All Gamecock athletes who want to live on campus could find a home in the new private dorm being built behind the Carolina Coliseum.
The 582-bed dorm, part of partnership between USC and Atlanta’s Holder Properties, is slated to open in 2015.
The dorm, along with a 290-bed second phase opening in 2016, is expected to have amenities found at student-centric complexes on Bluff Road, including a pool and fitness center.
“That’s a great recruiting tool,” athletics director Ray Tanner said Friday.
About 250 Gamecock athletes, less than half of the school’s total, live on campus, Tanner said. Most live in the East and South Quads on campus.
Having athletes live together builds camaraderie, Tanner said: “We’d like to maintain that.”
Schools can bunch athletes in campus living quarters as long as they make up less than half of the residents in a dorm, according to NCAA rules.
Other schools are moving toward having athletes live under one roof.
Auburn opened a 418-bed dorm for athletes last year across from sports-related buildings on campus.
Oklahoma debuted a 380-bed athletic dorm last year with a game room and theater. And Florida State is considering one, according to reports.
USC would need to work out an agreement with Holder to lease the beds to athletes.
Holder is leasing the land from the school on the west part of campus to build and own the dorm. The company is sharing profits with USC.
Blocking off a portion of beds to athletes could be seen as denying some students a chance rent beds in a new dorm.
But the move would open 250 beds in the central campus, an area that many students consider more desirable, said Dennis Pruitt, vice president for student affairs.
Most dorms in central campus have either undergone renovations or are scheduled go through makeovers, Pruitt said.