Oct. 6, 2006
Marshall University's Department of Athletics officially dedicated the new Robert L. "Bobby" Pruett Training Complex and the Jonathan Edward Dunfee Weight Room on Wednesday, October 4th.
The athletics complex is named in honor of former Marshall football coach Bob Pruett and the new weight training facility is named in honor of Jonathan Edward Dunfee. Pruett served as head coach at Marshall from 1996 to 2004 and compiled a record 94-23. His squads won a Division I-AA National Championship in 1996, five Mid-American Conference titles, six MAC East titles and won five of seven bowl games. Jonathan Edward Dunfee is the late son of long-time Thundering Herd supporters Randy and Deborah Dunfee. The Dunfee family made a generous contribution toward the weight room in honor of Jonathan's memory.
"It is quite an honor to have worked somewhere were the people think enough of you to name part of the University after you," Pruett said. "This is very special for us and quite an honor."
Randy Dunfee said the spacious weight room that is named for his son is a fitting tribute.
"Having this facility in his name, gives me a chance to come back here and see the student-athletes develop from freshmen to seniors," Randy Dunfee said. "They will start here as kids and leave here as young men. Having watched young men like Chad Pennington, Byron Leftwich and others come through here already made me want to do this for Marshall."
The 13,000-square foot, Johnathan Edward Dunfee Weight Room features new Hammer Strength equipment, a running track, and more than 285,000 pounds of new weights. The facility cost nearly $2.6 million and provides the Thundering Herd with one of the largest and finest weight training facilities in the nation.
"We greatly appreciate the contributions that Coach Pruett and the Dunfee family have made at Marshall," Director of Athletics Bob Marcum said. "This is a first-class facility that will benefit our athletics program for years to come."
Marshall University President Stephen J. Kopp, West Virginia senator Bob Plymale, Bob & Elsie Pruett, and Randy & Deborah Dunfee were among the guests of honor at the dedication ceremony.
"To be honest with you, this is just the start of many things to come. Wait until you see the plans that have come into the future with the Marshall campus," Plymale said. "The state has been a partner in most things, and plans on being a partner in the future. I think that Bob Marcum and Dr. Kopp are committed to doing everything possible to furnish the facilities and things our university needs to be competitive in Conference USA, and with whoever they play. One day, all these dreams will be fulfilled."