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Inside Oregon's new Marcus Mariota Sports Performance Center

The center will concentrate on improving recovery, physiology and movement in Oregon's student-athletes.

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Under the six-year regime of athletic director Rob Mullens, Oregon has placed innovation at the forefront of its decisions and thought processes. Heading into the start of the 2016 academic year, the Ducks unveiled its new piece of infrastructure: the Marcus Mariota Sports Performance Center.

“The goal of this project was to create one space where we could utilize the most state-of-the-art technology to improve student-athlete wellness and emphasize our commitment to the health and safety of our student-athletes,” said Mullens via a press release. “Thanks to the incredible generosity of Phil and Penny Knight, we now have a world-class facility that is going to take the student-athlete experience at the University of Oregon to a level not previously seen anywhere on the collegiate level.”

According to Oregon, the Marcus Mariota Sports Performance Center “combines sports performance, sports science, sports medicine and technology in one efficiently-designed space” inside the Casanova Center, with the central focus being improving overall student-athlete wellness and performance. 

Under the leadership of new director of performance and sport science Andrew Murray, the sports science unit will concentrate on areas of recovery, physiology and movement. Motion cameras will be used to capture student-athletes performing movements ranging from sport-specific drills to weightlifting. Within the unit, Oregon staffers will also be able to conduct strength diagnostic tests on each individual.

“We focused on creating a space that would allow us to objectively measure a student-athlete’s development and readiness,” Greg Skaggs, director of athletic medicine, said in a press release. “This data will give us the best opportunity to individualize training to maximize performance and prevent injury. Unlike other university performance centers, [the Marcus Mariota Sports Performance Center] is designed to make real-time interventions into a student-athlete’s training program and well-being.”