10 College Football Teams with Coolest Facilities

David KenyonFeatured ColumnistJuly 11, 2016

10 College Football Teams with Coolest Facilities

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    Brian Davies/Associated Press

    College football teams try to equip their programs with the latest and greatest upgrades, and a school's facilities are perhaps the greatest example.

    From indoor and outdoor practice fields to weight rooms and training rooms to training tables, programs take immense pride in delivering the best for their football players.

    While this off-field competition can reach seemingly unnecessary levels, the result of mega-million projects are top-notch buildings.

    The following list highlights 10 of the best current and soon-to-be-completed facilities in college football.


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    As long as head coach Nick Saban is winning championships, he'll sign the best prospects. Still, there's no shortage of flair at Alabama.

    Home to a 37,000-square-feet, $9 million weight room, Tuscaloosa offers everything and more a player needs to succeed—plus a few waterfalls in the hydrotherapy pool, for good measure.

    The 97,000-square-foot Hank Crisp Indoor Facility includes a 130-yard-long field, so the Crimson Tide claim the largest practice area in the country. Alabama has four outdoor practice fields.

    Combine that with four national titles in the last seven years, and the football program lacks nothing of importance—or luxury.


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    Clemson is a prime example of why this is considered an arms race.

    Although the school already has excellent facilities, it's pouring in $55 million to build an elaborate venue exclusive to the team.

    "It'll be [the players'] home on campus, when they're not in class," a Clemson spokesman told the Washington Post.

    Thanks to a replica of "The Hill," an indoor mini-golf course, barbershop, sand volleyball pit and outdoor kitchen area, Clemson is making sure players never leave.

    Recruits will absolutely be drawn to the school because of the facilities. Consistent success on the field isn't hurting, either.


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    Carlos Osorio/Associated Press

    First and foremost, Michigan Stadium is the largest stadium in the country. In 2013, more than 115,000 people filled the Big House to watch the Wolverines battle Notre Dame under the lights.

    But game day is a small portion of the grandeur.

    The Al Glick Field House and Oosterbaan Field House both house an indoor practice field. Within the last decade, the school renovated the locker room and weight room. Mark Snyder of the Detroit Free Press noted head coach Jim Harbaugh is pushing for another update.

    Harbaugh brought a winning attitude to Ann Arbor and provided a renewed spark in the fanbase. That support will undoubtedly be seen in monetary gifts and, subsequently, future projects.

Notre Dame

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    Joe Raymond/Associated Press

    Nicknamed "The Gug," the Guglielmino Athletics Complex is home to Notre Dame's football program.

    There's a 25,000-square-foot weight room and the rehab center on the first floor, while head coach Brian Kelly's second-level office overlooks the outdoor practice field. The second floor holds the Irish's recruiting lounge—unsurprisingly decked out in championship banners.

    Notre Dame's indoor facility is located in the Loftus Sports Center. The building serves as the practice home for other varsity sports, too.

    Throw in an 80,000-plus-seat stadium—which is currently undergoing a face-lift to further increase capacity—and it's no wonder South Bend attracts major talent.

Ohio State

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    Joe Maiorana-USA TODAY Sports

    Most recently, Ohio State overhauled its locker room. The update was a great complement to the school's many practice fields and 100,000-seat stadium that is always filled.

    "There are so many good things here, so we just tried to enhance," head coach Urban Meyer said, per Dan Duggan of NJ Advance Media. "It wasn't one of those things where we had to implode and start over."

    According to the school, the Woody Hayes Athletic Center boasts nearly 15,000 square feet for strength and conditioning. The medical and equipment areas were upgraded, too.

    The Buckeyes have regained powerhouse status under Meyer, and the facility is also a national leader.

Oklahoma State

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    "Spectacular" is probably not an adequate adjective for the facilities at Oklahoma State.

    In 2009, the Pokes completed renovations on Boone Pickens Stadium, a "cozy" 60,000-seat stadium with the tightest sidelines in college football, according to the school.

    The Sherman E. Smith Training Center contains the indoor practice area and three full-length outdoor fields—two of which are grass and one of artificial turf.

    And as seen in the accompanying video, Oklahoma State has tremendous locker, weight, training and meeting rooms in addition to lounges and offices.


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    Oregon has regularly upgraded campus because of Phil Knight's generosity, but the football program is a primary beneficiary.

    Beyond the countless uniform combinations, the Nike founder—who ran track at the school in the 1950shas donated millions and millions of dollars. In 2014, Josh Peter of USA Today Sports reported Knight's contributions were north of $300 million.

    As a result, the Ducks have renovated the noise-filled Autzen Stadium and built the Hatfield-Dowlin Complex. Inside, the players have access to their lockers, the weight room, a cafeteria and saunas. Oregon practices in the Moshofsky Center.

    Thanks to head coaches Mike Bellotti, Chip Kelly and Mark Helfrich, the return on investment is a perennial contender.


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    For a couple of decades, Tennessee drew prospects to Knoxville via the Neyland-Thompson Sports Center. That building—as well as Neyland Stadium, which sits on the Tennessee Riveris still an A-plus location, but the Vols weren't done.

    In 2013, the school added the Anderson Training Center. It connects to both the previous facility and the two outdoor practice fields.

    The ATC includes the players' lounge, a hydrotherapy room, a 7,000-square-foot locker room with ventilated lockers and a 22,000-square-foot weight room.

    Tennessee's on-field success in 2016 could match the excellence of its facilities. That's the hope for Vols fans, at least.

Texas A&M

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    Shortly after Texas A&M joined the SEC, the school didn't just give its facilities a face-lift. No, the Aggies underwent reconstructive surgery.

    Kyle Field now lists a capacity above 100,000, while the Bright Football Complex had a $20.8 million renovation project and houses the Slocum Nutrition Center, which ran a $12 million tab.

    The football team practices inside the McFerrin Athletic Center and outside at the Coolidge Grass Practice Fields. Additionally, the Aggies spent plenty of time at the Davis Player Development Center.

    Overall, Texas A&M has an impressive collection of facilities.


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    Highlighted by the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum—a two-time host of the Olympics and potentially a three-time venueUSC has protected tradition while keeping up with the times.

    Completed in 2012, the John McKay Center is home to the football offices, locker, meeting, weight and training rooms, as well as the academic center and lounges.

    There's even an underground workout field at the McKay, which overlooks Howard Jones Field, where the Trojans practice outside.

    USC won't have any issues attracting prospects because of the facilities, and an on-field resurgence may seal the deal.

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