KU men's golf coach Jamie Bermel calls Jayhawk Club 'huge for recruiting'
Kansas men’s golf coach Jamie Bermel, whose team has been in the NCAA tournament field the past two seasons, is confident that once the planned new practice facility for the men’s and women’s golf teams is complete, it will benefit performance and recruiting.
“I haven’t seen everybody’s, but we’re going to be close to the top, if not the top (among Big 12 schools),” Bermel said. “We’re probably ninth out of 10 right now. It’s going to be huge for recruiting.”
Bermel said it was designed with the idea that “every kid could have access to work on any part of their game any time of the year. We also want it to be good enough that if guys like (PGA touring pro) Gary Woodland want to practice at the facility, it will be good enough for him to practice there.”
The practice facility will be located at The Jayhawk Club, which is undergoing a massive reconstruction. When it was known as Alvamar, it had 36 holes on two courses, one private and one public. After the reconstruction, it will have only one 27-hole course, which will be private.
Plans for the practice facility include a building that’s 8,500 square feet and includes men’s and women’s locker rooms, coaches’ offices. The plan is for it to include seven hitting bays from which players can stand indoors and drive balls that land on the outdoor range, plus an indoor putting green of 1,600 square feet made of a sand-based, synthetic material, “so we can chip and putt and the ball reacts like it does on a green.”
The outdoor putting green will be 10,000 square feet, according to Bermel.
The facility will include a course simulator, launch monitors and the latest in golf-related video technology, Bermel said.
The plan calls for the driving range to have both bent grass and zoysia areas.
As for when it will all be ready, nobody can say for sure, but Bermel hopes that the new 18 holes — the front nine holes of Alvamar private will remain unchanged and won’t be part of the championship course — will be completed by May of 2018.
“I’m hoping the driving range is done this fall and the building is done before second semester,” Bermel said.
The new course will enable Kansas to serve as host for tournaments, although there aren’t any in the works until the fall of 2019, at the earliest.
Per the terms of a 20-year licensing agreement between the University of Kansas and an LLC headed by Lawrence developer Thomas Fritzel, the Jayhawk Club is granted use of KU’s registered marks and names for an annual fee of $120,000 for the first 10 years, a figure that will be inflation-adjusted for the final 10 years.