Matt Jones is the online sports director for the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette. A double graduate of the University of Arkansas, he is a member of the Football Writers Association of America and National Collegiate Baseball Writers Association, and voter for the Heisman Trophy.
Postcards from Omaha: Rosenblatt Stadium
Editor's Note: As part of our coverage from the College World Series, WholeHogSports will feature a different part of Omaha, Neb., each day.
OMAHA, Neb. — The College World Series left Johnny Rosenblatt Stadium nine years ago, but driving up the hill from Interstate 80, those of us who were fortunate enough to attend games there still have that same feeling of wonderment.
This was, after all, college baseball's most sacred ground for more than 60 years.
Now an exhibit that is part of the world-famous Henry Doorly Zoo, what is left of the field essentially has the dimensions for whiffle ball. But there are markers everywhere reminding when the grounds were meant for baseball - the original home plate and its location, markers for the other three bases, original seats saved during the stadium's demolition in 2012, foul poles and, of course, that iconic sign with Rosenblatt's last name.
Other plaques commemorate the teams that won national championships - 24 programs won 61 titles in the park - and the professional titles won by professional teams affiliated with the Cardinals, Dodgers and finally the Royals, who shared the facility with the College World Series.
By 2010, it was time for a new stadium to host the College World Series. TD Ameritrade Park, built about three miles from Rosenblatt in downtown Omaha, has the feel of a big-league facility. Its construction addressed some of the shortfalls Rosenblatt had its final years, including parking. Overall it has brought a more modern look and feel to the event.
But no June is complete without a tip of the cap to the south, where Rosenblatt Stadium helped make the College World Series of the iconic events in American sports.
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