Clark Lea discusses facility upgrades, renovations at Vanderbilt
Facility upgrades and additions have long been a topic of conversation in and around Vanderbilt. But new coach Clark Lea shined some light on the issue on Thursday.
Lea said on Thursday during an interview with Sirius XM radio that a new football facility is in the future, but he did not offer a timeline. Lea has largely deflected questions about facilities and instead preferred to focus on building and re-shaping the roster and culture.
“My primary focus right now is on building a competitive team,” Lea said, per Vandy247. “To me, that’s where the renovation of this program starts: within the mindset of this organization. That takes time and effort. Before we fill a new locker room — which is being worked on currently underneath me — before we build a new facility, which will be coming, before any of that happens we need to make sure that we have the appropriate mindset.”
A renovation of Vanderbilt’s locker room is underway, and Athletics Director Candice Storey Lee has previously said will be completed by the summer, or possibly by spring practice.
In the mean time, Lea said Vanderbilt players and coaches will appreciate the temporary structure.
“It’s kind of a beautiful thing right now, honestly,” Lea said. “We’re dressing in the stadium locker rooms. We have metal lockers. It’s probably the poorest locker facility in the country, because it’s temporary. But we see it as the best, because it’s ours. The way we take care of it is so important, because that is how we show the respect and appreciation for anything we get. This program’s gonna be about earning it, and I think once we deliver on that mindset, once that becomes how we lead, then what you’re gonna see on the field is a competitive product that’s fighting for what it believes in. At that point, then we start to build the structure. Then we start to reach for the potential, and it takes time. That is also what’s most exciting to me, how we build that competitive mindset within this program immediately.”