Longtime Major League third baseman Scott Rolen has given a major gift to Indiana athletics to go toward the construction costs of Bart Kaufman Field. The Indiana release follows.
BLOOMINGTON, Ind. – Major League Baseball Player Scott Rolen has given Indiana University a major gift in support of IU Baseball and the new stadium, Bart Kaufman Field.
Rolen, a Hoosier native from Jasper, Ind., made the contribution in honor of his parents, Ed and Linda Rolen, who are longtime educators and IU fans.
“Scott Rolen and his family are lifelong Hoosiers who bleed cream and crimson,” said Vice President and Director of Intercollegiate Athletics Fred Glass. “Scott has had a tremendous professional career and has been an incredible ambassador on behalf fellow Hoosiers. We are so appreciative to Scott for his incredible support of IU Athletics.”
“Scott’s accomplishments at the Major League level will undoubtedly put his name in Cooperstown some day,” said IU Baseball Head Coach Tracy Smith. “The fact that our baseball program will have the Rolen name permanently displayed at Bart Kaufman Field will serve as a daily reminder to our players and fans of the excellence we aspire to reach.”
“We are extremely grateful to Scott, his family and all of the donors who have made this stadium a reality, added Smith.
Rolen was drafted by the Philadelphia Phillies in the 2nd round of the 1993 amateur draft and made his MLB debut in August 1996. He is a seven-time MLB All-Star and eight- time Gold Glove winner.
His career includes time with the Phillies, St Louis Cardinals, Toronto Blue Jays and Cincinnati Reds. He is the only third baseman in major league history to record at least
2,000 hits, 500 doubles, 300 homers, 1,200 RBIs and six Gold Glove Awards. His 517 doubles rank 45th on the career list.
Construction began on Bart Kaufman Field and Andy Mohr Field (softball) in the spring of the 2012. Both facilities opened in March 2013.
The new baseball and softball complex is located on the north edge of the IU Bloomington athletics campus near the 45/46 Bypass. The new $19.8 million complex replaces Sembower Field and the IU Softball Field, which are presently located on Fee Lane adjacent to Foster Residence Center.
Highlights of Bart Kaufman Field include clubhouse, new locker room and dugouts, indoor hitting cage, turf field, press box, scoreboard, lighting and sound system and hospitality suites. The stadium also features an entry plaza, a picnic area, concessions and restrooms for fans. Browning Day Mullins Dierdorf Architects of Indianapolis designed the complex.
Rolen and his wife, Niki, have a daughter and a son and currently reside in Bloomington, IN. Rolen and his brother, Todd, run the Enis Furley Foundation (www.enisfurley.com), a nonprofit organization that provides a recreational camp for children and their families dealing with an illness, hardship or special needs.
The Rolen family will be honored at the dedication ceremony for Bart Kaufman Field on April 26, 2013.
Private donations and athletic department funds were used to support the baseball and softball complex. The IU Foundation will invest and administer Mr. Rolen’s gift.
Indiana Baseball has produced three All-Americans and seven Freshman All-Americans in the last five seasons alone, more combined All-Americans than the previous 62 years combined. Coach Smith led the Hoosiers to a Big Ten Tournament Championship and subsequent NCAA Regionals appearance in 2009. Alex Dickerson won the conference’s Triple Crown that season, and was named the Big Ten Player of the Year while Eric Arnett earned Big Ten Pitcher of the Year accolades. The Hoosiers have been tabbed as the preseason favorites to win the Big Ten in 2013 by several national media outlets, as well as, by the conference’s head coaches’ preseason poll. Twenty-two former IU student-athletes have gone to have Major League Baseball careers and a pair of Hoosiers enter ’13 spring training as members of MLB club’s 40-man rosters.