Washburn’s campus will soon begin construction for a new sports complex. From football and soccer to baseball and volleyball, this new building will allow athletes on Washburn’s campus to train with greater resources than they have previously had access to. Not only will this new building greatly benefit all of the sports teams on Washburn’s campus, but it will also be a clear statement that Washburn’s athletes are ready to compete with the best.
A whopping $6 million has been generously donated to Washburn in order to fund this massive undertaking. The money comes from a variety of sources such as alumni, local businesses and other corporate sources here in Kansas.
This new sports complex has been in the works since the board of regents approved its arrival four years ago when two new sports, cross country and track and field, were added to the university. This new addition of two sports created a need for new and upgraded facilities to be used by Washburn athletes. Now, all 16 sports teams on campus will be able to train and improve themselves under one roof.
Assistant Athletic Director Bruce Steinbrock is optimistic about the new sports facility. He believes that it will change the face of Washburn and perhaps even the city of Topeka as well.
“This will also make an impact on the city of Topeka. By hosting national events and that sort of thing, while the focus certainly is on Washburn athletics, it is going to make a great impact on the rest of the city as well,” Steinbrock said.
This new facility will include a 200 banked oval track that will benefit the track and cross country teams. It will also have an indoor turf field that will primarily be used by football, soccer and baseball. The turf will aid recovering athletes who are suffering from injuries, and the turf field inside will be less painful on the athletes’ joints than practicing on the hardwood floor in Lee Arena.
Harley Douglas, Washburn’s head baseball coach, is also positive about this new facility being built on campus. The indoor facility will allow his team to practice and train without the worry of bad weather during the early months of the year. He believes that the new facility being added to campus is long overdue. The new facility will not only benefit the baseball team, but all sports teams on campus collectively.
“The players are excited. We’re still a year or so away from construction but we use it as a recruiting aspect, which is a big seller for us. It shows a big commitment to athletics, which in this conference means a lot because there’s a lot of teams and a lot of universities that are putting up some nice facilities,” Douglas said.
This new facility will be located on the south side of campus between the baseball field and the softball practice field. A ceremonial ground breaking event is expected to take place on an undisclosed date at the site of future construction.