Matthes-Hopkins Track Complex
The Matthes-Hopkins Track Complex, Liberty’s on-campus outdoor track & field facility, was completed in 1989, the first year the Flames competed at the NCAA Division I level. Located adjacent to Williams Stadium, the complex is named for the founder of the Liberty track & field program, Jake Matthes, and Liberty’s first women’s track coach, Ron Hopkins.
The facility includes an eight-lane, 400-meter polyurethane track as well as four long jump/triple jump pits, three pole vault runways, a high jump apron, two javelin runways, two shot put rings and a new hammer/discus cage. Located on the hill overlooking the south end of the track, the hammer/discus throwing area was completed in time for the 2007 season.
Six of the 15 Big South Men’s and Women’s Outdoor Track & Field Championships have been held at the Matthes-Hopkins Track Complex, including the inaugural event in 1994. The Flames and Lady Flames have swept the conference team titles all six times, most recently in 2007. The facility also regularly plays host to high school championship meets.
One of the most memorable moments in facility history came on March 31, 2007, when Liberty’s own Josh McDougal ran a 3:57.46 mile, cracking the 4:00 barrier for the first time. He holds the track records for the mile, 5K and 10K. Other notable names who have competed on the track include U.S. National Team standouts Bershawn Jackson and LaShawn Merritt.