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Ottawa University-Arizona breaks ground on new athletics center

(Ottawa University Arizona Photo)

PHOENIX — Ottawa University-Arizona officially broke ground on its new athletics center on Friday.

The O’Dell Center for Athletics was made possible from a $6 million donation from alumni Jim and Jeanne O’Dell and is the single largest donation in the school’s 152 years.

“The O’Dells have given so much of themselves to Ottawa University through the years and now they are taking their stewardship to even greater heights. We could not be more grateful for their leadership, commitment, trust, and friendship,” OU president Kevin Eichner said.

Once built, the three-story, 35,000-square-foot center will house locker rooms, training facilities, coaches’ offices and student support services. Construction is expected to be completed in fall of 2018.

“We believe it is important to do our giving while we are living. We see incredible potential at OUAZ. We’ve been supporters of the new campus since OUAZ was in its early stages,” Jim O’Dell said. “OUAZ’s coaches, staff and athletes work hard each day to offer fellowship, team building experiences and exciting games for fans to enjoy. We hope the new O’Dell Center for Athletics will enhance their experiences.”

OUAZ is currently fielding 21 men’s and women’s varsity teams with women’s soccer, men’s and women’s golf and track and field all qualifying for the National Christian College Athletic Association Nationals. Beginning in the fall of 2018, OUAZ will join the Sooner Athletic Conference for football.

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