The University of Alabama’s new athletics dining facility and the Robert Alan Hall Recruiting Room are ready for athletes’ return in the fall.

On Monday, Alabama invited the media for a tour of both facilities, lead by Director of Performance Nutrition Amy Bragg and Assistant Athletics Director for Athletics Facilities Brandon Sevedge.

Bragg said the dining and nutrition facility was designed with students’ needs in mind, with its 25,000 square feet offering up five performance chefs, four registered dietitians and more than 20 assistants helping make meals to fuel athletes’ minds and bodies.

The dining spot has a direct connection to the football facility and easy access so student athletes can come in around their workouts, practices, meetings and classes. While it is closest to the football practice field and was built with football in mind, the new facility will allow all student-athletes access.

“The rules have changed,” Bragg said. “The NCAA is more permission as far as what we can feed. We experienced that for a year or so, and then we started designing and conceiving a place that would optimize those situations.”

In 2014, the NCAA began allowing schools the ability to offer student-athletes unlimited meals and snacks.

University President Stuart Bell, Director of Athletics Greg Byrne and Alabama head football coach Nick Saban were on-hand for the facility’s ribbon-cutting Monday, and Byrne and Saban said they’re excited over what the upgrades mean for Alabama’s athletes.

“We will provide the best experience here at the University of Alabama for our student-athletes academically, athletically and socially,” Byrne said. “The new facility allows our student athletes and allows our teams to perform at the highest levels in all three of those areas by having the proper nutrition.”

Saban said the facility shows Alabama cares about its athletes.

“It is very important to the continued success of all our programs here that we demonstrate that we have a willingness to reinvest into the student athletes not only as players and athletes but also as people,” Saban said.

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