WAYNE – Director of Athletics at Wayne State College, Mike Powicki joined the Wildcat Sports Network during the final weekend of Wayne State College basketball ahead of the holiday break and provided an update on a trio of projects that WSC recently completed and are continuing to pursue.
The Wayne State College campus is currently on break while athletes will also be returning to town prior to the start of the Spring of 2022 semester which will begin on Monday, January 10.
A recent project that was completed during the semester was an update to the indoor track surface inside the Recreation Center which was over 20 years old.
Powicki said it was at a point where it was unsafe for the WSC indoor track & field athletes to train at a high level.
“On a 160-meter track those turns are a little sharp,” said Powicki. “So, to re-do that surface really just improved not only the quality for training but when you step into the Rec Center and you see that black and gold new track really just kind of pops. So, that was a great thing for us to get done as well.”
Wayne State College applied for grant funding to help with just over a $200,000 investment for the indoor track.
For the past 10 years, Powicki has also had the stage at Rice Auditorium on a target list to repurpose and better utilize.
“We’ve had a plan for a number of years to renovate the stage and kind of turn it into more of a permanent Cat Club/fan viewing area,” Powicki added. “Similar to what we did with the Swanson Club room over in our press box when we re-did that in Memorial Stadium.”
The initial designs came out a couple of years ago prior to COVID which caused a setback. But after securing the resources they’ll be able to move forward with the project to renovate the Rice Auditorium stage. Right when the basketball season is complete, work will begin in the spring of 2022.
A future major project coming down the line includes a new indoor facility north of the Recreation Center. Some of the specifics are still being worked out but could be here in the next two to four years.
About two and a half years ago, WSC started an indoor feasibility study for athletics and recreation partnering with an architect firm, RDG.
This three-phase project would include a 300-meter track and turf infield in the new facility; renovate the current Rec Center which will be connected to add more courts, add a larger student weight room along with better general wellness facilities for the general student population along with phase three by addressing other issues at Rice Auditorium.
Powicki mentioned this will put Wayne State College on the map from an athletics and recreation facility standpoint.
“That new structure north of the Rec Center is going to be a bubble, an air-supported structure, so it’s going to have a unique look to it,” Powicki mentioned. “But again I think this is really going to be a huge project for our athletic department, for Wayne State College overall and is really going to be transformational with helping us deliver our mission.”
Other funds will still need to be identified as fundraising continues at Wayne State College.
Wayne State College student-athletes are currently on their moratorium break and will return early next week in preparation to continue the winter sports season.
The Wildcat men’s and women’s basketball teams will visit Augustana University in Sioux Falls, South Dakota from the Sanford Pentagon on Sunday, January 2. Join Voice of the Wildcats, Aaron Scheffler on Big Red Country ‘KTCH’ 104.9 and waynedailynews.com with pregame show coverage set for 3 p.m. The men’s game will begin at 3:30 p.m. followed by the women’s game around 5:30 p.m.
Wayne State College women’s and men’s indoor track & field competitors are off until Saturday, January 15 during the Mount Marty Opener in Yankton, South Dakota.
Complete interview recorded on 12/18: