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Syracuse Discussing Naming Rights to Carrier Dome

Carrier Dome basketball

Seeking ways to fund a renovation project to the Carrier Dome, Syracuse University could make the venue’s naming rights available.

Syracuse has made it known that it would like to modernize the Carrier Dome, which first opened in 1980. The elaborate proposal–which the university has previously stated could amount to more than $200 million in upgrades–seeks to make several changes, including a more than $100 million replacement of the Carrier Dome’s inflatable roof.

Given that the funding looms as one of the largest questions, Syracuse University is closely examining the original naming rights deal for the Carrier Dome. The facility’s name was agreed to upon its opening, following a $2.75 million contribution from then Carrier CEO Mel Holm. While that agreement was to be in perpetuity, the university is wondering whether the proposed changes to the facility will give it more leeway in seeking a new contract, be it with Carrier or another corporate partner. More from Bloomberg:

Carrier spokeswoman Michelle Caldwell didn’t immediately return a call seeking comment on the dome, which is scheduled to be renovated as part of a $255 million campus upgrade. The school’s football, basketball and lacrosse teams play in the stadium.

Syracuse could get at least $2 million a year in a new naming-rights deal, said Jeff Knapple, chief executive officer of Van Wagner Sports & Entertainment, which advises teams and colleges on stadium projects. The Texas Dow Employees Credit Union in 2014 paid the University of Houston $15 million to name TDECU Stadium through 2024, earning more for the school in two years than Syracuse has made in the past 36.

If Syracuse and Carrier can’t reach an agreement, the university could attempt to buy out the original contract. The school could also go to court to make the argument that the original deal should be scrapped, because when the dome is renovated, it will be radically different from the venue Holm sponsored.

We previously took a look at how the proposed Carrier Dome renovations and how they would affect several programs, including basketball. Among the potential changes that might be specifically designed for basketball include new scoreboards.

Image courtesy of Syracuse Orange.

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