USC Football Recruiting: New Athletic Facility Will Have A Video Game Lounge


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When you think of the USC campus, you probably think of Romanesque Revival architecture, bicycles, tourists, bicycles, Tommy Trojan, the Bovard Auditorium and bicycles. Pretty soon, that will change, as when the new USC athletic facility, the John McKay Center, opens in July, it will feature not only a 40-yard indoor practice area(half the size of UCLA’s official outdoor digs at Spaulding Field), but a lounge for players to shoot the breeze and some terrorists in Call of Duty.

"“That place is going to be unbelievable,” senior safety T.J. McDonald said. “We’re all excited about it. It’ll give us a place where all the players can go in and chill between classes. We’ll have a spot where we can play video games and just relax.” The project is also expected to help with recruitment. According to USC coach Lane Kiffin, an effect on the recruitment of future Trojans has already been felt. “I like that it’s there for our current guys,” Kiffin said following practice on Thursday. “It’s about recruiting. It already impacted the last class we signed. It’ll be a great impact for us.”"

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It’s about recruiting, Lane? You’re damned right it’s about recruiting. The building is the Trojans’ answer to Cal’s huge new weight room, which was a huge reason(along with Tosh Lupoi) why the Bears had so many top commits back in January. If the Trojans can use the new building to keep guys that previously got away, like DeAnthony Thomas, Arik Armstead and even Kyle Murphy, the building will be doing it’s job.

In this day and age, just being USC doesn’t sell itself like it used to, when a school like Oregon is appealing to 17-year-olds by being Team Nike, having recruits meet Phil Knight and hosting NBA superstars on the sidelines. The truth of the matter is that recruits from the Class of 2013 were just seven or eight when Reggie Bush and LenDale White stepped on campus, and until this fall, USC has been out of the spotlight for a while.

Any bit of kitsch and gizmos helps with recruiting, and even though the John McKay center is far from being labeled as kitsch, having a lounge to play Madden 13 between Writing 140 and Beginning Ceramics could be a trump card for kids on the fence, as trivial as that sounds for the common person.

Lastly, one of the most interesting aspects of the move from Heritage Hall to the McKay Center, is that Lane Kiffin’s office will no longer face USC’s Tuscan getaway known as the Cinematic School of Arts, but instead will overlook Howard Jones Field, as pictured at the upper right. This gives new meaning to the term “Big Brother”, that’s for sure.