Tampa Sports Authority
May 28, 1965 - Governor Hayden Burns signs
bill creating the Tampa Sports Authority.
October 1, 1965 - Tampa Sports Authority takes
over Al Lopez Field baseball facilities and surrounding acreage from Columbus Drive to Buffalo
Avenue and Dale Mabry Highway and Himes Avenue.
October 18, 1966 - Tampa Sports Authority
takes delivery of check for $4,449,413.89 and orders stadium construction to begin on November 8,
1967 set as completion date.
November 4, 1967 - First game at Tampa
Stadium. The University of Tennessee defeated the University of Tampa 0-38.
August 10, 1968 - First professional football
game at Tampa Stadium. The Atlanta Falcons played the Washington Redskins in front of 40,915
people. The Redskins defeated the Falcons 16-14.
April 26, 1975 - The first Rowdies game was
held. The Rowdies played Rochester in front of 10,500 people and won 1-0.
August 21, 1976 - The first Tampa Bay
Buccaneers game was played. The Bucs played Miami in front of a crowd of 67,466 people; Miami won
March 6, 1983 - The first Bandits game was
played against Boston; the Bandits won 21-17.
July 15, 1984 - USFL Championship held at
Tampa Stadium; Philadelphia defeated Arizona 23 - 3.
December 23, 1986 - First Hall of Fame Bowl.
Boston College beat Georgia 27-24.
September 19, 1988 - Tampa Sports Authority
announces the New York Yankees will begin spring and winter training at the Tampa Sports Authority
Complex located at the corner of Himes Avenue and Columbus Drive.
April 27, 1990 - Tampa Bay Buccaneers sign
lease agreement with Tampa Sports Authority through year 2000.
September 1993 - Tampa Sports Authority
introduces plans for the future which includes: the now Tampa Bay Times Forum for the
Tampa Bay Lightining, spring training home for the New York Yankees, expansion of Tampa Stadium and
plans for a Bucs training complex.
March 21, 1995 - Name of Tampa Stadium changed
to Houlihan Stadium by right of Buccaneer contract.
April 1995 - Hall of Fame Bowl is officially
renamed and will now be called the Outback Bowl.
October 20, 1995 - USF Bulls sign 10-year
agreement with Tampa Sports Authority for stadium to host home football games starting in
January 1, 1996 - The first Outback bowl was
played between Penn State and Auburn. Penn State won 43-14.
March 1, 1996 - Legends Field opens; The New
York Yankees played host to the Cleveland Indians.
March 27, 1996 - Tampa Sports Authority backs
April 1, 1996 - Tampa Sports Authority and
City Council approve stadium deal.
April 19, 1996 - Taxpayers on hook for stadium
design. Tampa Sports Authority to pay $2 million; Bucs to pay $4 million.
August 6, 1996 - Tampa Sports Authority
approves sale of south property to Hillsborough Aviation Authority for $19.375
October 1996 - The now Tampa Bay Times
Forum (formerly known as the Ice Palace) opens its doors to the public.
October 15, 1996 - Groundbreaking begins on
the new Tampa Community Stadium.
September 6, 1997 - University of South
Florida played their first football game at Houlihan Stadium, beating Kentucky Wesleyan
September 20, 1998 - The first Bucs game was
played at Raymond James Stadium®. The Bucs defeated the Chicago Bears 27-15.
September 30, 1998 - Tampa Sports Authority
conveys ownership of Legends Field to Hillsborough County.
October 3, 1998 - University of South Florida
held its first game at Raymond James Stadium® against Citadel; USF won
January 1, 1999 - First Outback Bowl was
played at Raymond James Stadium® featuring Penn State and Kentucky; Penn State won
January 18, 1999 - Demolition began on
Houlihan Stadium as the first wrecking ball was dropped by Mayor Dick Greco.
March 20, 1999 - The Tampa Bay Mutiny played
their first game at Raymond James Stadium® against DC United; DC United won 5-2.
April 11, 1999 - The last portion of Houlihan
Stadium was demolished in an explosion. The lounge box structure was detonated and witnessed by
January 28, 2001 - Super Bowl XXXV at Raymond
James Stadium®. The Baltimore Ravens defeated the New York Giants 34-7 behind an impressive
defensive performance by MVP Ray Lewis.
December 19, 2003 - Tampa Sports Authority
conveys ownership of Raymond James Stadium® to Hillsborough County but retains responsibilities of
managing the facility.
December 30, 2004 - Tampa Sports Authority
conveys ownership of the now Tampa Bay Times Forum to Hillsborough County.