The university’s relocation of the varsity weight room from McDonough Gymnasium to the Yates tennis courts at the beginning of this year came as a necessary move to avoid structural damage to McDonough, a 1950s-era building undergoing structural evaluations and never designed to withstand the pressures of free-weights being dropped onto its second floor. This move was ultimately a good choice in the short-run, but the decision is indicative of a much larger problem at Georgetown: despite being well-respected in college athletics and boasting several nationally-ranked teams, athletic facilities on this campus are woefully inadequate for both sports team members and students.

Although this move was inevitable, it is also a temporary solution to this underlying problem. The weights cannot stay on the tennis court at Yates forever, and Georgetown must find a permanent home for them as part of a continuing effort to improve its commitment to athletics.

The university has, to its credit, been working to improve the condition of its athletics facilities in order to benefit everyone on the Hilltop. Remodeling Yates last summer and allowing the varsity weights to be used during off-peak hours by all students who take an introductory course have been noble steps, but these efforts need to continue.

With the basketball team making Hoya Paranoia respectable again, shoddy facilities aren’t going to help attract new recruits to the team. The lack of an outdoor track for a nationally-ranked team along with the embarrassing condition of Harbin Field isn’t helping matters either.

The administration should aggressively attempt to acquire the rest of the needed money for the planned Multi-Sport Facility and make funding this a top priority. The addition of “Grasstroturf” and new bleachers to Harbin Field will be a good first step.

While some grumble about having to trek off campus to the MCI Center for “home” basketball games, attention should continue to be focused on what can be improved here on campus. Athletes at Georgetown shouldn’t have to settle for second-rate facilities any longer.

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