Seal Family Provides $12 Million Gift For Football Complex

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The proposed Leo Seal Jr. Football Complex
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STARKVILLE, Miss. – The Mississippi State athletic department announced Wednesday the largest gift in Bulldog Athletics history, a $12 million donation from the Seal Family Foundation of Gulfport, Miss. The gift will go towards a planned $20-25 million project to build a football training and office facility and renovate the football practice fields. With the Seal gift and donations from over 35 families, more than $17 million has been raised for the project, which will be financed privately through gifts made to the Bulldog Club.


The gift, given by former Bulldog football players, twin brothers Lee and Leo Seal, is made in honor their late father Leo Seal Jr. Seal, Jr. was a former Mississippi State football player, long-time Bulldog Club donor and president of Hancock Bank.


“The generosity of the Seal family has always set a great example of philanthropic donations to Mississippi State, both academics and athletics,” director of athletics Scott Stricklin said. “Not only is it the largest gift in our athletics history, it will most likely be one of the largest gifts in all of college athletics this year. Lee and Leo have carried on the legacy of giving set forth by their father and grandfather.”


Lee and Leo’s father, the aforementioned Leo Seal Jr., provided lead funding for the construction of the Seal M-Club Building, named for Leo Seal Sr., as well as the Leo W. Seal Family Business Complex at the College of Business.


“My father and grandfather both had a love for Mississippi State and an appreciation for the opportunity to play football in the Southeastern Conference and represent their state,” Lee Seal said. “My brother and I both hold that same passion for our alma mater and we’re excited to help the university and our football program.”


The all-encompassing football facility, approximately 80,000 square feet, will include a new weight room, locker room, training room and coaches’ offices. Located on the hill behind the Palmeiro Center, the building will overlook the football practice fields.


“I’m extremely appreciative of the Seals and other families who have helped make this a reality,” head coach Dan Mullen said. “This is a vital addition to our football program. We’ve talked since I’ve arrived at Mississippi State about getting all of our football operations under one roof, allowing us to have daily interaction with each of our players and continuing to develop the family atmosphere around our program – this will accomplish those goals.”


“Since the project will be constructed entirely through private donations and contributions, our staff is actively pursuing additional gifts,” Stricklin said. “We intend to begin construction as soon as we have raised sufficient funding to complete the project. It is because of the donations of those that love this university that we are able to continue to grow and create great experiences for our student athletes, fans and alumni.”



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