BUFFALO, NY – In recognition of a leadership gift made by the Murchie family to the recently announced fieldhouse, the UB Council endorsed a resolution, on Monday, to name the new fieldhouse at the University at Buffalo, the Murchie Family Fieldhouse in honor of former UB hockey player Tunney Murchie and his family. The naming is subject to the approval of the SUNY Chancellor and the SUNY Board of Trustees.
This most recent gift by the Murchie family is the single largest gift ever made to the athletic department, and has helped make the long awaited fieldhouse a reality for UB.
Murchie and his family, staunch supporters of UB Athletics, have been incredibly generous over the years. In 2008, the family made a $100,000 gift to the men's club hockey program. They donated $220,000 in 2010 for the renovation of the Edward L Wright Practice Facility in Alumni Arena.
In 2012, they donated $1 million for capital projects in UB Stadium and Alumni Arena. In July 2013, the Murchie Family Football Center was unveiled, in recognition of their generous support.
In 2016, "The Murch" completed a major expansion, adding new state-of-the-art football team meeting rooms and coaches offices. The expansion was made possible by a $3 million donation from the Murchie family in 2014 – previously the largest gift to athletics.
"This is a family contribution," Murchie said. "We will continue to do this to try and establish a legacy in return for all the fine things the school has provided our family. This is also a commitment to UB having a significant FBS football program."
On Sept. 15, University at Buffalo Athletic Director Allen Greene announced that construction will begin in October on the 92,000-square-foot fieldhouse that will be situated just beyond the north end zone of UB Stadium.
"We can't thank the Murchie family enough for all they've done to help make an indoor practice facility a reality," Greene said. "The impact of this gift will span our entire department and will help all of our student-athletes hone their skills year-round in a climate controlled environment in pursuit of conference championships."
The new training facility is scheduled to open in the spring of 2019.
"We are incredibly grateful to the Murchie family for once again, going above and beyond in support of our student-athletes," Deputy Director of Athletics Eric Gross said. "Mr. Murchie and his family have been loyal supporters and close friends of the program for many years and we are thrilled that they continue to invest in our student-athletes and the future of UB Athletics."
Murchie is owner and president of Lackawanna Products Corporation in Clarence. He is a 1975 graduate of UB with a degree in management and also earned his MBA from UB in 1976. He played hockey for the Bulls from 1971-73 and was an assistant coach with the program in 1974. His wife, Deanna, is a 1974 graduate of UB with a degree in public health.
The Murchie family are members of the UB Athletics Shareholders Society, an exclusive giving initiative aimed at securing major gift pledges in support of the enhancement of UB Athletics facilities.
"Our Shareholders are playing a critical role in elevating our status as a destination for recruits and enhancing the overall experience for our student-athletes," Gross said. "Tunney, along with our other Shareholders are quite simply, taking us to another level."
"I would encourage other alumni and supporters to give what they're comfortable with," Murchie added.
For more information on the Shareholder Society or other opportunities to give to UB Athletics please visit www.bullsblueandwhite.com
The official groundbreaking ceremony for the Fieldhouse will take place on Oct. 7 prior to the Bulls' homecoming football game against Western Michigan.
What the Family is Saying:
"I am deeply honored that my family is able to give back to a prestigious institution like the University at Buffalo. This university is a pillar of the Buffalo community and we take great pride in supporting the continual progress in education and athletics." – Tunney's son, Scott Murchie
"It is an absolute honor to have our family name on the new field house. University at Buffalo has provided our family with multiple opportunities to pursue our dreams, and athletics was often, in some form, tied in with our pursuit. My father came to UB on a hockey scholarship, and that opportunity enabled him to obtain a master's in business, carving the path for a successful career at Lackawanna Products Corporation. My mother earned her Bachelors in Physical Education on the South campus. My brother Nevin had the privilege of a earning his law degree at the University of Buffalo. Although I did not graduate from UB, I had the opportunity to play Division I Men's Club Ice Hockey While completing prerequisite courses for medical school. The Murchie family recognizes the importance of collegiate athletics, not only as a path to professional athletic opportunities, but more importantly, an avenue to pursue non-athletic professional careers. We wish the UB Bulls football department the best of success." – Tunney's son, Brent Murchie
"As an alumnus of UB (BA 2005, JD 2011), I am so proud to have my family's name attached to this project. It marks yet another important milestone in UB's push to become a top tier academic and athletic institution. I am especially proud of my father and his accomplishments since graduating from UB. My father was a student athlete, and I know he loves supporting the careers of current and future student athletes. He's a very special man." – Tunney's son, Nevin Murchie
"We are very proud to be associated with the University at Buffalo, an institution that has given back so much to our family. The naming of the Fieldhouse is very reflective of my father, a man of humility who is centered around his family and supports opportunities to create positive impactful differences in the lives of others." – Tunney's daughter, Brittany (Murchie) Acevedo