Hot on the heals of building a $17.5 million indoor practice field last year, Florida is apparently not done upgrading facilities for the Gators football team.
The school unveiled a new $100 million master plan for facilities upgrades on Friday and front and center of that proposal were plans for a brand new football complex just on the edge of the team’s current practice field.
Among the highlights for the Gators are a large lobby area and entrance, a new locker room, a fancy players’ lounge, meeting rooms, various strength, conditioning and training areas, plus a new slate of coaches’ offices. Once the doors are open on the new digs, the team’s current football offices will become athletic department administrative offices while the weight room will be renovated for other sports.
Also in the cards? A new student-athlete dining facility next door to the new football complex and a host of other improvements for various athletic facilities.
“Obviously, it’s a very ambitious project and we’re going to depend on our fundraising efforts to help us with it,” athletic director Jeremy Foley told FloridaGators.com. “Really, it’s a commitment to those three programs, those three coaches. The study also includes opportunities to enhance other facilities that are very important to us, but football, baseball and softball are what we’ve put as our highest priority right now.”
Florida’s latest plans certainly look good on paper (fundraising has yet to commence) and allow the school to catch up to others in the state and around the SEC in the facilities arms race. The project notably marks the final major act for Foley, the school’s long time athletic director who is stepping down in October.
While Foley may not be around to enjoy all the upgrades, you can bet Jim McElwain and his coaching staff are excited about everything announced on Friday.