USC Shows Off John McKay Center, Construction To Be Completed By August
USC's new $70M campus athletic facility is "due to be completed by the start of football training camp in August," and Senior Associate AD Mark Jackson Thursday "provided a tour of the facility to media members," according to Michael Lev of the ORANGE COUNTY REGISTER. Among the main floor highlights of the 110,000-square foot John McKay Center is "a two-story-high, customized video wall that's the equivalent of 278 15-inch flat-screen TVs" that will have "a dedicated team producing content." Live content "also will be shown on the wall, and recruits can play video games on it." Lev writes "the primary thrust of the main floor is academics." It includes a room "with 25 tutorial computer stations, an additional computer lab and library-like study area." The main floor will also "feature an outdoor atrium honoring McKay," the late USC coach and college football HOFer. The facility's upper floor "is mostly devoted to football" and includes "coaches' offices, team meeting rooms, a team auditorium and an outdoor dining area." The lower level "is devoted to sports performance, including a weight room, nutrition center, sports-medicine area and 40-yard-long AstroTurf field." Jackson described the McKay Center as "phase one of a major overhaul of our athletic facilities." USC also plans a $30-35M renovation of 41-year-old Heritage Hall, "which will become a 'cutting-edge museum-like space' for the public." The two buildings "will be connected underground" and the school "will revamp the courtyard between them." The school also "will renovate its swim stadium and put in a new field and track at the track stadium" (ORANGE COUNTY REGISTER, 4/6). In California, Miguel Melendez notes "there are no plans to tear down the 70,000 square foot Heritage Hall with the new addition." Jackson said that USC "plans on keeping the integrity of the tradition-rich building by also giving it a considerable renovation." The McKay Center "will allow for re-allocation of space in Heritage Hall for athletic department staff as well as an expansion of the athletic equipment room, new lounge area for student-athletes and a new TV studio" (SAN GABRIEL VALLEY TRIBUNE, 4/6).