Facilitating the indoor practice process

The UGAAA Board meets today to hear about plans for an indoor practice facility.  As this article indicates, it’s been a long time coming.

“The Athletic Association will complete an Indoor Practice Facility behind Butts-Mehre Heritage Hall, which will enable football, track and other outdoor sports to practice year-round in a climate-controlled facility. Architectural drawings and schematics are being drawn up now and we have begun securing the necessary funds to begin this project. The initial estimate of the facility is $12 million. Projections for completion have yet to be determined but we are hoping to break ground on this project immediately.”

That statement from UGA regarding a new indoor practice facility was not issued recently. In fact, it was written about 17 years ago. It was included in the Bulldogs’ 1998-99 annual report to donors.

“We had a plan,” Vince Dooley, Georgia’s athletic director at the time, acknowledged this past weekend. “The indoor facility itself was excellent and was just what we wanted.”

Better late than never, I suppose.

McGarity has been hush-hush about it…

“Due to open-records requests, there are no renders or anything other than spoken words,” Georgia Athletic Director Greg McGarity said. “Open records have changed our approach on projects.”

There will be nothing to see on Tuesday either, McGarity claimed. Those architects are expected to make some sort of presentation to the full board when it meets at the Georgia Center for Continuing Education.

… but in any event, it sounds like there won’t be anything more than a discussion of plans.

Finalization is off in the future, but Seth Emerson has heard some chatter about the site.

It is not clear whether the location for the facility will be formally approved, but one site has emerged as a possibility: The area just beyond the existing outdoor practice fields, off of Lumpkin Street, leading up to Stegeman Coliseum.

Other locations had not been ruled out as of last month: An off-campus area off Milledge Avenue, or tearing up one of the existing outdoor fields and building it there. But the location off Lumpkin seems a good compromise, keeping the existing facilities but not having it far from the Butts-Mehre building.

So expect to hear a lot of “it’s moving forward” talk, enough for the coaches to have something to sell to recruits (or at least distract them from the negative recruiting they’ll be getting about how Georgia will soon be the only program in the conference without an IPF).

There’s probably some other talk you can expect to hear soon, too.

The source of the funds could also be revealed Tuesday, although it is expected to be a mix of private and UGA reserve funds, much like the recently completed renovation of baseball’s Foley Field. That could just over $12 million, with $5 million coming through fundraising.

Hey, man, ‘ya gotta help a reserve fund out.

54 Comments

Filed under Georgia Football

54 responses to “Facilitating the indoor practice process

  1. McGarity is being dragged by market forces, scquemishly and reluctantly, to an end that means spending money that he doesn’t perceive to be necessary. Never mind that it places him at the bottom of the SEC as regards a measurable financial and infrastructural resource.

    Where have we heard this before?

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  2. Spike

    Where off Lumpkin Street ?

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    • The other Doug

      The description of the location doesn’t make sense to me. Isn’t the current IPF at the corner of Pine crest and Rutherford?

      Maybe Seth is talking about the parking lot between the academic center and the baseball field.

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      • Groo posted this photo at another site:

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        • Based on the description, it also sounded like they were talking about closing off part of the side street in front of the Student Academic Center. The parking lot behind Foley is also a prime location — either location will require a new parking deck to make up for the lost surface parking.

          (area I’m describing) –> http://i.imgur.com/7LwmMmf.jpg

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        • Hank

          Well, that would be my first reason to dislike this administration. Extension has been the sacrificial lamb of every budget cut or money saving move for the last 30 years. This picture says they are going to give up their home so the football team can practice the few days a year when the weather doesn’t cooperate. If it were the previous administration, that wouldn’t surprise me one damn bit. We will see if it is more important to UGA to make it more convenient for the football team or for the Cooperative Extension Service. It is only a service that reaches out to every county in the state to provide assistance to the regular folk’s needs.

          If they shut that facility down to make a practice field, I can only imagine they will not relocate those employees. Another good reason to cut some numbers. To hell with helping the state’s citizens, it’s raining outside and driving all the way to S. Milledge would be a burden on the highest paid staff in the state government, or it’s best athletes.

          Damn, did that hit a nerve? Who the hell is groo?

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          • groo is another Georgia blogger. He wasn’t advocating there, just drawing a map.

            And while we’re on the subject of other Georgia bloggers, you might find this post by Tyler over at Georgia Sports Blog pertinent.

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            • Hank

              Damn, you are killing me!! That first picture in Tyler’s post is worse, it includes both buildings. I know he said something about new buildings – that would be a first. The latter part of the post is where I was imagining it before hearing Milledge mentioned. I could live with that. Exhale, whooo…

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          • sUGArdaddy

            Hank, I’m a graduate and appreciate every aspect of the University, but it’s the football team that keeps everything afloat. Competing at the highest level helps us have even more revenue for every sport and academic endeavor. Putting it off South Milledge would be a colossal mistake. Rounding up 120 football players, equipment and staff is an endeavor. If it’s right there, the first time lightning strikes, you simply jog to the indoor facility. No buses, no wasted time, no administrative nightmare. Recruits don’t want to see a facility 5 miles away.

            And, after all, this is a UGA football blog.

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            • Hank

              Sorry, sUGAr, but the football team does not keep everything afloat. This university, that we both graduated from and has and does employ my families and friends, is a land grant university. It was chartered by the state to educate and help it’s citizens. The amount of money the football team contributes to the university as a whole pales in comparison to the amount of money that state’s taxpayers contribute. The amount of good the football team does for this state’s people pales in comparison to the amount of good the Extension Service does for the people who support it. Look up UGA Extension in your county and pay them a visit. If you have any agricultural (even what your lawn needs), home, food, – well look it up – needs, they will help. Mostly for free (well, you already paid for it if you live here). Remember the capital letters in your name, they don’t spell football…

              Exhale… I’ll quit and go back to work (I don’t work for Extension, in case you taxpayers are wondering). Nerve has been touched. Sorry Homer for below.

              GO DAWGS!

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              • sUGArdaddy

                We’ll just have to agree to disagree. You’re spot on that the revenue from tuition and state taxes is larger, but football keeps every other sport afloat. There would be no athletic department without football.

                Moreover, I don’t see it as a huge inconvenience for the Extension office to get a shiny new building as part of this deal. However, building the IPF miles from B-M would be a huge mistake and actually be counter-productive to the potential recruiting advantage.

                Personally, I’d move the track and put it there, but they’re not asking me. Football gets us on TV more than anything else, get’s those academic commercials seen by millions, increases applications, and gets us on the front page more than anything. That doesn’t mean they always get the last ‘say’, but this is just kind of a no-brainer to get it near B-M. We don’t have to be Bama or Auburn, but this is just doing what makes sense.

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                • If we have to build extension a “shiny new building” in order to build another new building then someone is having to pay to build two buildings for us to have an ipf at a location most convenient to the outdoor fields.

                  I would rather the ipf be at tad less convenient and just build one structure in order to have one.

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              • No offense taken. I can appreciate your passion.
                I’ve posted about this before here at GTP.
                I like the practice field that fronts SLumpkin for an IPF. With a piece of the Annex parking/Smith Road. Unless we sprawl out like UF new construction takes place at the expense of existing roads or older buildings. I do think though that your Annex area would be a premium spot. More than enough room for a construction lay down yard and future expansion. It’s construction wouldn’t impact on current football practice facilities. It’s not just about the finished building footprint. But it is ironic that UGa’s Facilities Management Office is located in one of the Annex buildings. 😉
                To be frank I am not that impressed with our past construction projects. We barely utilize 30% of our new classroom space. We still paid for it and pay to maintain it. Who planned that? Someone from China maybe? They do that sort of thing there. My greatest fear is that Bluto may be right. I too, am not that confident in our leadership to “not screw this up”. Are they both tone deaf and arrogant? That is never a good combination.

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              • Gaskilldawg

                Count me in on your team, Hank. I have be contributing and buying season tickets for 35 years. I love UGA sports as much as anyone. However, to suggest that a statutory obligation the University owes to the entire state should be subordinate to football is misplaced

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                • So now building the IPF in that spot is throwing a a statutory obligation the University owes to the entire state out the door? Goodness, I had no idea. And we’re picking teams now?

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                • No, of course not. I was responding to the suggestion that accommodating football should be a higher priority than extension.

                  The university’s mission should always be more important than football. Yes, that is the team I pick in any athletics versus academics contest.

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              • Bazooka Joe

                I don’t think anyone is advocating eliminating the extension…. maybe have to move to new digs (could be better than what they have now ? who knows, certainly not me). I know history says they may get screwed, but that’s not 100% given at this point.

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          • The other Doug

            You aren’t alone in that opinion. I bet the Extension gets a new shiny building somewhere else.

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            • Hank

              If you are any bit familiar with the previous administration and Extension (don’t know about this one) I wouldn’t bet much on a shiny new building. If Adams could have eliminated it altogether, I would bet that he would have. The only thing in his way was the statutory obligation Gaskill mentioned above. (All in my opinion, by the way) Being a land grant university, there is an obligation to provide these services to the citizens of the state. To question sUGAr above, I don’t know if the impact football on television is greater than the children of this state who grow up spending years of contact with the programs Extension offers. It ain’t all about metro Atlanta, and they even offer services there.

              It is just the principle that hit me with the picture. Plowing down the building(s) that has housed the central location for decades, in the one department that reaches out and has employees in every county in the state, because the football team may be inconvenienced. If the picture comes true and they move the Extension offices maybe they will put them somewhere that they won’t have to pay for parking. Who knows, it is just a picture in a blog, right?

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              • Plowing down the building(s) that has housed the central location for decades, in the one department that reaches out and has employees in every county in the state because the football team may be inconvenienced. $$$$$$$$$$$$$$
                C’mon Hank. Best use. Ok? Your teams mission statement can be handled elsewhere. In another building. Yes it can. And if you got problems with your yard in that down time. Google it. Works for me.
                K?

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                • Hank

                  I see you have no idea what they do. Enjoy your evening.

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                • You really think the UGAA is going to spend the money for both an ipf and a “shiny new building” for extension? That would be lots of millions of dollars. Or do you suggest the board of regents spends the money for a shiny new building in order to allow the UGAA to build its practice facility? That likewise would be a lot of money.

                  The extension service does more than give lawn maintence tips, by the way.

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                • Hank

                  He obviously isn’t familiar with their service and didn’t read the links the Senator provided. Reminds me of an old saying, “Often wrong, never in doubt.”

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  3. So what’s this “Open Records have changed our approach” BS out of McGarity? He doesn’t want the fan base to know what B-M is doing?

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    • AG

      Not a donor (directly anyway), but if I was, this would anger me to no end.

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      • Gaskilldawg

        I am a donor for over 30 years and yes, it does anger me.

        What accomplishments has McGarity had as AD? What a disappointING hire.

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    • Go Dawgs!

      Open Records laws weren’t created to make sure that we have access to every piece of paper in the building. They were created to make sure that we know what our government officials are doing with our money, our institutions, and our property. The fact that a high-ranking government official (which Greg McGarity certainly is in overseeing part of the operation of our flagship university) is willing to openly state that he and his staff have changed the way they operate in order to circumvent the spirit of the law is unacceptable. And it’s over such a stupid, minor thing. Everyone knows we’re getting an IPF at this point. What is the possible harm of the public having access to records?

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      • AthensHomerDawg

        First Greg grants that goofy interview and now this. He just can’t seem to get out of his own way..

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        • Mayor

          McGarity is a total dumbass. He would be wise to STFU from now on and hire some young girl to be the spokesperson for the athletics department, then instruct her to say “No comment” to everything like Emmert at the NCAA has done.

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          • Yeah… you’re probably right. Power out in our locale. Im annoyed that my bride recruited me to help Mr. “T” and “Closet Tech Fan” this pm. Trees across their drive and such.

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    • Bazooka Joe

      Evidently not……

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  4. Sam

    From the article it seems like whoever is making the decision can’t wrap their heads over the fact that campus is GOING to look different if you add something that big. I wonder how long it took to put in the SCC. You can’t have change without change. SMH.

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  5. Cojones

    Admittedly, this news and foot dragging (right on, Lrgk9) is spotlighted as cantankerously divine Pome ‘d Rue that is insulting to everyone. They are just now discussing the possibility of the site, not approving the architect’s drawings and beginning construction? This is well beyond dumbassery. This is stalling for stalling’s sake and an affront to us all. Even FU approved funding and started construction when they decided to build one. What are they waiting on, a Taj Mahal drawing to allow pork barrel sampling by all the cronies?

    That this is my University and not the Georgia Legislature remains to be seen. I don’t like this at all and it smacks of people having their noses pushed into the recruiting dirt and saying “We’ll show you” to those who have clamored for this structure for years. Right here is where all UGA’s athletic problems reside.

    When I saw the estimate, my first reaction was “This is a cheap barn” and then to read that the estimate was before Richt ever set foot on this campus? We need a large purgative to clean the impacted colon called Butts-Meyer of the decades old crap that persists in the face of what has now become a great need. This is nonsense. It is mindful of a scam to get money without ever showing a result to a bunch of rubes standing slack-jawed and wearing Freshman beanies.

    Who in hell are they kidding? We have waited three months for this? Now we are going to discuss raising money? What have they been doing all these years – thinking about it?

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    • Mayor

      +1,000,000. This may be your all-time best post, Ballsy.

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    • Bazooka Joe

      ok heres the deal…. I have an inside source (OK, no I don’t, but how many people/post have we seen from folks “who have an inside source” so I had to say it….)
      To me it just looks like McG dragging his feet and he thinks if he drags them long enough, this will move off “front burner status” (but he doesn’t know Jeremy Pruitt does he…) and he can then just keep delaying and never spend the money. He is a bean counter and nothing more…

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  6. So much for the college of family and consumer sciences building.

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    • AthensHomerDawg

      Can’t make an omelet w/o breaking some eggs. Best place for it.

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      • Hank

        Really? Why? Bless your heart.

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        • reipar

          Because you can build the CFCS a brand new building anywhere else and it does not matter. You cannot put the IPF just anywhere. It needs to be close to B-M.

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          • Again, sure someone can pay to build two buildings so we can have a facility the football team will use less than ten times a year that is adjacent to the practice fields. That is what you are talking about; building two buildings in order to add one practice facility.

            I am fine with the idea of building one but at what cost?

            Who is going to pay to build CFCS a new building? Building academic buildings is not a part of the UGA AA mission. If the UGA AA does build the two buildings, how much are the donors and fans willing to pay extra to do so?

            If you say, “let the board of regents pay for a new building so the UGA AA gets a new facility case by its practice fields,” how would you try to sell that to the board of regents? Where is that money coming from? Either from foregoing other projects at UGA or at other university system schools or from your taxes. Think that college presidents and supporters of those other colleges are going to not fight to keep funding you would divert to build a building so the UGA AA could use a site to build its own building?

            You want to build the CFCS a new building in order to build an ipf there? Write your representative and Gov. dean and reassure them that you are fine with a tax increase if it means a football practice building.

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    • The other Doug

      I think Family and Consumer Sciences are in Dawson Hall over by the science buildings.

      Don’t ask me how I know this.

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  7. Bright Idea

    They really missed the boat by not moving baseball to Milledge and building the IPF where Foley sits. Too late for that now. Just a simple lack of vision by those in charge.

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  8. Cojones

    Scorp, you know this bunch, don’t you? Anyone? How about names of all sitting on this “Committee”? “Posthaste” is a new word to be introduced at good ole B-M. It looks like there is need to teach one-on-one.

    Guess I’m still in the Pitchfork Platoon. Call me when you need me. Still have my own slightly used torch.

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  9. Cojones

    Did anyone know that we are in the exact same spot that Damon Evans was 8 yrs ago concerning the IPF? And it was a high priority. I could have moved all that beachfront property that Hahira Dawg has been touting for years by now. Hell, I could have dug the foundation personally and finished the foundation by now. A pole barn crew from Sowega could have finished by now if they had started in Dec.

    This is embarrassing in it’s affrontery and, if anyone remains at B-M from that committee 8 yrs ago, they should be dismissed.

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  10. sUGArdaddy

    Eh…McG’s comments don’t bother me. He’s saying that if they submit drawings of architecture and location that are “concepts” then everyone is going to raise cane and it’s not even real yet. He’s saying he’d rather have it nailed down before releasing it to the public. It’s going to ruffle feathers, but he’d rather the ‘reality’ ruffle feathers than a ‘concept’ that isn’t even nailed down. I don’t know why that’s so hard to understand.

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    • Cojones

      You would be correct if this wasn’t the “same ole same ole” that is overdue by years for some action, not more words and “concepts”. Where in hell has the “concept” been for years?

      Anyone can be backed into a wall and proclaim it’s a wall for everyone who can’t see, but you would think that a shortcut around the wall would be evident by now. Those who can, do. Those who can’t go to B-M.

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    • Scorpio Jones, III

      My take, too, Sugar…. The athletic department does not need weeks of speculative trolling by the AJC (among others) on sites that are not even part of the final plan.

      “We’ll settle the issue, then they can troll.” is what I took him to mean.

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  11. MA

    If it’s just one building, campus can absorb it easily, as I’m guessing Extension could be moved to Tucker Hall (as Social Work has moved to the former O’Malley’s building). Plus, there’s a new Science Learning Center being built (across from Stegman) that will free up some more space.

    All that being said: I wouldn’t be surprised if South Milledge, instead of being the IPF site, becomes to where Extension gets moved (in some sort of building), as that’s closer to where ag’s been moved (although, honestly, so little UGA ag is left on S. Milledge, maybe they’ll get shunted out to Oglethorpe County [or UGA @ Gwinnett]).

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  12. To teach, To serve, and To inquire…. All are a part of the motto! Could the service part not be handled out of specific departments Answer Desk? Gee, This would be a novel concept. ie. the farmer with the impotent bull would just call the Vet School Answer Desk! I see no reason to let the problems within the Cooperative Extension Dept. kill the first good idea to come out of the Athletic Dept for some time! Do we really need a program that has personnel in all 159 counties of our state when a few unpaid (they’re called volunteers) can serve the same function! Horticulture Help desk for the lawns… Vet School answer desk for my bull… School of Social Work for my social needs. Volunteering is something we all ask our future generations to do! Sorry if this steps on Uncle Chet’s job down in Hahira, but the boll weevil problem was solved about 100 yrs. ago! I’m not against Cooperative extension, but there has to be a better way for the University To teach, To Serve and To inquire!

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