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Oklahoma State football: Cowboys can finally head indoors

The new Sherman E. Smith Training Center will allow OSU football, as well as other teams, to escape the elements for practices.
By Gina Mizell Published: July 16, 2013

— Walk inside the Sherman E. Smith Training Center, the newest piece of Oklahoma State's immense facilities upgrade, and it's easy to feel engulfed by the massive 92,000-square-foot structure.

It's also easy to notice it feels a bit stuffy.

You see, the Cowboys' sparkling indoor practice facility has fabric doors that roll up to let air flow in. But the tour guide on this day has not yet gone through the proper training to open said doors.

That's one of the unique qualities of the $19-million Smith Center, a facility that will immediately become another recruiting asset for the Cowboys and a place the football team has already begun staging summer workouts to escape the rain and sun.

“Nobody has a facility like this,” OSU megabooster Boone Pickens boasted to the athletic department's Cowboy Roundup show during construction last year.

Until the Smith Center's completion, OSU was the only football program in the Big 12 without an indoor practice facility.

The structure features the familiar brick exterior that allows it to blend with the rest of the buildings on campus. Inside, there's a full artificial-turf football field that can also be expanded into a full soccer field. The ceilings are high enough for punting and kicking drills and for the baseball and softball teams to field pop-ups.

Tackling dummies have already found a home on the sidelines of the facility. Along the north and south sides are stairs that lead to platforms that overlook the field to film practice. Along the east and west sides are 16 fans that help circulate the air from outside.

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