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Georgia State breaks ground on football facility
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ATLANTA — Within view of the state capitol, Georgia State broke ground on a new football practice facility Thursday that required some imagination to picture in its finished form.

The school purchased an old warehouse about a half-mile from campus, which will become the centerpiece of a Football Championship Subdivision program that is scheduled to begin in 2010 with Bill Curry as coach.

For now, the area behind the building resembles a trash dump, littered with bricks, rocks, twisted metal, ripped-up pieces of lumber — even a discarded shoe.

“Use your imagination,” athletic director Mary McElroy told about 100 boosters and supporters who turned out for the ceremonial groundbreaking.

The school plans to keep the shell of the warehouse, renovating and expanding it to include offices, meeting rooms and a weight-training complex. Outside the building, land will be cleared to make room for a 100-yard artificial turf field and a 50-yard grass field. The Panthers will play their home games at the 70,000-seat Georgia Dome, about two miles away.

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