If you’re a football purist, the thought of watching a game on a field painted intermittently with different colors might make your stomach turn. The Central Arkansas Bears play on First Security Field at Estes Stadium, a playing surface that is striped with gray and purple — and a majority of the school’s patrons are now colored with pride.
For those who live in the area or are thinking about following their favorite team to a game in Jonesboro, a trip to The Convo (now know as First National Bank Arena) is recommended. For one, it’s a low-priced bargain. For another, the four screen, four quadrant set-up is very unique – whether you love it or hate it.
Chris Crockett speaks from experience. As an avid Tennessee-Martin Skyhawks fan, he and his wife have traveled to every fellow Ohio Valley Conference stadium — and anywhere else their beloved Skyhawks have played over the past seasons. “The best atmosphere in the conference,” Crockett says while standing near the sidelines of Southeast Missouri State University’s Houck Stadium, “and we go everywhere.”
When it comes to Missouri State University football, tailgating is a pretty big deal. This is a movement that begins and ends with BearFest Village, an area across Grand Street from the Plaster Sports Complex that blossoms in popularity every year, regardless of the team’s success.
Upon asking about the history of Gary Hogan Field, Hogan himself leads you to a large photo. It is a picture of the stadium that would become his namesake, taken on the July day in 1985 when he began his 11-season tenure as the head coach of the University of Arkansas-Little Rock baseball team.
At first glance at one of the gates at Hammons Field, the relationship between the Springfield Cardinals (the Double-A affiliate of the St. Louis Cardinals) and the Missouri State University Bears seems to be one of a symbiotic nature.