New Digs

While busy work continues on Florida State's new athletic center, the Seminoles are enjoying their new home. For the first time in four seasons, the athletic department is once again centrally located for employees and student-athletes. Following Friday's 22-period practice, for example, FSU football players made their way from the locker room to the cafeteria -- a trip that used to be a healthy walk or quick ride to old Florida High.

Florida State free safety Pat Watkins sipped on a cold drink as he made his way to the cafeteria for a quick lunch following Friday's morning practice.

Watkins didn't even have to leave the new Moore Athletic Center to find a bite to eat.

There was a time, not so long ago, when Watkins had to jump into his car or hitch a ride to old Florida High for lunch or walk around Doak Campbell Stadium to the food court.

In fact, there was a time when FSU's training room was in an old cinder building next to the Florida High gymnasium, which also served as the Seminoles' weight room.

That was the Seminole Stone Age.

FSU has an impressive, sparkling home in the new Moore Athletic Center.

"It's the firt time in three years or more that we've got everything in one place," FSU coach Bobby Bowden said.

"Everything is centrally located. I think as a team it helps."

Indeed.

Last Sunday's media day, for example, was staged in the team's new projection room, located on the first floor of the athletic center.

It features theatre-style seating and the walls are decorated with huge pictures honoring some of the program's best players, from Peter Warrick to Deion Sanders to Derrick Brooks.

The team's cafeteria recently opened, providing a full-service kitchen. It's located on the west end of the athletic center, a short walk from the locker room and state-of-the-art training facility.

The center's second floor features the academic advising offices as well as sports information and sports marketing.

The football offices are on the third floor and the fourth floor features the athletics administration offices, including Dave Hart's office.

"Everything is in the same building and it's far more organized," center David Castillo said.

"There's no excuses."


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