Linebacker Jarrad Davis knew he wanted to return for his senior season right after Florida’s loss in the SEC championship game.
“I knew what I wanted to do after the SEC championship game,” Davis said earlier this month. “Of course, I had to look and see what it looked like. But at the same time, just that bad taste that was in my mouth, I can’t walk away from that. It’s something that I know I have another opportunity and I’m going to come at it full go. I’m going to make sure I take advantage of it.”
Jim McElwain is making a lot more money than he used to.
The University of Florida announced Friday that McElwain received a $750,000 annual raise, bumping up his annual compensation from $3.5 million per year to $4.25 million per year. The second-year Gators head coach’s contract still runs through the 2020 season.
“It’s really exciting. It’s a culmination of 21 months since we had our first construction meeting,” UF Executive Associate Athletics Director for Internal Affairs Chip Howard said in a statement. “The design team and construction management firm have worked really hard, so it’s a big day to finally get underway with a very important, critical project here for the university.”
The renovation plans for the O’Connell Center include a seating bowl update, the addition of premium seating areas, installation of a state-of-the-art center-hung scoreboard, upgrades to team spaces and an enhanced concourse to improve the fan experience.
While the renovation is taking place, Florida’s girls volleyball team will play its 2016 home schedule at Santa Fe College. Florida’s basketball teams will also be displaced for most of the non-conference portions of their 2016-17 seasons, as they plan to play some of those games around the state of Florida, in cities and venues to be determined.
“From a sound and lighting standpoint, we’ll have an all-new sound system, a new LED lighting system, a center-hung scoreboard, supplemental scoreboards to enhance the fan experience, expanded restrooms, expanded gates, a 360-degree concourse, premium seating that we’ve never had before in the O’Connell Center, as well as brand new systems – HVAC, plumbing, electrical,” Howard said of the renovation.
Here are more photos of the early demolition activities …
Here are artist renderings of the finished product …