TUCSON – After a summer filled with anticipation, the Arizona volleyball team got its first look at newly-renovated McKale Center on Tuesday when the team became the first ever to practice in the new-look arena and use the brand new floor.
“It feels like a whole new arena,” said Arizona head volleyball coach Dave Rubio. “It’s beautiful. Everything looks great. The new video board really grabs your attention when you walk in and I love the look of the new seats.”
The arena, which is in the midst of a planned $80 million facelift, received new all new seating, with padded seats in the lower bowl and a new court in addition to the new state-of-the-art video board and new LED screens around McKale Center that have been installed over the last two years.
Additionally, the team received a new locker room, complete with a lounge area and a kitchenette, which the team and staff got their first look at on Tuesday. The facility will be shared between the indoor and sand volleyball teams, though each squad has its own area within the locker room.
“Our goal was to have the nicest and most state-of-the-art locker room in the country,” said Rubio. “I think, thanks to our administration, that is exactly what we got. It’s pretty exciting and beautiful.”
Friday will represent the fans’ first opportunity to see the renovated stadium as Arizona volleyball hosts the Arizona Invitational on Friday. The Cats take on Alabama State (10:30 a.m.) and Loyola-Chicago (7:00 p.m.) on Friday, Sep. 5, before taking on Cal State Northridge (6:00 p.m.) on Saturday, Sep. 6. Arizona is looking to build on its 3-0 beginning to the season, a start which has earned it the No. 23 ranking in the latest AVCA Top 25.
For continued coverage of Arizona Wildcat volleyball, visit ArizonaWildcats.com and be sure to follow the team on Twitter @ArizonaVBall.