Anyone wondering what all the commotion is that is going on out in the commuter lot? It is the construction of Bryant University’s new Strength and Conditioning Center. The project began this semester and will continue to be under construction until July so it will be fully functional once fall sports arrive back on campus next year.
Intended to be 10,400 square feet, the building is being designed by Cutler Associates, an architecture company based out of Worcester, Massachusetts. According to the company’s description, the structure will feature large glass exterior windows the whole height of the building. All sports teams will be able to use the new facility for weight training instead of the Jarvis Weight room in the basement of the Chace Center. The state of the art appearance of the building as well as its functionality isn’t all that speaks to Bryant University’s dedication to its athletic teams—the building’s large size competes with other top athletics buildings in the region.
The facility will especially benefit the school’s football and men’s lacrosse teams by bringing their practices to another physical level. When head men’s lacrosse coach Mike Pressler was asked about the construction project, he cited the ability of an even greater efficiency during his team’s practices that will come with the new building as something to be excited about. The extended space and the 24 platforms will allow more athletic teams to work out at the same time and with better equipment. This conditioning will likely improve on-field practices as well.
Coach Pressler also sees this building as a representation of the support that the future of athletics, and particularly men’s lacrosse, is finally receiving from the school.
“The weight room is paramount to our success on the field, our success in recruiting, and just huge for Bryant lacrosse and Bryant athletics in general,” says Pressler. “…having state of the art equipment in there is certainly a glitz in the recruitment—this will catch people’s attention.” Finishing up a tour of Bryant for potential new athletes at the new facility would definitely be a selling point, according to Pressler.
Overall, the Strength and Conditioning Center is a small step in the continued growth of Bryant University’s twenty-two Division 1 Athletic teams. The switch to playing for Division 1 in the Northeast Conference came in 2007 for the school, though the teams were not eligible for any championships until 2012. Since then, the programs have been working hard to grow and develop. Teams on campus have been proving their worth of the Division 1 status, with nine NEC titles thus far (six from tournament play). The Center will be the biggest step Bryant University has taken to improve and support its athletics from a financial standpoint since the move up in competition.
This building isn’t the only thing Athletics will have going for it next season though; a new indoor field facility is in the works as well, which will be positioned past the Bulldog Soccer Field and should be completed within the upcoming year.