Thursday, March 4, 2010

Beard Eaves Memorial Coliseum Fun Facts...

Beard Eaves Memorial Coliseum saw it's last game on Wednesday night. The Auburn men's basketball team defeated Mississippi St. 89 - 80 in front of almost 10,000 fans. It was a nice farewell for Beard Eaves and a nice farewell to six seniors on the basketball team. They finished with a less than stellar year, but did pull to even overall on the season with a 15-15 record and 6-9 in the SEC. To the basketball teams credit, they fought hard in Bread Eaves' last game and Coach Lebo coached one of his best games of the year. The coliseum has seen many ups and downs in its 42 year history. I thought it would be fun to look at some highlights of our old Coliseum....

  • First game was against Pete Maravich and LSU. AU won 90-71
  • In that first game "Pistol" Pete scored 46 points, which would end up being the most points an opposing player would ever score against AU.
  • The famous Harlem Globetrotters played there many times.
  • In 1969, the Chicago Bulls played the Atlanta Hawks in a regular season game at BEMC.
  • In 1970, John Mengelt scored 60 points against Alabama, which was the BEMC record for most points scored in a game.
  • In 1974, the AU women played their first basketball game. They beat Alabama 69-31
  •  The coliseum was named for Coach Joel Eaves, who led Auburn to their first SEC championship in mens basketball. It's also named for Jeff Beard, one-time Auburn athletic director from 1951-1972.
  • In 1984 Auburn beat #1 Kentucky 82-63, which was the first time the Auburn men had beaten a #1 ranked opponent.
  • In 1989 the Auburn womens team beat #1 Tennessee, which was the first time the AU women had beaten a #1 ranked opponent.
  • In 1969 the Rolling Stones played two shows at BEMC
  • In 1972 BEMC hosted the Allmond Brothers Band, The Beach Boys, The Temptations, The Supremes, Issac Hayes and Rod Stewart.
  • In 1973 Elton John payed at the coliseum as well as Santana and Crosby, Steels and Nash.
  • The rock-a-thon continued in 1974 with The Beach Brothers returning, The Doobie Brothers and "The King" Elvis Presley.
  • Other musical acts that came to Beard Eaves through the years were names such as The Oak Ridge Boys, The Commodores, Olivia Newton John, Neil Diamond, Kris Kristofferson, Waylon Jennings and Jessie Colter, Barbara Mandrell and The Statler Brothers, Bruce Springsteen, James Taylor, John Denver, Chicago, The Eagles, Charlie Daniels, Heart, Jimmy Buffett, REM and many others.
  • President Gerald Ford spoke at Beard Eaves in 1982.
  • Bob Hope also brought his comedy act to BEMC in 1974.
  • Beard Eaves was home to other comedy acts as well, including Dana Carvey in 1988 and George Carlin in 1989.
  • BEMC was a stop on Tina Turners tour in 1985.
  • The most points an Auburn team ever scored in BEMC came in 1991, when AU beat Troy 141-116.
  • In 1993 the Auburn women played their first game on ESPN. They beat Alabama like a drum 93 - 67.
  • In 1998 the Auburn mens team set two records against rival Alabama. First, they beat them 94 - 40 which was Alabamas worst loss in school history. Second, they set a record for the largest margin of victory against an SEC team.
  • The 1999 Auburn men did not lose a game at home in BEMC. They went 15-0.
  • BEMC had several jerseys hanging from the rafters. They included Rex Frederick (57-59), John Mengelt (69-71), Charles Barkley (82-84), Chuck Peron (83-86), Wesley Person (91-94), Vickie Orr (85-89), Ruthie Bolton (85-89), Carolyn Bolton (88-91)
You can see extended Timelines at the Dothan Eagle here...

Or in the Montgomery Advertiser here....

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