Funds will help with renovations of
UIndy’s Nicoson Hall
Ray Skillman, owner of Ray Skillman Auto Group, has pledged $500,000 to replace the basketball floor while installing more effective and efficient LED lighting in UIndy’s 4,000-seat Nicoson Hall, home to the Greyhounds since 1960. Skillman joined university President Robert Manuel on Jan. 15 to announce the gift at halftime of the men’s game against Bellarmine, which UIndy won to improve its record to 14-0. The ’Hounds, ranked No. 3 in NCAA Division II, have since moved to 15-0 with an 84-67 win over visiting Southern Indiana.
The work, which includes other improvements to the facility, will begin immediately after the season and should be completed in time for the 2015-16 campaign. The floor will be dubbed Skillman Court.
“Our student-athletes certainly have earned these upgrades with their performance on the court and in the classroom,” Manuel said. “It is quite fitting that this support comes from Ray Skillman, who shares the university’s commitment to the residents and the economic vitality of this part of the city.”
In recent years, the auto group has provided more than $3 million to support schools, parks, food banks, youth sports and other charities, particularly on the Southside. Skillman entered the market in 1979 with a single dealership on South U.S. 31 and since has grown the company to include 17 franchises at 13 central Indiana sites.
“The University of Indianapolis is a vital anchor in the community where we do business,” Skillman said. “We greatly admire the university’s dedication to its students and their families, and we’re delighted to partner with an institution that prepares new leaders for our city, state and nation.”
Named for the late Angus Nicoson, a longtime athletic director and basketball coach for the Greyhounds, Nicoson Hall has hosted training camps for the Indiana Pacers and practices for Final Four and Big Ten tournament competitors.
The UIndy men’s team has reached the NCAA tournament for the past four seasons under coach Stan Gouard. The women’s team, which also defeated Bellarmine on Thursday, has reached tournament play for the past three years under coach Constantin Popa.