UCSB’s Campus Events Center was built in 1979. The
Thunderdome was born in eight years later.
As Gaucho basketball evolved into a Big West power, the building
in which it made its mark also evolved, emerging as one of the
nation’s most feared venues. Few arenas inspire fear.
The Thunderdome is one of them.
Christened The Thunderdome, with a nod to the Mel Gibson film
Mad Max Beyond Thunderdome, because of sheer volume of
noise it produces, the home to UCSB basketball became a nightmare
to visitors. Opponents not only had to deal with great Gaucho
teams, but they also had to handle a level of noise beyond what
their imaginations could muster.
It’s humble exterior belies the Thunderdome’s inner
beauty and power. It has become more than an arena,
it’s become legend.