After Saying No, SU Carrier Dome Finally Accepts WWE Show

Matt Boone

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WWE pro wrestling coming to Syracuse University’s Carrier Dome in December

by Tom Leo / The Post-Standard
Thursday August 06, 2009, 6:00 AM

Syracuse, NY — After saying no to professional wrestling for several years, Syracuse University officials have had a change of heart.

The university has booked a World Wrestling Entertainment Raw show at 7:30 p.m. Dec. 30 at the Carrier Dome. The show — expected to draw 20,000 people — will be the first professional wrestling event at the Dome, said its director, Pat Campbell.

"We’re actively trying to pursue some different types of events, and this has been out there for years," Campbell said.

About a decade ago, Vince McMahon, head of the World Wrestling Federation (formerly the WWE), slammed SU for refusing to allow his wrestlers to perform in the Dome. University officials said then professional wrestling, which often features coarse language, sexual innuendo and staged violence, didn’t fit the university’s academic image.

"We changed our philosophy somewhat," Campbell said. "It’s a no-brainer for us to do this here. There’s a good market in Syracuse for it, and there’s a lot of interest by the organization to come here."

Ticket prices have not been announced.

"There’s something about the Dome that just generates more interest, especially when you’re doing something for the first time," Campbell said. "We’re really excited about it. We think it’s going to be a lot of fun, and quite unique."

WWE Raw is televised Monday nights on the USA Cable Network. WWE SmackDown is televised Friday nights on MyNetworkTV. There are pay-for-view shows for bigger events.

The show in the Carrier Dome will not be televised, Campbell said.

The WWE has promised to bring its major stars to Syracuse, Campbell said, which could include WWE champion Randy Orton, U.S. champion Kofi Kingston and Divas champion Mickie James. A WWE representative said Wednesday it’s too early to say which wrestlers are coming to Syracuse.

The WWE SmackDown/ECW SummerSlam tour came to the Turning Stone Resort and Casino on Sunday and played at the 5,000-seat capacity Event Center. Tickets cost $40, $25 and $15.

Campbell said he expects a similar show to the one at Turning Stone, but on a bigger scale.

"There are details still to be worked out," Campbell said, "but we’re going to make use of the size of the facility, and the expanse of the facility. I guarantee you it will definitely be a spectacle."

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