Auburn students have experienced the first major upgrades to Campus Recreation’s outdoor facilities in over 40 years. In spring 2020, the SportsPlex was completed and just in time for the fall 2021 semester, 11 tennis courts and eight pickleball courts were installed.
Since the 1980s, the intramural fields, located next to the Jane B. Moore Softball Complex, have been the only ones on campus, but with the addition of the SportsPlex, Campus Recreation offers more capacity for intramural and club outdoor sports.
“The SportsPlex provides a place for Auburn Club Sports teams to practice without interrupting intramural sports, and the synthetic turf fields reduce the number of weather disruptions for club sports,” Scott Harper, director of facilities and operations for Campus Recreation, said.
Fall intramural and club sports include Ultimate Frisbee, rugby, lacrosse, baseball, softball, field hockey, soccer, flag football, kickball and sand volleyball, and the SportsPlex is home to softball and multi-use lacrosse, rugby and soccer fields.
The addition of the SportsPlex provides Auburn students increased options for recreation, Harper said.
When the fields and sand volleyball courts are not reserved for club practices, intramural games or special events, the SportsPlex is available for informal use. There is also a one-mile trail around the SportsPlex for individuals to use during hours of operation.
During hours of operation, the SportsPlex is open to currently enrolled students, plus faculty and staff who are members of Auburn University’s Recreation and Wellness Center.
According to Harper, flag football, men’s and women’s soccer, men’s and women’s lacrosse, rugby and Ultimate Frisbee will be played across the three multi-purpose fields, and baseball, kickball, and fast- and slow-pitch softball will take place across the two softball fields.
Annually, Campus Recreation sees more than 1,000 intramural and club sports teams, and with the addition of the SportsPlex, more teams and individuals can utilize the new and original fields.
Additional outdoor physical activities have been made available to students with the addition of 11 tennis courts and eight pickleball courts that are located on W. Thach Avenue and Hemlock Drive.
“Pickleball has become a very popular, fast-growing sport,” Harper said. “Providing courts on campus will expose a whole new generation of participants to the game. We believe that students will love this new opportunity.”
Although COVID-19 impacted how the SportsPlex was introduced to students, those who have used the fields have enjoyed the facility.
“We have received so many positive comments from students and we look forward to them utilizing the SportsPlex for years to come,” Harper said.
“There are numerous studies that have linked students’ success in the classroom to their participation in physical activity and recreation,” Harper said. “Our team does everything possible to help Auburn students succeed while encouraging them in the development of lifelong patterns of healthy living along the way.”
All Auburn students are welcome to join intramural or club sports and to utilize the outdoor facilities when available.