Auburn football may have a new practice complex on the horizon.
The plans for a football-only facility on campus have begun taking shape and have reached a turning point behind the scenes. The fundraising for the complex has reached or is close to the halfway point for the estimated $60 million price tag for the complex, 247Sports's Brandon Marcello reported Thursday.
Administrators could initiate public discussions about the project with the Auburn University board of trustees June 7, according to Marcello.
Athletic director Allen Greene was unable to confirm if the plan would be presented to the board of trustees, and he also refused to provide financial details. Greene did remark that he was happy with Auburn fan support during his first major fundraising effort while at Auburn and the project could see movement soon.
"We're really, really close and we're in a really good spot with what we've been asked to do from a fundraising perspective," Greene told 247Sports. "The board, I think, is really interested and engaged with this project, and they want to have a better understanding of scale and scope of other folks in the [SEC] and to help us better understand and better plan as we move forward with our plans for our project."
Greene has been attempting to raise funds and pitch the football-only complex to boosters and alumni since replacing Jay Jacobs as athletics director February 2018. Head coach Gus Malzahn pledged $2 million for the complex in September, and notable alumni have also promised significant donations. That total is closing in on over $30 million soon, per Marcello.
If this all goes according to plan, the complex's construction would be the largest construction project for the athletics department since Auburn Arena in 2010. The arena cost $86 million.
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The design process for the football complex should take one year, and construction would be another, per Marcello.
"We're still tracking on a pretty aggressive timeline," Greene said. "And we expect to continue to track on that aggressive timeline."
It's unclear if a location for the complex has been determined, but the most likely candidate appears to be near the corner of Biggio Drive and Samford Avenue, the site of the old outdoor track. This piece of land is in the center of the athletics hub of Auburn University. Biggio Drive is the only piece separating the old track from the football practice facilities attached to the Auburn athletics complex.
The deadline to submit University department materials to President Steven Leath's office before the next board of trustees meeting is Monday, May 13. The agenda is reviewed on May 22 and finalized May 30.
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