May 20, 2013
GW ATHLETICS' NEW CHARLES E. SMITH CENTER COURT DESIGN: PDF version | JPG version
WASHINGTON - The George Washington University Department of Athletics and Recreation unveiled on Monday a new design for the main floor at the Charles E. Smith Center on which GW's men's basketball, women's basketball and volleyball teams compete. The design includes images of The White House flanked by the United States Capitol and the Washington Monument, with GW Athletics' familiar Buff and Blue GW logo at center court.
"After our graduating students and student-athletes enjoyed their Commencement ceremony on the National Mall yesterday, unveiling this spectacular new floor design today further emphasizes our campus setting in the heart of D.C.," said Director of Athletics and Recreation Patrick Nero. "When people around the world are watching our games, we want them to immediately recognize and understand the university's unique setting in the middle of the action in this world-class city."
The distinctive design pays tribute to three iconic structures that are near and dear to the George Washington community. Every four years George Washington students celebrate the Presidential Inauguration just blocks away from campus, while dozens of university graduates have led long and prestigious careers in the halls of the Capitol. The Washington Monument, the most prominent structure in Washington, D.C., is dedicated to the honor of the first President of the United States and the university's namesake.
"I was born and raised in the Capital region, so this city is special to me," noted men's basketball Head Coach Mike Lonergan. "This new court design has added meaning as I have spent the majority of my life in our nation's capital first as a student then as coach. We will play with great pride on this new floor."
A hallmark of George Washington's Athletics program has long been success through the recruitment of both local and international talent. The National Mall and the buildings depicted on the new court blend the best of Washington with the international appeal that the city holds.
"When I talk to our student-athletes and prospective student-athletes, one thing I always highlight is the opportunity to compete and to learn in a city and at a university that makes history every day," said women's basketball Head Coach Jonathan Tsipis. "Having the opportunity to play in the shadows of our national monuments is incredibly special, and now taking the floor on a court that portrays our historic setting will be rewarding to our players, coaches and fans alike."
"One reason this university is so great is because of our location and the history of D.C.," said volleyball Head Coach Amanda Ault. "Our new floor design highlights a sense of pride, not only about GW, but the Washington community as a whole. Our team is honored and excited to be the first to compete on it in the fall."
The George Washington University was created in 1821 through an Act of Congress, fulfilling George Washington's vision of an institution in the nation's capital dedicated to educating and preparing future leaders.