Two larger-than-life statues took their place outside the Charlotte 49ers football stadium earlier this week. The identical 12-foot statues, which depict a quarterback in motion, adorn stadium entrances at opposing end zones. Long-time University benefactor Irwin Belk commissioned the sculptures, created by artist Jon Hair.
"Of all the pieces I've done, this guy right here is really my favorite," said Hair, who noted he has done 40 monumental sculptures. "I love the size and scale and power of the piece. I love that's he's moving and running in space. It adds a lot of power and excitement to the piece. We wanted to do a quarterback on the move so we could really get a dynamic force to the piece. I love that he's on one foot and ready to hit his target downfield.”
The football sculptures adds to the University’s extensive collection of athletic statuary. The University also has sculptures representing baseball, men's and women's basketball, distance/cross country, golf, men's and women's soccer, softball, men's and women's tennis, men's and women's track and field and volleyball. All of these statues resulted from Belk’s generosity.
The University’s 15,300-seat football stadium was completed this past October. The Charlotte 49ers finished their fall practices and scrimmages in 2012 in preparation for their inaugural season in 2013. The 49ers first game will be at home Aug. 31 against Campbell University. The 49ers will compete as an FCS Independent in 2013 and 2014 before making the quick transition to FBS football as a member of Conference USA in 2015.
More images can be viewed at the University’s Flickr feed.