Blog Entry

$4.5 million gift gives UConn practice facility

Posted on: December 29, 2011 5:21 pm
By Matt Norlander

Some seriously good news for UConn came down today. The school announced its largest donation toward athletics in school history-- a $4.5 million gesture that will go toward building a practice facility. The donation was made by the Werth family, located in Woodbridge, Conn., which is a town where I once refereed a private school basketball game. There are many white fences.  

“The entire University of Connecticut community is grateful to the Werth family for the leadership role they are taking with this generous commitment towards the building of our new men’s and women’s basketball facility,” Susan Herbst, the president of UConn, said in a statement. “This historic gift will help us maintain the excellence that has long been synonymous with our University and its outstanding athletic programs.”

So, who are the appropriately named Werths? Peter Werth is the founder and CEO of Chemwerth Inc., which is a 29-year-old "drug development and supply company" in the Nutmeg State. Werth has been one of the biggest boosters at UConn for eight years.

“We are proud to make this commitment to UConn and its outstanding basketball programs,” the Werths said in a statement. “UConn Basketball is part of the fabric of our state, and we know that this facility will help the men’s and women’s teams be successful for years to come.”

The strange thing is ... I'm not so sure UConn needs a practice facility. Who knows; maybe it does. But Gampel Pavilion is smack-dab in the middle of the campus, and players are in there constantly. This will be another way to lure recruits, and in fact the facility probably won't even be finished until the end of/after Jim Calhoun's tenure.

New toys in the shapes of buildings are always morale-boosters and recruiting weapons. UConn just received quite the addition to its arsenal.

Photo: AP
Category: NCAAB

Since: Nov 3, 2006
Posted on: January 30, 2012 4:48 pm

$4.5 million gift gives UConn practice facility

And you know what? I wish Papa John's would donate the amount to education instead. There is a huge difference here, however, as John isn't just giving the money away, he's getting advertising for his business out of it. It wouldn't profit him if it went to an educational facility. I also wish Pitino didn't make so much, but that's the nature of things as well. If a not-for-profit donated money to UofL, however, I would be just as upset if it went to sports instead of education, where it's needed more. There is no double standard here on my end, just understand that.

Since: Jan 1, 2012
Posted on: January 1, 2012 1:51 pm

$4.5 million gift gives UConn practice facility

Seriously Louisville? You have the pizza guy giving 10 million bucks a pop -- all of it to the athletic department. And you're criticizing a donor at UConn for giving less than half that amount?  Speaking of big bucks-- a USA Today analysis of coaching salaries puts your Louisville coach at the absolute top, at $7.5 million per year. More than three times what Calhoun makes at UConn. People in glass houses.

Since: Jul 29, 2009
Posted on: December 30, 2011 10:37 pm

$4.5 million gift gives UConn practice facility

$4.5 mill for a practice facility? I'm sure that puts a dent in the slush fund that UConn uses to pay for their top players. One thing we do know is that Calhoun isn't giving back one dime of his salary to help any homeless dude or anyone else for that matter. You SUCK Calhoun.

Since: Nov 3, 2006
Posted on: December 30, 2011 2:09 pm

$4.5 million gift gives UConn practice facility

I'm as big a sports fan as most here, but really? 4.5 million that could go to scientific research or education instead goes towards a practice building. Wow.

Since: Nov 3, 2006
Posted on: December 29, 2011 9:30 pm

$4.5 million gift gives UConn practice facility

Hahaha! Oh cbssports, when will you learn? gest? Really?

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