Maryland Unveils Plan To Upgrade Multiple Athletics Facilities
Univ. of Maryland AD Damon Evans announced a "new initiative to upgrade most of the school's athletic facilities," according to Jeff Ermann of 247SPORTS.com. The effort includes a new $15M video board at Maryland Stadium and a $25M investment into "improving the facilities of non-revenue sports teams." The field hockey and women's lacrosse stadium will receive a "comprehensive enhancement ... transforming the existing 5,500 square foot facility into a 12,000 square-foot team house." The Stanley Bobb Baseball Player Development Center will become a "state-of-the-art indoor hitting and pitching facility." The projects and fundraising are "unrelated" to Maryland's $200M-plus football facility at Cole Field House and the upcoming $35M basketball practice facility. Maryland's athletic department is operating with $85M in debt. It will "take on an additional" $40M to make the improvements. Evans said the school has "consolidated and refinanced" $31M in facilities debt, allowing it to invest in facilities "while reducing debt payments." Evans indicated that Maryland "has raised" $21M of the $35M budget. Evans said the upgrade to Xfinity Center that will allow Maryland to host concerts "will provide much needed revenue for our athletic department." Meanwhile, Evans said that the new Maryland Stadium video display will be "six times the size of the old one." Evans: "With all the bells and whistles" (247SPORTS.com, 1/8).
NEED MORE FUEL: In DC, Adam Zielonka noted Maryland "will have three facility-improvement campaigns running at the same time." Early stages of the Cole Field House project "have been completed," but as of last October, only $60M of the $210M goal "had been raised." The basketball project had raised $19M from "private donors when it was unveiled that same month" (WASHINGTON TIMES, 1/8).