COLLEGE PARK, Md. (WDVM) – The Maryland football team is officially moving into its new home. The Jones-Hill House, which has been transformed and significantly expanded on from Cole Field House, was unveiled to the team and media on Friday.
“Prospects are looking to come here, their parents, they want to know what your commitment is,” Maryland athletic director Damon Evans said. “This building here signifies our commitment.”
The players got their first look at the state of the art facility on Friday.
“Standing in here and we put the smoke on and then to see the faces of our players as they ran into the locker room here to find their lockers with their pictures, that to me brought great joy,” Maryland football head coach Mike Locksley said.
The facility includes a 24,000 square foot workout facility (four times larger than the former facility in Gossett Football Team House), a luxurious locker room, a comprehensive sports medicine center, two full length outdoor practice fields, an auditorium, meeting rooms for each position group, a 10,000 square foot dining area and more. There is also a players lounge with a barber shop, recording studio and a pool table.
“This is crazy, it’s like a Christmas in June,” Maryland sophomore wide receiver Rakim Jarrett said. “You wake up, you get to see this new facility. It’s everything you need in one spot. You wouldn’t want to leave if you were a player.”
According to the university, Jones-Hill House was made possible by donations, most notably a large gift from Under Armour founder and Maryland alum Kevin Plank.
“There were so many individuals involved in this to make this come to fruition. But this facility, while the purpose is for football, there’ll be parts of this facility utilized for our other student athletes as well so that really makes me feel good because this is about who we are,” Evans said. “You’re always measuring yourself to your peers. You’re looking across the Big Ten and saying what do they have? What don’t we have? This right here puts us on par with those institutions that have great facilities. In fact it may put us ahead of some of them.”
Jones-Hill was announced as the name for the house earlier this year, honoring former Terps Billy Jones and Darryl Hill, who were the first athletes to break the color barrier south of Mason-Dixon line in basketball and football respectively.
“We honor Billy Jones and Darryl Hill. And Maryland has always kind of led the charge,” Locksley said. “Them trailblazing this path for future generations, you look at the DMV and what it’s all about, it’s about diversity, to see a facility that exudes excellence, to me as I’ve said before, just shows a tremendous of commitment and a tremendous amount of investment into our program.”