The arms race for facilities has been the most intense in the ACC at FSU and
UNC, where the football facilities are just lavish, but the other schools,
including Duke with the various new facilities, aren't standing still
either.Â State has the ESA, Maryland is builidng a new basketball arena,
UVa is trying to do one too, and then there's Clemson.
Clemson has announced a 5 year campaign to raise
30 million dollars for
Alone among the ACC until FSU showed up, Clemson is first and foremost a
football school, and Death Valley will get a lot of this money. Part of the goal
is to put enough distractions in so that families will feel comfortable. They're
talking about a "Fun Zone." The DBAP in Durham has something like this
for kids and parents, so that they may enjoy the social aspects of baseball, and
the festivities, without much distraction from the game itself.
For Littlejohn, well here's the comments from the website:
|The proposed new exterior for Littlejohn, looking somewhat like a Walmart|
"Plans for the ClemsonÂs Littlejohn Coliseum area are even more ambitious. From behind the west end zone of the football stadium, the street there will be replaced with a brick road for a look of continuity that flows into the Littlejohn Coliseum. There, renovations will include improving the sight lines, installing a new sound system, and reformatting the seating area. The interior
upgrades also will include more rest rooms, expanded concourses and concession areas.
"From there, Littlejohn would connect to an annex sub-structure to include team rooms, locker rooms, rest rooms, officialsÂ locker rooms, and additional practice facilities to allow menÂs
and womenÂs basketball teams to practice at the same time. Also, to alleviate any further congestion in the weight room at Jervey athletic center brought on by recent additional sports
teams, the new annex sub-structure would include a weight room that would accommodate sports other than menÂs and womenÂs basketball."
To do all this, Clemson has naturally turned to the firm which revolutionized
baseball stadia design with Camden Yards. Theyr'e also the folks who did the
DBAP, by the way.
Can they do it? Clearly Clemson is feeling some pressure to compete:
"Clemson HAS to do it. There are only so many dollars out there, and Clemson sports need to be able to compete with the Panthers, the Braves, the Greenville Bi-Lo Center and other teams enjoying the finest that their first-class facilities have to offer. To attract those funds, itÂs going to take a concerted effort to attract blue-chip student-athletes and fans who see something more magical than they see at the Dean Dome in Chapel Hill, and the new ThunderDome in Raleigh.
Thunder Dome? Do they know something we don't?
Anyway, as the Tigerpride site rightly concludes, sign of the times.Â
Turning Clemson into sort of an athletic amusement park is an interesting idea,
but they'll need more than that to sell it to people.Â 20 years or so of
Bowden magic wouldn't hurt.Â Basketball - well when it comes to Clemson, we
never hold our breaths.