The Clemson media had the opportunity to tour the new football complex today, and I walked away in awe. If ‘Best is the Standard’, then this is the new standard of college football facilities. If I were a player, I would eat, sleep, and spend every possible waking minute there with my teammates.

This is an incredible facility, yet it is uniquely Clemson. Thad Turnipseed reiterated time and time again that while they took ideas from other schools, they didn’t copy one school’s model. It isn’t as flashy as Oregon’s, nor is it any manner of extreme (except in the category of fun and size).

The themes instead are uniquely Clemson: Fun. ‘Love Care Serve’. The idea was that if the players are happy, then everything else falls into place.

When one first walks in, there is a lobby that will be open to the public by the end of the month. A nine-TV TV display awaits visitors, and the infamous replica of the Hill is straight to the left on the second floor. The Hill has a replica of Howards’ rock, and the sounds of pregame surround you when you press a button and run down the hill.

A Nike room complete with uniform models and a display of championship rings are inside this obscure room.

All of the pictures you see recruits tweeting? Those are taken in here, but in a unique way. NCAA laws stipulate that Clemson cannot give recruits anything during a visit. So there is a touchscreen where people can log in to Facebook or Twitter. They then select a background, then a six second timer goes off. Then you pose in front of a green screen, the picture is taken, and then it is uploaded to your social media. It is a genius recruiting tool that is completely legal.

All around the facility, there are displays and graphics on the wall. Some display Tigers in the NFL, some display All Americans, some display championships, and some display character attributes.

The weight room is larger than Alabama’s and overlooks the practice fields to remind the players of the goal. A Gatorade Fuel bar is inside the weight room for players’ usage.

The locker room is like spokes on a wheel, with an open circle area with couches. The spokes are little pods containing approximately a dozen or so lockers. Lockers are organized by numbers so that players of all classes and positions sit together.

Between the locker room and the practice field, there is a bathroom and wash-up room with open showers, a steam room, and a cold tub that will fit sixty people and be 47 degrees cold.

Adjacent to this is the medical facility that overlooks the practice fields. There are hydrostatic tubs, examination tables, a doctors office, and the headquarters of the training staff.
But the facility wouldn’t be Clemson if it was all business, so once you step outside it is all fun. There are outdoor couches and chairs that are both covered underneath the building and uncovered outside.

A full sized covered basketball court, a nine-hole putt-putt course, a wiffle ball ‘field’, a sand volleyball pit, an outside campfire pit, and a waterfall is all in the outside part of the complex that is sure to entertain the players.

Directly inside is the training table and with the unlimited meals resolution passed by the NCAA, players can eat a wide variety of foods. Your name appears on a screen once you sign in to eat. It is imperative that overweight and underweight players need to eat differently, so that is accommodated for.

The players lounge is directly behind this and is complete with a golf simulator, ping pong, shuffleboard, Pac Man and Big Buck hunting arcade stations, pool tables, arcade basketball, and two bowling lanes.

A barbershop and the infamous nap room lay right ahead, and the nap room has comfortable bunk beds with curtains as well as comfortable chairs and an aquarium.

On the second floor are the positional meeting rooms, the team meeting room (which looks almost identical to the old one), the trophy case, the theatre, and the film room.

There is a whole wall dedicated to the Palmetto Bowl, and prominently featured is the Tigers’ 68-42-4 record against the South Carolina Gamecocks.

One last detail – the media room is upstairs, and the slide goes from the second to the first floor. The slide is just as good as advertised, and it will learn my name very quickly next football season.