SAN ANTONIO - The University of Texas at San Antonio celebrated a milestone in the creation of an athletics hub for the university.
UTSA president Taylor Eighmy, along with San Antonio Mayor Ron Nirenberg and other university leaders unveiled its Roadrunner Athletics Center of Excellence (RACE) that they say will help further promote the academic success, health, wellness and performance of the university's student-athletes.
"Great universities have exceptional academic, research and athletics enterprises. The addition of RACE will further propel UTSA to national recognition while advancing our success as Division I competitors in Conference USA and generating a great sense of pride for San Antonio," said Eighmy. "I am grateful for the support of Gene Dawson and the Roadrunner Foundation Board, the leadership of our Vice President for Intercollegiate Athletics Lisa Campos, the partnership of the City of San Antonio, and the generosity of so many donors who helped bring RACE to life."
RACE is a $40.4 million athletic training facility located on 10.8 acres of land near the southwest corner of the university's Main Campus. It was made possible through philanthropic gifts, support from the City of San Antonio's 2017 bond referendum and financing from the Roadrunner Foundation.
The new facility will help enhance UTSA's competitiveness in recruiting and retaining the nation's best student-athletes, coaches and staff. A foundational project in UTSA's 10-year strategic vision to achieve national standing as a Carnegie R1 institution, the nearly 95,000 square-foot facility includes academic spaces, a sports medicine center, strength and conditioning facilities, locker rooms, meeting rooms, staff and coaches' offices, an equipment room and practice fields.
"At UTSA, student success is at the core of everything we do. We are committed to providing all of our students, including our student-athletes, with the very best environment to enable them to achieve their full potential," said Lisa Campos, UTSA vice president for Intercollegiate Athletics and Athletics Director. "Just as UTSA is becoming an exemplar in academics and research, UTSA Athletics is increasingly gaining national recognition. RACE will have a long-lasting impact in further propelling UTSA's stature as a Division I competitor. It is foundational to the Athletics priorities of UTSA's Be Bold capital campaign."
With RACE complete, UTSA will focus its attention on the second phase of its athletics facilities project: the addition of a covered pavilion over the synthetic turf practice field and the construction of a facility at the university's Park West Campus. UTSA is currently in the fundraising stage for that project.
"When I first arrived in San Antonio, my good friend Red McCombs wisely shared with me that our athletics program is the front porch to our university," said Eighmy. "Intercollegiate athletics is integral to the college experience for our student-athletes, our university community and our alumni and friends in San Antonio, in Texas and across the globe. Today is a very special day that is foundational for the future of UTSA Athletics. We look forward to building on this momentum and seizing the opportunities that lie ahead."
Key features of RACE are:
- Academic Spaces - 7,000 square feet of academic space, including a 1,000 square-foot study hall, 10 private tutoring rooms, a computer lab, a classroom and office space for UTSA Athletics Academic Services staff.
- Sports Medicine Center - A sports medicine center with treatment areas, an exam room, a recovery room and office space for athletic trainers and physicians. It also will include an enclosed hydrotherapy room and aquatic therapy equipment for rehabilitation.
- Strength and Conditioning Center - 14,000 square feet of strength and conditioning spaces, including a weight room available to all UTSA student-athletes, with state-of-the-art equipment, a cardio mezzanine, a nutrition center and office space for trainers and coaches. The space will offer direct access to the practice fields.
- Practice Fields - Two parallel football practice fields: one synthetic turf field and one field with natural grass.
- Locker Room - A 7,500 square-foot locker room will include 120 lockers and a players' lounge for the football program.
- Meeting Rooms - Multiple rooms located in the center of the facility to accommodate full team gatherings, as well as specialized meeting spaces.