Room to improve: Which basketball practice facilities are generating serious buzz?

Room to improve: Which basketball practice facilities are generating serious buzz?

Opened in 1998, the Ubben Basketball Complex was once the crown jewel of practice facilities across the country. Not anymore. But could that change? Athletic director Josh Whitman has hinted at additional "resources" for Illini basketball and has a major announcement at the venue today. Before he does, beat writer SCOTT RICHEY takes a look at 10 practice facilities across the country generating some serious buzz:

PLAYERS SUITE

Kentucky's Joe Craft Center cost $30 million when it opened in 2007. The latest addition earlier this year? A completely revamped area for players that includes massage lounges and a 15-foot video wall.

LUXURY MATERIALS

Brad Underwood knows luxury when it comes to practice facilities. Oklahoma State's, completed in 2010, features a marble staircase leading downstairs to the Cowboys' weight room and locker room.

THE KING'S LOCKER

West Virginia went all out with its new facility in 2012, particularly in the locker room. The lockers themselves were modeled after LeBron James' locker in Cleveland and has a shoe tower that can hold seven pairs.

HEALTH AND WELLNESS

The state of Indiana takes basketball seriously, and the Hoosiers took player wellness seriously with Cook Hall. Opened in 2010, it has state-of-the-art hydrotherapy and video analysis systems to promote health and recovery.

BIOMETRIC ACCESS

A fingerprint scan gets you entry into Texas A&M's 68,000-square-foot practice facility connected to Reed Arena. There you'll find each player's locker featuring an iMac for individual film review — and casual web browsing.

EXTRA PERKS

Ole Miss' brand new Tuohy Basketball Center opened in 2010 at a cost of $13 million. Among its features? An underwater treadmill, a gear room with a walk-up window and a Gatordade drink machine.

SCREENS ON SCREENS

Nebraska went all out for basketball with Pinnacle Bank Arena and Hendricks Training Complex. The latter has a player lounge with a custom couch set up in front of three 65-inch TVs and two 103-inch TVs.

MID-MAJOR, TOO

Power programs aren't alone in building state-of-the-art practice facilities. Drake opened an $8 million facility in 2014, while VCU invested nearly $25 million in its 60,000-square-foot facility that opened in 2015.

ALL ABOUT THE ENTRY

First impressions can be key in recruiting. The entry into Syracuse's Carmelo K. Anthony Center, which opened in 2009, is the Orange's Hall of Fame, and the 2003 NCAA title trophy has a prominent position.

BEYOND BASKETBALL

John Thompson Jr. and Georgetown basketball are synonymous. Now Big John's name graces the Hoyas' facility that is the new home for basketball, but also has locker rooms and meeting space for other Hoyas teams.

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