Olympic sports take center stage in next phase of UVA Athletics Master Plan
CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. (CBS19 SPORTS) -- With a final $5 million anonymous donation, fundraising for phase two of the UVA Athletics Master Plan was complete with eyes turning now to what is ahead.
Virginia broke ground on the brand new $80 million Football Operation Center at the beginning of June, which is scheduled to finish in the spring of 2024. The new home for UVA football will sit next door to their current home for the past three decades, the McCue Center, which will not last long in the facility's current state.
Phase three of the master plan shifts the focus to the Olympic sports with plans to build a new Olympic Sports Complex alongside a renovated McCue Center. UVA Director of Athletics Carla Williams expects to break ground on phase three in spring of 2023 with a completion date in spring of 2025. The new home for the Cavaliers' Olympic sports will be a major upgrade over the pods in the "Olympic Village" teams are currently in since University Hall, Onesty Hall and The Cage were all demolished in 2018-19.
"[Olympic Sports teams] are going to be direct beneficiaries," Williams said, "The donors that care about our Olympic sports have an opportunity to give to the master plan, and they have given, and we hope they continue to give because that's a huge part of what's next."
The McCue Center renovation will house locker rooms and coaching offices for men's and women's soccer, men's and women's lacrosse, rowing, field hockey, softball as well as track and field. Next door the brand new Olympic Sports Complex will include the strength and conditioning facility among other amenities.
Williams says there has already been plenty of engagement on naming opportunities for the new Olympic sports facility, driven by the amount of success between the programs. Out of the 31 NCAA Championships won by Virginia teams, 28 have come from Olympic sport programs (men's and women's soccer, men's and women's lacrosse, women's swimming and diving, men's tennis, women's rowing and cross country), including five in the last three years.
"I think the success, having a broad based successful athletics program, helps everyone," Williams said, "The success in Olympic sports creates enthusiasm for folks that give to football. The success in football helps for those donors who want to give to the Olympic sports or to scholarships. I think it all works hand-in-hand."