The new athletic complex isn’t finished, Memorial Stadium is behind steel trusses as part of a multi-year retrofit project, and other things are out of whack at UC Berkeley’s sports program.
But Cal athletes are making do by training at a new 14,000 square foot rectangular tent set up along Centennial Drive, the San Francisco Chronicle reports.
Athletes from 11 sports –including the lucrative men’s football and basketball teams, (football averaged a $6.85 million profit each of the last five years and basketball brought in $2.17 million annually during that period), as well as the women’s money-losing basketball team –now have the use of a yurt and six temporary wood structures. (Okay, four of the six structures are reserved for the football team.)
The complex, in Strawberry Canyon next to the Witter Sports field, boasts a large weight room, locker room, and a number of offices for coaches.
The buildings were set up as part of Berkeley’s $321 million renovation of the aging Memorial Stadium. Work has already begun on the new training complex next to the stadium, and some preliminary work has started on the Coliseum. As soon as the Cal Bears finish their fall 2010 season, workers will jump in for a more complete overhaul of the stadium. The Bears will play in PacBell Park in San Francisco for the 2011 season and will move back into the stadium in 2012.
Cal’s sports teams have come under increased scrutiny in recent months as a panel revealed that the university’s $70 million sports program runs a deficit. The university subsidized the school’s 29 sports team by $13.7 million last year, at a time when money for academic programs was cut.
UPDATE: Herb Benenson, Cal’s assistant athletic director for media relations sent Berkeleyside an email to say the men’s basketball team is not using the temporary tent. The team is working out, as normal. at Haas Pavilion.