By Vinnie Manginelli
The University of Illinois golf program got a big boost recently, receiving a $2 million gift to expand its existing indoor practice facility. Opened in 2008, the Demirjian Indoor Golf Practice Facility was a demonstration of the university’s commitment to high-quality men’s and women’s golf. It has become a place where Illini golfers can work on their games year-round and achieve their goals in golf. For many players, it is like their home away from home.
With six heated bays that allow players to hit from climate-controlled comfort to the adjacent outdoor range, a short game area that enables players to hit chips and pitches up to 40 yards, and a putting green that supports putts up to 85 feet, as well as an all-inclusive club repair room, team locker rooms, and a lounge, University of Illinois men’s and women’s golfers can feel comfortable and grateful that their multi-million dollar facility, already one of the best in the country, will receive several enhancements, thanks to the generous gift recently received.
The funds recently received will add several hitting bays and a state-of-the-art putting studio. According to the university’s athletics website, www.fightingillini.com, Director of Athletics, Josh Whitman is quoted as saying, “We are incredibly grateful for this generous gift. The gifts from so many have solidified Coach Mike Small’s men’s program as one of the nation’s elite and helped to build Coach Renee Slone’s team into a contender in the Big Ten and at the NCAA Championships.”
With amenities like these, Illini golfers are further motivated to excel, and add to the list of the university’s golf accolades earned over the years, most notably two National Champions and eight Big Ten titles.