Virginia Tech baseball center named in honor of former athletic director Jim Weaver
Virginia Tech baseball’s hitting facility has been renamed in honor of the university’s former athletic director Jim Weaver, whose tenure from 1997-2013 saw tremendous development in the national profile of the university’s athletic programs.
Completed in 2009, the more than 8,000-square-foot facility is one of multiple athletic buildings that were constructed or expanded during Weaver’s time at Virginia Tech, during which the university joined the Big East Conference and later the Atlantic Coast Conference.
Weaver, who was diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease in 2004, died in July 2015, at age 70. A 1967 graduate of Penn State, he played football for Joe Paterno. Before coming to Virginia Tech, Weaver served as athletic director at Western Michigan University and at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas.
During his time at Virginia Tech, the Department of Athletics committed more than $200 million toward facilities, including building Lane Stadium’s south end zone, expanding the stadium’s west side, and building the Hahn-Hurst Basketball Practice Center.
Virginia Tech Director of Athletics Whit Babcock said the naming of the James C. Weaver Baseball Center, and the recent establishment of a football scholarship named for Weaver, his wife, Traci, and their son, Craig, were appropriate given Weaver’s enthusiasm for baseball and football.
“The last time I saw Jim was at his son Craig’s baseball game,” Babcock said. “While Jim Weaver’s impact upon the athletic department and institution was tremendous, because of his passion for baseball and the impact football had on his life, we felt this an appropriate recognition. He was dedicated to making our athletic enterprise among the best in the country, and we will always be inspired by his legacy.”
Weaver’s wife and son will serve as honorary football team captains and participate in the coin toss at the Virginia Tech-Ohio State game at Lane Stadium on Monday, Sept. 7.
Weaver was named Athletic Director of the year by the National Association of Collegiate Directors of Athletics in May 2014. He was presented the John L. Toner Award by the National Football Foundation and College Football Hall of Fame, in 2009, in recognition of his administrative abilities and dedication to college sports, particularly football.
That same year saw the opening of the baseball facility that now bears Weaver’s name. Located just beyond the left foul pole at English Field, it has four batting cages enclosed by netting that can be raised to expose an area that is nearly the size of a normal infield, allowing for fielding and throwing drills as well as hitting. The facility also includes three instructional video labs.
“To be able to train and develop our student-athletes in a facility named in honor of Jim Weaver is an absolute honor and privilege for our coaching staff and players,” Head Baseball Coach Patrick Mason said. “The James C. Weaver Baseball Center is the best indoor facility in the ACC, and it is only fitting that it will now, forever, be named for the man who helped build it.”
James C. Weaver Baseball Center exterior
A rendering of what the James C. Weaver Baseball Center will look like once the former athletic director's name is added to the existing building.