A man wearing a hard hat looks out at bleachers in a football stadium.
Demolition crews have arrived at Ryan Field as NU moves ahead with rebuilding its stadium.
Shun Graves/The Daily Northwestern

Gallery: Last glimpse at nearly century-old Ryan Field before demolition

During its nearly century-long reign, Ryan Field witnessed Northwestern’s greatest victories and saddest heartbreaks, its stands filled, or often half-filled, with cheering students.

But, on Thursday, the hulking citadel of NU athletics sat in solemn silence. Demolition equipment waited just outside, ready to tear it all down.

The equipment rolled in last week as NU has moved quickly to raze its football stadium, first opened in 1926. The University’s contentious project to rebuild Ryan Field by late 2026 begins with the four-month, piece-by-piece demolition set to begin any moment.

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