Customized Wall Padding From North Carolina Company Gives New Practice Facility Unique Look
Seldom has the mundane been so eye-catching. So it is with the protective wall padding within the University of Michigan’s spectacular new $23.2 million indoor practice facility for men’s and women’s basketball.
Nearly two decades after the Wolverines men’s team launched a new trend in basketball fashion by changing the look and length of its playing shorts, U of M has brought a dash of artistic style to the décor of its player development center. It has done so by adding a colorful flourish of Maize and Blue to the protective padding on its interior walls.
The company responsible for the distinctive look of the padding around the practice courts is Promats Athletics of Salisbury, NC. After initial contact by U of M, Promats officials knew this would be no ordinary job. For starters, it required custom-made Michigan Blue vinyl for 30 individual 24” wide by 86” high pads that would each be printed with a 15” Maize M. That was just part of the challenge.
For a nearly 45’ long section of wall alongside one of the practice courts, U of M officials envisioned having the padding serve as both billboard and mural. In all, a total of 22 pads were digitally printed and installed sequentially to spell out GO BLUE (in Michigan Blue) over a major portion of the padded area. That creative effort in itself qualifies as a billboard. However, upon closer inspection of the Maize background, subtle images of basketball action and crowd shots can be observed across the length of the 22 pads thus giving it a mural-like effect.
“We have been very pleased with the outcome of the padding project in our new Basketball Player Development Center,” said Rob Rademacher, Associate Athletic Director. “The attention Promats paid to detail, look, and high-quality installation put the finishing touches on what we think is the best facility in the country for basketball. This, along with earlier projects at our baseball and softball stadiums, has made us comfortable continually going back to Promats for our padding needs.”
Speaking for Promats, Matt Cross, Director of Sales, said, “This was a special job for us due to the importance the Basketball Player Development Center has for the men’s and women’s teams at Michigan.” We welcome the artistic challenges that custom orders like this present and enjoyed working with U of M officials to give them a padding product they are proud to show off.”
For over 25 years Promats Athletics has been a leading manufacturer of indoor and outdoor protective wall padding and athletic mats. Its clients include professional teams, colleges, high schools, recreational organizations, and U.S. military venues. Recent college projects have included indoor football practice facilities at Auburn, Georgia Tech and Duke and the indoor basketball practice facility at Indiana University.