With the funding now in place for the Texas Longhorns to catch up with the rest of the Big 12 Conference by building an indoor facility at UFCU Disch-Falk Field, head coach David Pierce discussed the plans for the development area on Wednesday.
Behind the right-field stands, there’s 18,000 feet of space where Pierce hopes construction will begin at some point during the summer following demolition work.
Currently, the architect working on the project has a rendering of what the facility will look like, but has yet to develop the blueprint for its construction.
Future lookin pretttty bright at the Disch pic.twitter.com/ZpB7WeaWRV— James Barton (@jamesbarton10) February 17, 2017
“I feel like we had a lot of input, which I think is important because as a coach you know what’s important for you program,” Pierce said. “I’ve been involved in some facility upgrades or new facilities and had really, really tiny dugouts, or something that is very important to a team that gets overlooked. I think they were very receptive of our opinion and our thoughts on the project. Really, really excited about that. Chris (Del Conte) getting behind this and immediately making that something that is a priority for us and a priority for the department.”
The goal is for players to emerge from the clubhouse and have direct access to the indoor facility, which is especially important when the weather is bad — Texas currently doesn’t have any way to practice in the rain or cold.
“We’ll have our pitching lab with all of our gadgets, Rapsodo and TrackMan, and so we’ll have a pitching lab there. Off to that, we’ll have retractable netting. The retractable netting allows that to be a multipurpose space where we can go one big cage, two cages, we can divide it up for camps, then off of that we’re going to move into an open-ended weight room. Take our weight room indoors and that’s going to become more of a life skills area, potentially a player’s lounge area.”
Additional phases could include a locker room for umpires and offices for coaches with views of the field and indoor training facility.
The construction of the indoor facility will not only improve recruiting, but it will also have a significant impact on the program’s overall competitiveness by facilitating better player development.
“It’s unbelievable for recruiting,” Pierce said. “Recruiting is always the essence of your program, but development. Right now, we have no space for development. Everything we have here at Disch-Falk is unbelievable, but we truly have no indoor. If it’s raining, if it’s lightning, if we’ve got 30 degree weather in January, or late spring, or even early fall, we have no conveniences there. It’s going to really contribute to our development as well.”