LEXINGTON, Ky. ? With the 2006 Southeastern Conference Championship ringing in the ears of the Kentucky baseball program this offseason, the University has decided to give Cliff Hagan Stadium a face lift in the form of some exterior moderations for the 2007 season.

Some of the changes and additions to Kentucky?s ballpark are a new deck in right field, currently under construction, and a state-of-the-art scoreboard in left field which will contribute to a fan-friendly atmosphere.

?We have a new deck that is going to be in right field that will be able to house 100-150 people,? Kentucky head coach John Cohen said. ?The entire parking area behind our right-field fence will have a much better view of the ballpark, because we have lowered the fence and put up a padded wall. We?re adding kind of a semi-green monster effect to our right field side because it plays so small. We have a brand new video board for our fans which will be tremendous. It will make the games much more fan-friendly, much more educational, and more inviting to our fans.?

UK baseball experienced unprecedented growth a season ago, as they experienced the most successful season in the 102-year history of the program. That success was not limited to on the field, as Kentucky fans began filling the stands in record numbers. A school-record 3,529 fans packed Cliff Hagan in June as the Wildcats hosted Ball State in the school?s first NCAA Regional. That excitement translated into a staggering 453-percent total increase in attendance from the 2005 to 2006 seasons.

Deputy Director of Athletics Rob Mullens is excited about some of the facility modifications in progress.

?The biggest change fans will see this season is a new scoreboard, with state-of-the-art elements,? Mullens said. ?Fans will also notice that we will have a new and improved outfield fence and the excitement created by the fans in right field has allowed us to create a unique viewing platform behind the fence.?

Chairback Season Tickets Sold Out

For the first time in school history, the Kentucky baseball team has sold out of chairback season tickets. Over 1,000 season tickets have been sold thus far into the pre-ordering period. Fans can still purchase reserved bleacher-back season tickets for only $35 each and season tickets in the general admission sections for only $25. Single game tickets will go on sale in late January.

A year ago, Kentucky head coach John Cohen formulated a plan which involved the team going door-to-door in order to sell season tickets. With the success of the team last year and the popularity of season tickets so far this offseason, going door-to-door may not be necessary, however Cohen thinks that it is important for the team to become active in the community.

?I sat in a meeting with our Marketing folks a year ago and I told them ?If we have to go door-to-door in order to sell season tickets, I will do whatever it takes?,? Cohen said. ?It is probably three or four weeks after that that I felt that was really something we needed to do. It was so successful, no matter how many season tickets we sell – I think that is something we are going to do forever. I think it is a great lesson learned for our players and our coaching staff. The message is that we can?t complain about attendance if we?re not willing to go out and do whatever it takes. We are hopeful that we are going to have an outstanding facility and baseball program for our fans to be a part of for a long time.?

Cohen believes establishing a close relationship with the Kentucky fanbase is essential in building a well-rounded, successful baseball program at UK.

?I feel optimistic about the fact that when we went out to meet our fanbase, the response rate was tremendous,? Cohen said. ?I understand that winning is important, but having a connection between our players and fans ? in our sport ? is crucial. The more you share with the fans our vision, the more that communication process becomes a part of the day-to-day routine, the more they appreciate that. I think fans want to know what your ideas are and what you are trying to get done. If you just communicate with these great fans in Lexington and the Big Blue Nation, they respond.?

Fans can order season tickets online at or by contacting the UK Ticket Office at (859) 257-1818 for more information.

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