Pittsburg State University’s student-athletes and fans have a new court to enjoy thanks to the support of two of its loyal alumni, Alan and Roberta Whetzel.

Alan (’60 BS) and Roberta (’59 BS) provided the leadership gift that has allowed university officials to begin renovating John Lance Arena.

The renovations include a new 31,000-square-foot maple hardwood playing surface that  encompasses the main court and two practice courts, along with new seating on the lower level. Future renovations will include the construction of new office space and multi-purpose rooms on the mezzanine level. This will include space for pre-game receptions beginning with the 2013-14 season and production space for CAPS-TV.

In honor of their contributions, university officials held a ceremony on January 5, 2013, to dedicate the Gorillas’ basketball and volleyball playing court as “Whetzel Court.”

“What they made possible with phase one of our construction project will ultimately end up being a multi-million dollar project that will touch every athletic facility on this campus in some way,” said Jim Johnson, director of intercollegiate athletics.

The Whetzels, who first met on PSU’s campus more than 50 years ago, say they wanted to give back to the academic and athletic programs that mean so much to them.

“We wanted to honor the past, celebrate today and invest in the future,” said Roberta Whetzel. “This project has done all of those things.”