In this article from Alabama’s al.com, Alabama Athletics Director Mal Moore flat-out denied that a new pool was on the way.
Alabama recently hired a new head coach for men’s and women’s swimming and diving. Is there any talk of a new natatorium?
“No,” he said.
“I like where we are and what we have and how we’re going about it.”
Despite rumors to the contrary, it looks like Alabama will not be replacing the Dom Gambril Olympic Pool anytime soon.
Not that it necessarily needs replacing, either. The 50-meter, indoor pool is all-deep, and the facility also houses an additional 8-lane 25-yard training pool and a full complement of diving apparatus. With 1,500 seats, it’s got a decent seating capacity and is more-than-enough to host club meets for the local swimming community.
What’s more, in 2002 the pool received a $1.5 million renovation that included an overhaul of the locker rooms, new office space, a new lighting and sound system, and an entire redo of the pool surface (including paint and tile). It is a 30-year old facility, but it still has everything necessary to produce an elite swimming program.
But what many expected to trump that was location, location, location. The pool is nestled in the arm of the football facilities, where Nick Saban is dominating the country (including winning last year’s National Championship). Meanwhile, his program’s success is beefing-up the department’s coffers and many expected him to ask Moore to put up the money for a new natatorium in order to make room for more football-support facilities.
But for now, Dennis Pursely and his new staff will be staying put in the Southeast end of the campus.
Requests for comment by the Athletics Department have not been returned.