Senior H-back Chris Coyer saw the completed renovation of the Student Pavilion for the first time Wednesday, and he was impressed.
“I think it’s looks great,” Coyer said. “It looks awesome. It’s big enough for us to be able to run plays in, to really work in.”
The football team was let into the newly converted indoor football practice facility for the first time yesterday afternoon. The project’s budget was $290,000, and the money came from the general school budget, not the athletic budget.
“I knew that we were going to get something like that, whether it was a bubble or an indoor facility,” Coyer said “I think I heard a few months ago we were going to have something of the sort. I wasn’t even sure that I was ever gonna see while I was playing.”
Temple has been working very hard to improve the stature of its football program. The move into the American Athletic Conference is huge, but the completion of an indoor facility is also a step forward.
“A lot of major programs have a bubble or an indoor facility of some kind,” Coyer said. “It’s a tool that can be used really well. In the past, we’ve had hurricane-type weather and a couple of heavy snows that we weren’t really able to practice [in]. So to have a facility like that close by is great.”
The “hurricane-type” weather Coyer referred to was Hurricane Sandy, which caused cancellation and rescheduling of various team practices in October 2012.
“Last year was the first time ever actually cancelled practice as opposed to just move somewhere else,” Coyer said. “In the past we’ve had some rainy-type days where we changed the practice schedule around, or gone down to the NovaCare Complex… to practice there. To have one on campus that we know we can use anytime we need to is great.”
According to Coyer, the facility will only be used in the case of severe weather.
“We’re not going to lose our identity,” Coyer said. “Just because there’s rain doesn’t mean we’re gonna move to the indoor facility. If there’s a weather problem where we really, truly shouldn’t be practicing outside, I think that’s when we’ll be using it the most. At least that’s what I gather.”
Temple’s training camp officially begins on Monday, Aug. 5.
Evan Cross can be reached at email@example.com or on Twitter @EvanCross.