Donation Nation: Boise State Athletics receives $2.75 million in donations in three days

Jeremiah Dickey, Boise State director of athletics, at a press conference.
Photo courtesy Boise State Athletics

Raising $2.75 million in three days? It’s not impossible. 

Athletic Director Jeramiah Dickey announced that Boise State Athletics has received $2.75 million by three donors in the last week. 

“We are so grateful to all those who have embraced the vision for Boise State athletics,” Dickey said. “Every commitment moves us forward, helps us position our student-athletes for greater success and impacts the fan experience.”

All three of these donations were made as commitments to the Lyle Smith Society. This society, named after the longtime Boise State coach and athletic director, was created to increase philanthropic revenues for Boise State Athletics, provide consistent funding for scholarships, support operational needs and capital priorities, according to Boise State Athletics.  

An anonymous donor made the first donation of the week on Nov. 7, in the amount of $750,000. 

This donation will improve the game day experience for fans and student-athletes by helping purchase and install LED lights at Albertsons Stadium, according to Bronco Athletics. 

Bob and Bonnie Schwenkfelder made the sixth $1 million commitment to the Lyle Smith Society on Nov. 8.

The gift will provide a new dining hall for Boise State student-athletes as well as provide sport enhancement funds for men’s and women’s basketball, men’s and women’s tennis and volleyball programs.

“Our family bleeds blue,” Bob Schwenkfelder said. “Some of our fondest family memories include Bronco football and cheering the team on in Albertsons Stadium. We hope other families will join us and support the vision to strengthen Boise State Athletics.”

Another anonymous donor made a $1 million donation on Nov. 9, for the seventh $1 million dollar commitment to the Lyle Smith Society.

This donation will be allocated to capital improvements, including the north end zone project.

The new north end zone facility will impact Boise State student-athlete’s and also affect Boise State’s What’s Next Initiative: student-athlete experience; revenue generation; infrastructure; and marketability.

“It is incredible to see Bronco Nation rally behind the vision for Boise State Athletics with this level of support,” said Mike Keller, associate athletic director for major gifts. “We are so thankful for the philanthropic commitments that will alter the trajectory of Bronco Athletics and change the lives of current and future student-athletes.”

In April 2022, Bronco Athletics announced a $300 million renovation plan which will be the largest sports facility remodel in the university’s history.

With the athletics department spending over $40,000 annually to support each Boise State student-athlete, donations are crucial.

Each donation is a step towards the aspirations of Boise State Athletics joining a Power Five conference in the future. 

“Thank you Bronco Nation for investing in our Power 5 mentality,” Dickey said. “Your commitment helps us stay competitive and maintain an elite environment for our student-athletes to succeed.”

Jeremiah Dickey, Boise State director of athletics, at a press conference.
[Photo of Boise State Athletics Director Jeramiah Dickey.]
Photo courtesy Boise State Athletics

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