USF’s Sun Dome To Become Yuengling Center

Name change takes effect July 1

After 38 years, the Sun Dome is getting a corporate sponsor. D.G. Yuengling & Son have purchased the naming rights to the building, which will be renamed the Yuengling Center as of July 1.

“This is an historic day for the University of South Florida and for our community,” said USF System President Judy Genshaft. “And let me just say that the Sun Dome is one of our most recognizable landmarks.” The Sun Dome had never undergone a name change before, but this partnership with Yuengling will bring vital revenue necessary to grow both the university and their athletic department.

The contract runs for ten years. USF chose Yuengling to purchase the naming rights after searching for “a reputable company with solid leadership and a strong local presence.” Yuengling may be a Pennsylvania-based company, but their largest brewery is located in Tampa and has been since 1999. Tampa Bay Entertainment Properties served as the agent behind this deal.

The sale of the naming rights come with responsibility efforts. Yuengling will spearhead an initiative for responsible drinking that will include designated ride sharing locations and initiatives with the USF student body. Yuengling will also host various events as part of the First 50 Days on campus for new students, and along with TBEP they will pilot a program for designated drivers.

As part of the deal, Yuengling will also receive LED ribbon board branding at USF football home games in Raymond James Stadium and “extensive assets” within the soon-to-be-former Sun Dome.

The building in question opened in November of 1980 and has undergone extensive renovations since 2000. Along with housing the Bulls’ men’s and women’s basketball teams, The Sun Dome hosts a myriad of concerts and events throughout the calendar year.

Tampa Bay Enterainment Properties, formed by Tampa Bay Lightning owner Jeff Vinik, focuses on the operations of sports and entertainment venues such as Amalie Arena.

USF Sun Dome. Tampa Fla. Aug. 24, 2012. Photo by Tom Hagerty.