BYU's 20,900-seat basketball arena is truly a hoop heaven. There is no place quite like it in college basketball. Over the past 40 years, the Marriott Center has been home to the thrills and cheers of BYU basketball. With a history full of game-winning shots, slam dunks and some of the nation's top attendance marks, the Marriott Center's 20,900 seats have allowed BYU fans to see plenty of excitement since the facility's opening game on Dec. 3, 1971.
The Marriott Center is named for successful Utah businessman J. Willard Marriott and is the sixth-largest on-campus arena in the country behind Syracuse's Carrier Dome (33,000) and Kentucky's Rupp Arena (23,000). The building covers three acres and encloses 8 million cubic feet. There are approximately 10,100 chair seats with the balance being bleacher seats. About 40 percent of the seats are below the concourse level. The distance around the concourse level is a quarter of a mile. The roof, which is the size of two football fields placed side-by-side, is 10 stories high and has 50,000 bolts in it. The four-million pound roof was constructed first at ground level, then raised 38 feet.
"The Marriott Center is one of the top five places to play in the country, not just because of its size, but because its facilities are fantastic," said former UTEP head coach Don Haskins, the subject of the 2006 film Glory Road. "If there is a better arena, I haven't seen it."