With the recent success of the Notre Dame men’s and women’s basketball programs, it’s been to the frustration of many an Irish hoops fan that the perpetually-disappointing football program was given a $400M addition to its stadium while the teams succeeding on the hardwood continued to practice in the basement known as “The Pit.”
So, Mike Coffey’s choice of title for this announcement on ND Nation couldn’t have been more fitting, as it truly is sweet to see the much-talked-about and much-procrastinated-and-ignored plans for an upgrade to the basketball teams’ practice facilities finally coming to life.
Coffey shares portions of an “ask book” that has been sent to specific donors who Notre Dame thinks would be interested in donating to the cause, and features floor plans and beautiful mock images of a complete remodeling of what is currently the Rolfs Student Center into the “Rolfs Basketball Center.”
Coffey points out that the current Rolfs Student Center is 77,000 square feet, meaning this basketball facility will likely end up on-par with various blue chip programs’ own, including schools like Indiana (67,000 square feet), Duke (56,000), and Louisville (60,000).
The floor plans and images show a facility complete with strength and conditioning areas, film rooms, player lounges, locker rooms, sports medicine, coaches’ offices, conference rooms, a “hall of fame,” and more.
The actual basketball practice area consists of two full-length basketball courts (one for each program) and 6 half-court baskets that can be used for shooting, drills, etc. (3 for each program).
The pictures are absolutely awesome, so be sure to click into each one to see full-size views of the different areas of the facility. It’s really cool to see recent stars like Pat Connaughton, Jerian Grant, Skylar Diggins, etc., adorning the walls as well, as those are the ND basketball legends that will really resonate with current high school prospects.
Needless to say, once this comes to fruition and can be shown to recruits, it will be huge for the two programs, as both certainly struggle to keep up in recruiting due to their outdated facilities.
Considering the success that Muffet McGraw and Mike Brey have had at Notre Dame, it’s a shame it took so long for the support to come in terms of facilities upgrades. However, the important thing is that it looks like the wheels are finally in motion, and if what Coffey says about this being done for the 2018-2019 season is true, it will be huge in continuing the momentum that Brey and McGraw have built over the past few years.