SAN DIEGO (AP) — After playing home games in a Los Angeles suburb the last two seasons, San Diego State’s football players loaded into buses for the 10-minute drive to their new stadium.
They liked what they saw of 35,000-seat Snapdragon Stadium so much that they were already looking forward to what it will be like having a home-field advantage again.
Snapdragon Stadium is scheduled to open Sept. 3 with a game against Arizona.
The Aztecs said the first thing that jumped out at them is how steep the stands are and how close they are to the field.
Linebacker Caden McDonald said getting to open a new stadium in the school’s 100th season of football was a big reason why he came back for his senior season.
The Aztecs haven’t played in San Diego since 2019. Due to the pandemic affecting the 2020 schedule, the school decided to move up demolition of 70,000-seat SDCCU Stadium earlier than originally planned to help expedite construction of Snapdragon Stadium.
The stadium is the first phase of a campus expansion in Mission Valley.
The 35,000-seat stadium -- previously known as Aztec Stadium -- and SDSU's 132-acre Mission Valley campus have been in the works since San Diego voters approved Measure G in November 2018.
In May 2020, the city council sold the city-owned stadium and property for $86.2 million to the university.