The Oakland men’s golf team has made its first trip to the NCAA tournament.
And the dynamism of the program continues to pick up, with this week’s announcement that the university is planning to build a state-of-the-art indoor exercise facility.
The training facility, which will be located on the university’s two prestigious golf courses, will cost approximately $ 3 million and will be privately funded. About $ 2 million has already been raised, according to sports director Steve Waterfield, with the groundbreaking expected in the spring.
“It’s a game changer for us,” said Oakland men’s golf coach Nick Pumford. “I told people that it was always the missing link for us because we have two beautiful golf courses right on campus.
“Unfortunately, it snows in Michigan and we don’t really have a home in winter.”
The facility, which is located away from the putting green by Katke-Cousins and R&S Sharf, is used by the men’s and women’s programs and is 5,000 square meters in size. It will include an indoor putting and chipping green with a slope and made of artificial turf; Changing rooms for men and women; Coaching offices; a team conference room; a feeding station; and six garage door bays with heaters for practicing in winter.
Before that, the Division I golf teams had to train in Carl’s Golfland in winter.
The facility will also be equipped with TrackMan and a putting viewing system.
The facility, which has been in operation for at least six years, will help bring Oakland’s resources closer to state-of-the-art golf facilities at other Division I state schools, such as Michigan State and Michigan.
“The first question recruits ask is, ‘What are you doing in winter?'” Said Pumford. “It’s not bad going to Carl at the moment. But it will be nice to have everything centralized.”
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The Oakland women’s team, coached by Alyssa Gaudio Guss, made it to the NCAA for the first time in 2016, while the men’s team made it for the first time this year.
A private reception was recently held for donors who were shown renders of the facility.
The donors have not yet been named.
Waterfield said the future facility “will be among the best college indoor golf courses in the country”.
“I think people are realizing that the program is moving in the right direction,” said Pumford. “Then they also realize that they are taking us to the next level, that’s what it takes.”
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