As athletic director Dan Radakovich said in his letter to IPTAY Donors and fans Thursday morning, Clemson celebrated the addition of women’s lacrosse and women’s gymnastics to Clemson Athletics.
“We had a lot of sports that expressed interest, but at the end of the day, the two sports that lined us best with the ACC were established sports that allow us to compete at a very, very high level here in the Southeastern part of the country and obviously within the ACC,” Radakovich said on the ACC Network’s Packer & Durham Show.
Lacrosse has been a sponsored sport in the ACC since 1997 and with North Carolina, NC State and Pitt already competing in gymnastics, the addition of Clemson allows the conference to recognize the sport and gives those four schools the opportunity to compete for ACC Championships.
“Those two sports came to mind and there is an awful lot of interest in both of those sports,” Radakovich said “Here in our area, women’s lacrosse has started a high school championship here in South Carolina, and certainly gymnastics throughout the Southeast has had a very strong foothold for years. Those were the two sports that kind of came to the top and kind of hit the criteria for us to make that selection.”
As Clemson announced, lacrosse is projected to begin competition in 2022-’23, with gymnastics beginning competition in the 2023-’24 academic year. As for where they will compete, lacrosse will play at Historic Riggs Field beginning in the spring of 2023, while gymnastics will compete at Littlejohn Coliseum in the winter of 2024.
As for practice facilities, The Clemson Insider was told they are now reviewing concepts to build the necessary practice facilities for each of the programs and hope to be able to announce plans in the coming months. As for where these facilities will be located and the cost? Those plans are not yet known as this point.
TCI was told by Clemson athletics spokesperson Jeff Kallin, the athletic department is exploring options that will try to minimize football game day parking as much as possible.
Also, as the two programs come on campus and their practice facilities are being built, Kallin says the two new sports will have minimal effect on the two basketball and soccer programs when it comes to training and practice time.
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