The Burrows-Burleson Tennis Center is the home of Virginia Tech’s men’s and women’s tennis programs and is an outstanding facility for tennis, ranking among the best venues for tennis in the Atlantic Coast Conference.
The venue is located on the corner of Southgate Drive and Tech Center Drive diagonally across from Lane Stadium. It was opened in 1992 and was made possible because of gifts from Dave and Betty Burrows of Roanoke; their son, Jack Burrows, and his wife, Lee, of Roanoke; and their daughter, Beverly, and her husband, Bobby Burleson, of Tallahassee, Fla.
Jack Burrows and Bobby Burleson were teammates on Tech’s tennis team in the late 1960s. Burrows participated in the NCAA Championships and later earned induction into the Virginia Tech Sports Hall of Fame for his tennis exploits.
The facility includes 12 outdoor courts, with bleacher seating, and six indoor courts, with chair-back bleachers and a mezzanine viewing area. The facility also includes locker rooms, coaches’ offices, a team room and a social area.
The athletics department has constantly made improvements to the facility over the years. In 2004, both the men’s and women’s locker rooms underwent upgrades and renovations. In 2007, two large scoreboards were added indoors to allow spectators to follow the action on all six courts. The scoreboards are a product of Santech, Inc., the supplier of scoreboards at Disney’s Wide World of Sports, in Orlando, Fla. The $40,000 addition was paid in part by a generous donation from Kent James and family.
Then, in 2008, the chair-back bleachers were added to the indoor portion of the facility to allow fans a better viewing experience. And in 2009, the athletics department and the recreational sports department on campus teamed to add six new outdoor courts, bringing the total number of outdoor courts to 12. They also paid for lights to be installed, thus allowing for night-time tennis. The recreational sports department uses these courts, but Tech’s tennis teams are able to use them for tournament competition.
The tennis center is one of the few in the nation featuring digital video cameras on each indoor court. The system, created by XOS Technologies, records competition and team practices simultaneously on all six courts. The cameras are mounted at the back of each court in the center and are connected to a DVD recorder located in the tennis coach’s office. The Virginia Tech system is one of the first all-digital systems in the nation. Members of the tennis center and other local patrons also use the system for stroke analysis.
The venue has been the host of several outstanding matches and tournaments over the years, including conference tournaments. It was the host for the Atlantic 10 Conference meet for four straight years from 1997-2000 before Tech moved to the Big East Conference.