Traditions and mascots are a part of every game day experience across college football. However there may be no tradition as unique as the one found at each Florida State game at Doak Campbell Stadium. The FSU crowd goes crazy before the start of each game as Chief Osceola (a student portraying the famous Seminole Indian leader) rides out to midfield on an Appaloosa horse named Renegade, rises up and plunges his flaming spear into the field. This is just one of many traditions you can experience at Doak Campbell Stadium, home of the Seminoles since 1950.
Compared to other universities, the football program is young. Intercollegiate football began at Florida State in 1947 and the Seminoles played at Centennial Field for three seasons. A new stadium was constructed for the team by the 1950 season and named after former Florida State President Doak S. Campbell. With a capacity of 15,000 that consisted of seating on both sides of the field, the Seminoles played their first game at the stadium on October 7, 1950 against Randolph Macon.
Since its opening more than seven decades ago, Doak Campbell Stadium has grown from a small facility into one of the famous football stadiums in the nation. Due to increased fan support, the stadium has been expanded many times. Expansions in 1954, 1961 and 1970 increased the seating capacity to 40,500 and again in 1982 and in the 1990s to a capacity of over 82,000. An enormous single tier grandstand encloses the entire field. On the south end zone is a facility that contains a food court, restaurant and sports grill. Located on the rim on the north end zone are football offices that overlook the field. Luxury suites and the press box are also located along the rim of the stadium. Two HD video/scoreboards are located atop the stands in each endzone. Outside, the brick facade of the stadium helps the facility blend with the campus setting. The field at Doak Campbell Stadium was named after former coach Bobby Bowden on November 20, 2004 and the facility is currently known as Bobby Bowden Field at Doak Campbell Stadium.
Doak Campbell Stadium was expanded slightly by the 2016 season with the addition of the Champions Club in the south endzone. This club level seating addition is part of a large $280 million athletic expansion and upgrade project that was completed by 2018. The overall seating capacity was slightly reduced to 79,560. Doak Campbell Stadium is known as one of the most intimidating stadiums for opposing teams to visit leading Florida State being one of the best teams in the nation winning three National Championships and 17 Conference titles.