If the University of Illinois is not your top choice among golf schools, wait until you see their incredible Augusta National-inspired practice facility.
Dedicated in 2015, the Lauritsen/Wohlers Outdoor Golf Facility, as its known, is a 24-acre, fully irrigated, 360-degree practice center open exclusively to Illini golf student-athletes.
Located on campus right next to the J.G. Demirjian Indoor Golf Practice Facility, the enormous outdoor practice center consists of 56,000 square feet of practice tee boxes, 55,000 square feet of greens, and 18,000 square feet of practice bunkers. Oh yeah, and it’s modeled after one of golf’s most celebrated practice pitches at Augusta National Golf Club, home of the Masters.
According to Illini men’s golf head coach Mike Small, the Lauritsen/Wohlers Outdoor Golf Facility is “a state-of-the-art golf practice center inspired by Augusta National that gives our players, our student athletes the opportunity to practice, train, and perfect any shot they may encounter on the golf course.”
Here are a couple photos of the practice center, courtesy of the University of Illinois:
The key element at the heart of the glitzy practice area is its adaptability. Tee boxes that dot the outer rim of the practice area can be used to target any of the numerous interchangeable greens and fairways on the property (made from various types of grass). This allows Illini golfers to work on any type of shot or hole shape they can imagine.
As women’s golf head coach Renee Slone explains, that flexibility also extends to weather and wind conditions, “With it being a 360-degree facility, it enables us to work on wind shots, so we can practice left-to-right, right-to-left, into the wind, as well as downwind.”
Here are two more views of the facility:
It’s normal to feel envious of the current Illini golf teams, but if you want to see more of their prized practice center, check out this video produced by the school containing drone flyovers.