August 25, 2019

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LSU Football Cuts Ribbon on $28 Million Football Facility and Performance Nutrition Center

LSU Football along with TAF (Tiger Athletic Foundation) held a ribbon cutting ceremony today for its new $28 million football operations facility. The money was raised through private donations from donors across the state as well as the country, by former Tiger alums.

The new ops building is now considered to be the most high tech football facility in the country, boasting 155 state of the art sleep pod style lockers, that have ventilated storage drawers and overhead compartments and charging stations. As well as, iPod mounts for doing homework, watching film and other viewings.

Great planning went into the crafting and developing of the sleep pod lockers. Greg Stringfellow, LSU’s Director of Equipment, said “We took a trip out to Indiana to get this drawer the right way. We got the ventilation right, but then we got back here and the top was slamming closed, so we put these hinges on them to get them to close slowly and quietly.”

Separate rooms for shoulder pad racks, shoe dryers and separate ventilation, as mentioned before, keeps odors out of the locker room.

A walk through room that has a wall and four projectors that allows team practice to participate in “virtual” walk through. Offenses can be projected on a screen a controlled via real time computer, so defenses can adjust at game time speed based off motion, personnel and formation. Movable walls allow for expansion of the room and purple turf extends the width of harsh marks to properly prepare and move.

The Performance Nutrition Center, which is open to ALL student-athletes, not just football, seats up to 180 student-athletes, and provides restaurant style food, prepared by Executive Chef Michael Johnson. The serving area, named after Doss and Sally Bourgeois includes carving stations for meats, a brick oven that prepares pizza and a Freestyle Powerade machine for athletes to customize sodium intake levels. Staff dieticians can now track and adjust student-athletes diet based on the results from a recently introduced program using a DEXA scanner. These results help dieticians make informed decisions about what direction to go with the student-athletes diet.

While the new ops building has several new renovations, the crown jewel in it all is the locker room. Upon entry players are greeted by uniforms of previous seasons and a massive Tiger logo embossed on the opposite wall. Gone are all the floor to ceiling lockers, and a coach entering the locker room can have immediate accountability of every player in the room because of the new site lines. Recruits taking visits to LSU can experience what it’s like to run into Tiger Stadium on game day with the new 4D experience. A special helmet fitted with a screen shaped viewer allows for a more complete experience.

LSU looks to have gained the upper hand in recruiting, everything in Football Operations has a need. Some people may ask, why does a football player “need” a sleeping pod. The short answer is you know where he is. You know that he’s going to go into the locker room to take a quick fifteen minute power nap between classes and you can have accountability for him, as opposed to him going across campus and then possibly missing a class. Then that doesn’t end well for anyone.