 (1.000)||322,146||20,134||4th|
|1995||14-1 (.933)||7-1 (.875)||301,212||20,081||4th|
|1996||14-4 (.778)||6-2 (.750)||346,698||19,261||5th|
|1997||15-3 (.833)||6-2 (.750)||329,540||18,308||5th*|
|1998||15-0 (1.000)||8-0 (1.000)||291,089||19,406||4th|
|1999||14-2 (.875)||6-2 (.750)||292,704||18,294||5th|
|2000||9-5 (.643)||5-3 (.625)||249,300||17,807||6th|
|2001||16-2 (.889)||7-1 (.875)||292,057||16,225||9th|
|2002||11-5 (.688)||5-3 (.625)||241,033||15,065||13th|
|2003||8-8 (.563)||3-5 (.375)||236,638||14,790||14th|
|2004||10-6 (.625)||4-4 (.500)||236,676||14,792||13th|
|2005||13-3 (.813)||5-3 (.625)||252,608||15,788||9th|
|2006||15-1 (.938)||7-1 (.875)||239,336||14,958||12th|
|2007||13-3 (.813)||5-3 (.625)||267,520||16,720||9th|
|Totals||183-43 (.810)||81-31 (.723)||3,898,557||17,250|
* national rank based on regular-season average of 19,321