Harmon Family Football Park
Sept. 28, 2010
"Now we have a practice facility that a championship football program like Ohio State University should have."
Those words were overheard on the first day of Ohio State's 2010 fall camp from a longtime college football coach and administrator as he stood on the state-of-the-art and classy Harmon Family Football Park. The words weren't necessarily intended for anyone to hear, but they ring so true.
About the Facility
The Harmon Family Football Park, named for Jole and Jim Harmon of Toledo and their family, provides Ohio State football with one of the finest, if not the finest, practice fields in all of college football...perhaps even all of football. The Football Park includes textbook practice fields and features one awesome and aesthetic attribute after another.
All this and more for current and future Buckeyes and coaches because one benevolent family, one gracious family from northeastern Ohio that truly loves The Ohio State University, wanted to make a lasting impact to the football program. Their $5 million gift to the Department of Athletics and the football program funded the construction of the $5.2 million park.
"This is such a special opportunity for the Harmon family," Jim Harmon said while enjoying the festivities at the 2010 Big Ten Conference football media days. "It is such an honor for us to be able to give to the Ohio State Department of Athletics and the football program. This facility will have our name on it forever. That is something that is very special to us."
That is something that is very special to The Ohio State University, as well. The University honored the Harmons into the Pay Forward Society during the Marshall Football Game. And generations of future Buckeyes will be honored to play in the Harmon Family Football Park.
"The gift from the Harmon family displays the strong belief they have in the program," Dane Sanzenbacher, a senior co-captain from Toledo, Ohio, said. "They believe in the direction of this program."
To cap off this tremendous project, Ohio State designed a truly unique stewardship engagement to honor the Harmons: a brick laying ceremony. The idea actually came from Jim Harmon, when he mentioned in passing what a thrill it would be to lay the last brick. From that point on, it became a total team effort to create a remarkable experience for the entire Harmon family.
Collaboratively planned by University Development's Principal Gifts, at the time led by Shelia Smith, and the Facility Operations & Development team, this unique event was capped off with the laying of the projects final bricks by Jim Harmon, Coach Tressel and Gene Smith. Following the ceremony, Coach Tressel signed commemorative bricks to recognize this special occasion. With the units firmly in place, the football team can now practice on four state-of-the art fields equal to the donors' name that honors the facility.
About Martin Jarmond:
Prior to joining OSU, Jarmond served as the Assistant Athletic Director for Development and Director of Regional Giving at Michigan State University. During his seven years, Jarmond helped the Spartan Fund set new fundraising records in each year of his tenure and was instrumental in the implementation of premium seating. He played an active role during the $1.2B Campaign for MSU, helping athletics raise over $126M.
Nationally, Jarmond serves as the only non athletic director on the Division I-A Athletics Directors McLendon Scholarship Steering Committee.
A native of Fayetteville, NC, Jarmond graduated from the University of North Carolina at Wilmington with a Bachelors degree in Communication Studies and a Minor in Leadership Studies in 2001. While at UNCW, he played basketball for the Seahawks, earning All-CAA Academic honors and helped guide the Seahawks to their first ever NCAA tournament appearance in 2000. Jarmond earned two Masters Degrees in Business Administration (2002) and Sports Administration (2003) from Ohio University in Athens, OH.