Nebraska facility gives U glimpse of what it hopes for

  • Article by: AMELIA RAYNO , Star Tribune
  • Updated: February 7, 2012 - 12:02 PM

The $18.7 million Hendricks Training Complex serves as both a practice arena, a place to relax and a recruiting tool.

hide

Inside the locker room at the University of Nebraska's $18.7 million Hendricks Training Complex.

Photo: Scott Bruhn, University of Nebraska

CameraStar Tribune photo galleries

Cameraview larger

LINCOLN, NEB. - Some look at a college basketball practice facility and see a necessary part of a successful puzzle. Others see an effective tool for netting the best young players. Still others look at it as a simple ode to excess.

Gophers men's coach Tubby Smith looks at these lavish complexes and wonders why -- in a Big Ten Conference where every school except Minnesota and Northwestern has one -- his team still lags behind. Perhaps Smith wants evidence of the same sentiment Nebraska coach Doc Sadler sees in the Cornhuskers' 80,000-square-foot Hendricks Training Complex, which is new this season.

"Commitment is something everybody talks about, but this shows our commitment," Sadler said shortly after the October unveiling.

With the Gophers playing at Nebraska on Sunday, Smith and his staff and players were able to tour the facility over the weekend. A separate tour Monday revealed what they saw: The $18.7 million addition to the Bob Devaney Sports Center is at once stunning, functional and over-the-top.

There are separate identical, sound-proofed practice courts -- which stretch full-court on all four sides -- for men's and women's basketball, with off-court auxiliary rooms to treat injuries. A classroom has theater-style seats with swivel-arm tables facing a wall-size video screen.

A 5,000-square-foot weight room connects to an area where players can get supplements and shakes. Locker rooms have hot and cold pools and towel warmers, and iPads are built into every player's locker. Each custom shower stall has built-in speakers and multiple shower heads.

Every bathroom stall contains a television, and flatscreens are peppered throughout nearly every space in the complex. A players lounge contains 400 inches' worth of TVs on one wall, mounted above a wide, custom-built couch. There is a pool table, a kitchen and massage chairs.

"They wanted a place where the players could relax, hang out, be with each other, more or less," team spokesman Shamus McKnight said.

But of course, it's more than that. McKnight said the Huskers hope the facility -- which was fully funded by alumni donations and fundraising -- will be a major recruiting tool, particularly for a men's team that went 7-9 in the Big 12 last season and currently sits 11th in the 12-team Big Ten.

The same formula could be helpful for the Gophers. Smith reiterated last week that a practice facility is a "need." At a proposed price tag of $15 million, such a facility will require major fundraising and be a top agenda item for the next athletic director.

"Fundraising is always a huge process, especially in this day in time," Smith said. "In this community, the competition for the entertainment dollars is unbelievable with so many pro teams and colleges. But we'll get [a practice facility] done."

  • get related content delivered to your inbox

  • manage my email subscriptions

ADVERTISEMENT

Atlanta 7 FINAL
Pittsburgh 5
Miami 5 FINAL
St. Louis 3
Baltimore - LP: K. Gausman 4 FINAL
Detroit - WP: J. Nathan 6
Minnesota 4 FINAL
Boston 5
NY Yankees 5 FINAL
Tampa Bay 6
Philadelphia 1 FINAL
Toronto 4
Cincinnati 13 FINAL
Cleveland 2
Los Angeles 9 FINAL
Chicago WSox 6
Kansas City 3 FINAL
Seattle 0
Seattle 1 FINAL
Milwaukee 15
San Diego 3 FINAL
Arizona 3
NY Mets 8 FINAL
Washington 3
LA Angels 8 FINAL
Chicago Cubs 4
Colorado 3 FINAL
Texas 6
Oakland 6 FINAL
San Francisco 4
Indiana 107 FINAL
Milwaukee 111
Pittsburgh 2 FINAL
Carolina 5
New Jersey 2 FINAL(OT)
Washington 3
Los Angeles 3 FINAL
NY Islanders 2
Arizona 4 FINAL(OT)
Buffalo 3
Anaheim 3 FINAL(OT)
Boston 2
Nashville 3 FINAL
Tampa Bay 2
San Jose 6 FINAL
Detroit 4
NY Rangers 5 FINAL
Ottawa 1
Florida 4 FINAL
Toronto 1
Montreal 2 FINAL
Winnipeg 5
Colorado 4 FINAL
Vancouver 1
Wichita State 70 FINAL
Notre Dame 81
North Carolina 72 FINAL
Wisconsin 79
Evansville 89 FINAL
Louisiana 82
West Virginia 39 FINAL
Kentucky 78
Xavier 60 FINAL
Arizona 68
St Johns 55 FINAL
Villanova 63
NC State 79 FINAL
Temple 80
Missouri 55 FINAL
Michigan 65
Oral Roberts 64 FINAL
Louisiana 65
Duquesne 39 FINAL
West Virginia 60
Ole Miss 70 FINAL
Middle Tennessee 82
Northern Colorado 60 FINAL
UCLA 74
St Marys-CA 77 FINAL
Sacramento St 69
Connect with twitterConnect with facebookConnect with Google+Connect with PinterestConnect with PinterestConnect with RssfeedConnect with email newsletters

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

question of the day

Poll: Who is your favorite team in the NCAA men's hockey tournament?

Weekly Question

ADVERTISEMENT

 
Close