Built in 1967 as a 45,000 seat facility for the University of Tampa, in 1974 a major expansion was begun thanks to the NFL awarding a franchise to the Tampa Bay region beginning with its 1976 season.  Over 27,000 additional seats were added to the facility, making it one of the largest stadiums in the NFL when the Buccaneers debuted.

Unlike some other USFL facilities, Tampa Stadium was considered state of the art when the Bandits arrived in 1983.  In 1984 the stadium had the distinction of hosting two different professional championship games, hosting Super Bowl XVIII in January followed by the 1984 USFL Championship Game in July.  The NFL would bring the Super Bowl back to Tampa after its 1990 season, awarding the city Super Bowl XXV.

The Bandits departed the scene after the 1985 season, but the Buccaneers continued to play in the facility through 1997, when new team owner Malcolm Glazer began a new era for the Bucs - complete with a new stadium, new helmets and new uniforms.  In 1999, the stadium which Chris Berman had dubbed "The Big Sombrero" was brought down, converted into a parking lot for the Buccaneers new stadium, which had been built adjacent to Tampa Stadium.


Tampa, Florida


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