Athletic Complex Groundbreaking

University of Mobile Breaks Ground for New Strength and Conditioning Complex

Zac DouglasAdvancement, News

MOBILE, Ala. – The University of Mobile broke ground for the new J.L. Bedsole Strength and Conditioning Complex on Sept. 10. The 4,000-square-foot facility will be used by student athletes and students in the university’s School of Health and Sports Sciences, as well as for community outreach.

The J.L. Bedsole Foundation awarded a substantial grant to the University of Mobile for a campus weight training and athletic facility. The new J.L. Bedsole Strength and Conditioning Complex will provide space for weight and cardiovascular training, and offices.

“From day one the J.L. Bedsole Foundation has been a major part of our campus. This would not be possible without the help of Chris Lee,” said Dr. Lonnie Burnett, president of the University of Mobile.

Christopher Lee, executive director of the J.L. Bedsole Foundation, said, “I know that Mr. Bedsole would be very proud of the University of Mobile today and the presence you have not only in our community, but in the region and the country. You have created a culture of excellence, empathy and understanding.”

Dr. Bruce Earnest, vice president for advancement at the University of Mobile thanked all the donors that contributed to this project and said the university is seeking additional partners. Donations may be made at

“We are looking at the future of many amazing things. As we give thanks for this building, we give thanks for all things God has provided us,” said Earnest.

The late J.L. Bedsole was the first chairman of the Board of Trustees for the Baptist-affiliated university. He was also the first to receive an honorary doctorate in 1968. During the groundbreaking ceremony, Burnett presented the original honorary doctorate to Lee.

The facility will support the university’s NAIA athletic programs that have outgrown the 35-year-old weight room and training facility in Pharr Gymnasium.

Students in the university’s School of Health and Sports Science will use the facility to gain practical experience and earn professional credentials in the areas of kinesiology, exercise science, athletic training and sports administration.

The complex will also be the site for a partnership with local schools to host community workshops, camps and college preparation initiatives to assist underserved student athletes.

For more information or to donate to the project, please contact or call 251.442.2587.

Featured Image (L to R): Dr. Bruce Earnest, Dr. Lonnie Burnett, Mr. Vince Boothe, Mr. Fred Wilson, Dr. Mel Sansom, Mr. Christopher Lee

About the University of Mobile

The University of Mobile is a Christ-centered liberal arts and sciences institution with a vision of higher education for a higher purpose, founded to honor God by equipping students for their future professions through rigorous academic preparation and spiritual transformation. Core values are: Christ-Centered, Academically-Focused, Student-Devoted and Distinctively-Driven. The university offers on-campus and online bachelor’s, master’s and doctoral degrees in over 75 academic programs. Founded in 1961, the University of Mobile is affiliated with the Alabama Baptist State Convention and is located 10 miles north of Mobile, Alabama on a campus of over 880 acres.

For more information about the University of Mobile, visit the website at or call Enrollment Services at 1.800.WIN.RAMS or 251.442.2222.

About the Author

Zac Douglas

Zac Douglas is the marketing communications specialist for the University of Mobile. He graduated from the University of Mississippi in 2019 with a Bachelor of Science in integrated marketing and communications. As marketing communications specialist, Zac is responsible for writing and strategizing content about the university, assisting with media relations, and handling other marketing and communications projects. He is an active member at Cottage Hill Baptist Church and enjoys spending his time surfing, skating and climbing.