Named in honor the late Dr. F.C. "Phog" Allen, the Jayhawks' head coach for 39 years, Allen Fieldhouse is labeled by many as one of the best places in America to watch a college basketball game.
The Fieldhouse was dedicated on March 1, 1955, as the Jayhawks defeated Kansas State, 77-66, before an overflow throng of 17,228. Since the 1964-65 season, more than five million people have attended Kansas games at Allen Fieldhouse.
Noted sportswriter Mark Whicker of the Orange County Register calls Allen Fieldhouse "the best place in America to watch college basketball."
With capacity seating of 16,300, Allen Fieldhouse is the largest basketball arena in the state of Kansas and the second largest in the Big 12 Conference. Texas now has the largest arena in the Big 12 with a capacity of 16,755.
Capacity in Allen Fieldhouse was 15,200 prior to the 1986-87 season when 600 seats were added. Prior to the 1994-95 season, an additional 500 seats were added bringing capacity to 16,300.
More than 4,000 seats, including many close to the playing floor, are reserved for the students.
A $3.5 million recently completed renovation paved the way for new and larger restrooms and concession stands, an elevator and larger and more accessible entryways.
Allen Fieldhouse is located in the southern sector of the main campus and carries these dimensions: outside 344 feet by 254 feet, rising three stories above the ground; sidewalls 60 feet high; roof peak 85 feet; clear height at center 75 feet; arena 252 by 341 feet overall. The original construction cost was $2.5 million. There were 650,000 bricks used to construct the arena.
Allen Fieldhouse, historically, has served as host for many NCAA championships. In men's basketball alone, Allen Fieldhouse has hosted 37 NCAA Tournament games.
Today, Allen Fieldhouse hosts approximately 30 home basketball games (men and women combined) each year. The facility is also used for stage shows, major addresses and for commencement ceremonies when the weather is inclement.
Originally, Allen Fieldhouse was used as a multi-purpose facility. The Kansas track teams ran there during the indoor season, and the Fieldhouse served as an indoor practice facility for the basketball, softball and football teams.
In 1984, Anschutz Sports Pavilion was completed, making Allen Fieldhouse the home for only the KU men's and women's basketball teams.
In October of 1998, the Horejsi Family Athletic Center was constructed just to the west of Allen Fieldhouse. This 16,500 square foot building is the home for KU volleyball and a practice facility for both basketball teams.
Administrative and coaching offices for the athletic department are located in Allen Fieldhouse, Parrott Athletic Center, annexed to the field house in 1970, and the Wagnon Student-Athlete Center.
The Jayhawks play well in Allen. Over the past 25 seasons Kansas has compiled a 353-26 record in the Fieldhouse, including 18-0 in 2008-09. Between 1994 and December of 1998, the Jayhawks won 62 consecutive games in Allen Fieldhouse.