Regent Larson gift

The University of Minnesota today announced a $15 million gift to Gopher Athletics from David and Janis Larson. The gift will help fund a new Football Performance Center, which will house football offices, locker rooms, training areas, a weight training center and other areas designed to provide the University of Minnesota football program and student-athletes all of the tools needed to achieve greatness on and off the field.

Larson, a retired Cargill executive and University of Minnesota Regent, died Oct. 25, 2014. He was a lifelong advocate of the University after graduating with a degree in Political Science.

“David and Jani have been such wonderful supporters of the University of Minnesota, in every way possible,” said Director of Gopher Athletics Norwood Teague. “We simply can’t do enough to thank them for their generous and unwavering support and this latest donation to our Facilities Campaign is just one example of their commitment to this University and its students.”

The Larson family will be honored Saturday, January 24 during the first half of the Golden Gophers 1:15 p.m. men’s basketball game at Williams Arena.

“Dave and Jani’s commitment to the University of Minnesota and its students is remarkable and we cannot thank them enough for sharing their lives and legacy with Dave’s alma mater,” said University of Minnesota President Eric Kaler. “Dave loved Gopher football and Gopher Athletics so it’s fitting that we honor them this weekend at Williams Arena. Their gift will make a lasting impression on U of M student athletes for years to come.”

The Larsons shared a deep love of the University and Dave often said that higher education was the foundation for his successful professional career. To honor that legacy, the Larsons endowed a scholarship at the U in 2008 to address David and Janis' concern about the rising cost of education for middle class families. Since its inception, the U has admitted 350 Larson Scholars.

Editor’s note: This donation is part of the confirmed $65 million raised to date for the Athletics Department Facilities Campaign. More information is available at

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