May 18, 2007
France A. Córdova, Purdue University President
"Our athletic teams and facilities are an important part of Purdue spirit and help keep our alumni, faculty, staff and students connected. The new facilities also will give student-athletes the tools to succeed, not only in their athletic endeavors but also in their academic pursuits. I greatly appreciate the willingness of our donors to help Purdue educate and graduate athletes who can be stars both in competition and in the classroom."
Morgan J. Burke, Director of Intercollegiate Athletics
"Mackey Arena has served this university, its student-athletes, coaches and fans well for 40 years with virtually no renovation at this scale. We're mindful that a project of this magnitude is not inexpensive. By leveraging funding from our Big Ten television contracts and private benefactors, we can give to Purdue what Conseco Fieldhouse has given Indianapolis, a 21st century basketball arena that celebrates the heritage of our program.
"It was inevitable that this step would be taken at some point, and we think we're going about it in a fiscally prudent way. We think this will improve the opportunities for student-athletes to succeed first and foremost without coming at the expense of a taxpayer or an existing season-ticket holder."
Ed Howat, Associate Athletics Director - Student Services
"Obviously, we are pleased to get more space for our student-athletes to study and meet with their mentors and tutors. We view the recently renovated Chris Ribnek Computer Technology Center as the first phase of the academic center renovation, and I am confident that providing more physical resources for our student-athletes will help us in our goal to become a member of the 25/75 Club. This project is another clear indicator that Purdue athletics places a concerted emphasis on academics."
Steve Simmerman, Assistant Athletics Director - Facilities
"We are excited about the potential to improve one of our landmark venues, Mackey Arena. The neat thing is that although Mackey is primarily a basketball venue, this project touches almost every faction and team within the Purdue Intercollegiate Athletics family. The new sports medicine area and weight room will take us a quantum leap forward. Teams are going to benefit with improved space in a variety of ways, including new practice areas, new locker rooms, new lounges, new administrative offices for coaches and improved storage space. The Mackey Complex project is a broad stroke of improvement for Purdue University and, undoubtedly, will be the largest single renovation ever undertaken by the athletics department."
Denny Miller, Director of Sports Medicine
"The Mackey sports medicine area, although still replicated for its design, was built for 200 student-athletes. We now have nearly 500 student-athletes at Purdue - and the athletics plant is considerably more spread out - so the area in Mackey has outlived its useful life, putting sports medicine behind the eight ball. So, we obviously are looking forward to a larger, state-of-the-art facility."
Matt Painter, Head Men's Basketball Coach
"Mackey Arena is one of the top places in the country for basketball. One of the best aspects of this renovation is that the integrity of the arena will remain the same. This plan is integrating state-of-the-art facilities and still preserving the tradition of the past."
Sharon Versyp, Head Women's Basketball Coach
"I'm thrilled about the proposed Mackey renovations. It's exciting to know that we will have a state-of-the-art facility that retains the tradition of Mackey Arena. The changes will benefit the student-athletes, the fans, the coaches and the entire community. The improvements will assist us in attracting top-tier prospects, and the addition of the practice facility will allow us greater flexibility for prime practice time.
"We have some of the greatest fans in the country, and I know they will enjoy the improvements. The fans will benefit from wider concourses, greater access to restrooms and concessions and more comfortable seating. We want to maintain the reputation of being the toughest place to play in the Big Ten, while also making improvements to make every event an improved experience for the fans."
Joe Tiller, Head Football Coach
"Having two 100-yard outdoor practice fields that can be rotated to balance out the wear and tear on them will be a huge asset to our program. A reliable surface that can withstand the rigors of nearly four months of pounding and not look like a sandlot field in November will help us physically and mentally. Combined with the recent renovations of Schleicher Field inside the Mollenkopf Athletic Center, Purdue football will have practice facilities as good as anyone in the country."
Dave Shondell, Head Volleyball Coach
"The Mackey Complex project is exciting for everyone associated with Purdue athletics. Many facets of the renovation will affect all athletes, such as the state-of-the-art sports medicine facility, the spacious strength and weight training facility and the additional space that will be allocated to our already fine academic center. Specifically for volleyball, the Mackey expansion allows our program to move our locker room, player lounge and meeting rooms into the IAF and truly make it our home. I believe these upgrades will make a wonderful difference in our ability to operate a top-tier program."