Paladin Stadium – Furman Paladins
The Proud Paladins of Furman
Furman University is the oldest private university in the state of South Carolina. Founded as a Baptist institution, it has been independent since 1992. Today it has a student body of 2,800 and offers more than 60 areas of study. It is a highly regarded liberal arts institution, as 97% of its senior class have received employment within 6 months of graduation.
The Furman athletic teams are known as the Paladins and are members of the Southern Conference. They compete at the FCS level of the NCAA. The Paladins have been a small college powerhouse, as they have won 13 Southern Conference championships. They have also appeared in the FCS National Championship game three times, winning it all in 1988. The home field for Furman football is the on-campus Paladin Stadium.
Food & Beverage 3
There are concession facilities on both the east and the west side of the field. They are located under the seating structure, so you may miss a few minutes of the game. The stands offer the typical stadium fare, including hot dogs ($3), brats ($5), nachos ($5), pretzels ($3), popcorn ($3), candy ($2) and chips ($2). Beverages include Pepsi brand soft drinks ($4) and bottled water ($3).
To be honest, the tailgating culture at Furman is so strong that most people are not hungry by the time the game starts!
Paladin Stadium is in the athletic complex of Furman University, next to the Timmons Arena and Latham Baseball Stadium. The 16,000-seat stadium opened in 1981 and provides a wonderful view of nearby Paris Mountain out the open end of the field. The stadium has gone through numerous upgrades over the years including the installation of artificial turf, and the building of the Pearce-Horton Football Complex. This building houses an exhibition on the history of the Paladins football program, as well as a social area for major donors and boosters.
Furman has also improved the fan experience with some of the most recent renovations. This includes the addition of several thousand padded chair backs to replace what had been bleacher seating, the landscaping of the area circling the field with shrubbery to compliment the campus landscaping and the installation of better lighting, as Furman plays several late afternoon/early evening games to avoid the South Carolina heat. A new 13’ X 32’ video board/scoreboard has also been installed to provide replay capabilities and keep fans updated on other scores around the country. Finally, the grass berm at the closed end of the field has been converted into a children’s play area for those who get restless during the game
The Furman campus is in the northeastern suburbs of Greenville, South Carolina. However, the immediate neighborhood surrounding Paladin Stadium is the 175-acre Furman campus. It is lushly landscaped and offers mountain views, forests, a lake with a landmark bell tower in the middle of it and more than 13 miles of hiking trails.
For those who desire a more active visit, Greenville offers a wide variety of dining, entertainment and shopping options. First, head over to the Falls on the Reedy. This is a downtown park which features a waterfall, the Liberty Bridge, and some beautiful gardens. Now that you have worked up an appetite, check out the Carolina Ale House or the Tupelo Honey Café for a meal. Lodging options near Furman include the Best Western Traveler’s Rest or the Hampton Inn Traveler’s Rest.
Furman fans look forward to football season more than any other athletic season of the year. There are two explanations for this… tailgating and the high expectations of another great Paladin football team. The tailgating tradition has been around since the beginning of Furman’s football history, as families travelled to the school for the entire day. Upon arrival they would set up their picnic sites beside the beautiful setting of the on-campus lake. After a short nap, it was off to the game itself. Today’s tailgaters have continued to meet on the grounds of the school before each game to socialize and have brunch. It is the small college version of The Grove at the University of Mississippi, as no expense is spared in setting up a lavish spread.
As kickoff nears the fans change into game mode. These fans have come to expect a winning performance, as the Paladins have a .737 home winning percentage at Paladin Stadium. The fans really get fired up when they play in-state rivals The Citadel and their crosstown rivals from Wofford.
The pregame activities reach a crescendo as the purple clad Paladins take the field, led by a knight aboard a galloping steed. The Furman band, known as the Paladin Regiment, then serenades the crowd with the fight song followed by the alma mater. It is all great theatre. Win or lose, Furman fans are gracious hosts, as that is simply the way they were raised.
The Furman campus is not right off the interstate. Fortunately, there some wide state highways to get you to the campus quickly.
.From I-85: Take exit 48B on to Highway 276 West towards Greenville. Merge onto Highway 276 North/Laurens Road. Turn right on Highway 276 North as it becomes Rutherford Street. Continue on Highway 276 as it becomes Poinsett Highway.
This will bring you to the main gate of Furman University. As you enter the gate, proceed down Furman Mall towards Daniel Chapel. When you reach the Chapel you will be directed towards the appropriate parking lot. Free parking is available on Blackwell Field or in either the South Housing or Softball parking lots.
Return on Investment 4
Tickets to Paladins games are priced from $20 for non-conference games to $25 for Southern Conference games. The parking is free on campus and concessions are reasonably priced. You can expect to find lodging on game weekends in the neighborhood of $100 a night in the Greenville area. Most fans are within commuting distance of the campus, including members of the opposition.
So, what is a Paladin? The Paladins were the legendary warriors from the court of Charlemagne. They are further described as “paragons of chivalry” and defenders of the noble cause.
Furman is not afraid to play the “big boys.” Past opponents have included Clemson, the University of South Carolina, Florida and Virginia Tech.
Two famous football Paladins are former NFL coach Sam Wyche and quarterback David Whitehurst.
A great way to end your day at Furman is to park by the lake and catch a beautiful South Carolina sunset.
Want to get a great selfie? The Paladin statue in front of the Pearce Horton Football Complex makes a great backdrop.
Furman is one of the oldest and most prestigious universities in the South. The beautiful campus, the tailgating tradition and a winning football program weave together to bring you back to a bygone era of Southern football.
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Hampton Inn Greenville/Travelers Rest
593 Roe Center Ct
Travelers Rest, SC 29690
Best Western Travelers Rest/Greenville
110 Hawkins Rd
Travelers Rest, SC 29690
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The natural beauty of Furman’s campus makes an appearance in Paladin Stadium, and the view is wonderful from every seat in the facility. The surrounding mountains, lines of trees and green spaces of the campus are all visible, with the mountain views more prominent the higher your seat. The hill behind the end zone is lined with patterned shrubbery, with some of the tailgating areas located just behind that end zone.