|ESPN.com: College Basketball Nation||[Print without images]|
|The floor of the Matthew Knight Arena, the new $227 million home of the Ducks, represents the view of a fir tree forest.|
“I think our fans are really going to like the atmosphere,” first-year Ducks coach Dana Altman said. “I don't know if there's any one, specific thing. It's just a real nice arena and one that I think the Pac-10 will really enjoy. The atmosphere in Mac Court was unbelievable, and on game day it was a great place to play. But the other 330 days when we didn't have a home game, it left a little bit to be desired.”
To create a modern arena with the intimate fan experience provided at Mac Court, Ellerbe Becket incorporated feedback from the athletic department, administration, students, alumni, neighbors and major donors. One primary goal in the design of “Matt Court” was to establish an intimate house for basketball, with a vision of creating a “Theater for Basketball.” The new arena has a capacity of 12,500 and preserves an intimate, intimidating feel with a seating bowl pitched at 36 degrees in the student section and upper level – the steepest pitch allowed by code.
“We wanted to make sure the seating bowl fit into the experience of the game – not just the building,” said Niemuth. “The university passed on modern luxury boxes to avoid the upper seats being pushed farther from the floor. Design of the arena was a true collaboration of people who had passion and pride for the historical sports facility it replaced.”