New Sports Center Opens

The spotlights were pointed toward the University of Central Oklahoma Bronchos on Friday evening as alumni and Bronchos supporters attended the grand opening of the $14 million Sports Performance Center.

“Anything is possible, but not for night dreamers,” said UCO President Don Betz. “We have to be that daydreamer that works on those dreams…it’s not about me, it’s not about this faculty or this great coaching staff, it’s about those students.”

The facility is more than 40,000 square feet and is located at the north end zone of Wantland Stadium.

“This facility is a part of completing the dream and achieving the dream, but it’s no longer a dream,” Betz said.

Fully equipped with a new weight room, football locker room, training room, nutrition room and academic center, every athlete on UCO’s campus will be able to use the facilities. In addition, administrators made academia a priority in the new building by including three tutor rooms located in the academic center.

“It doesn’t just have to be the kind of dream that you have at night…this is a daydream,” Betz said. “This is the dream that you dream during the day, the kind of dream that takes you to the next step from dreaming, to doing, to reality.”

Paycom CEO and President Chad Richison, a former UCO student-athlete, donated $10 million in 2015 as a part of the “Complete the Dream” fundraising campaign.

This was the single largest gift in the university’s history. He also gave $4 million in 2017 to help fund the new baseball field and Hamilton Field House renovations.

“My hope is that we take our resources and turn them into wins,” Richison said. “I’m proud to be a Broncho today.”

Around 140 former athlete alumni and other VIP guests gathered in the performance center’s theater room for the opening speeches. The program was led by Eddie Griffin, UCO athletics director.

“This is one of the finest facilities in the country,” Griffin said. “I don’t care if it’s Division I or II…this is second to none.”

After speaking Betz, Griffin, Richison and others gathered around for a ribbon cutting ceremony.

“One of the greatest prides that I have living in the Edmond community is UCO,” said Mark Stansberry, chairman for Regional University System of Oklahoma Board of Regents. “We have great days ahead.”

The performance center also includes fingerprint scanners that give athletes personalized workouts and measures their performance.

“The facility is absolutely incredible,” said UCO wrestler Colton Looper. “It is so far beyond what you would expect a D-II school to have.”

Looper said that since all sports are under the same roof, it will help bring them closer.



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