Ray Tanner Q and A Preview, Part 2: Facilities, Frank Martin and his favorite book

USC Athletic Director and former head baseball coach Ray Tannerthrows the opening pitch before the Gamecocks take on Liberty at Carolina Stadium.

Gene Sapakoff’s Q and A with South Carolina Athletic Director Ray Tanner will run in Sunday’s Post and Courier print edition with a longer version at www.postandcourier.com

Here is the second of two sneak previews:

Now that the indoor football building and new practice fields are on track, what are South Carolina’s most pressing facilities needs?

Eric Hyman deserves a lot of credit for getting our facilities moving forward but we still have a long way to go. We have a nice tennis complex but they don’t have a lockerroom; we’re putting one in. We’re building a men’s and women’s soccer complex that gives them a weight room, a lockerroom and allows them to run out the back door onto the field. We need to build a practice facility for men’s and women’s basketball. Our women’s track team won a national championship in 2002, but it’s the same track. We’re building a brand new track, plus an indoor track facility in our field house. We want to build an indoor tennis center. The Williams-Brice plaza is going to go around the stadium to give fans the same feel they get in the Farmer’s Market. A lot of things need to be done.

Frank Martin got a little frustrated with his basketball team this year, comparing the players to middle schoolers and the like. Do you think he crossed the line and did you ever say anything to him about that?

No. I would never criticize him, because I know him and I know where his heart is and I know how much he cares. I did say to him one time, ‘Don’t be so hard on yourself.’ He is so passionate that sometimes it gets the best of him. But that’s his passion.

What is the last good book you read?

David Halberstam’s book about the Red Sox teammates (Johnny Pesky and Dom DiMaggio) driving down to Florida to visit Ted Williams, “The Teammates: A Portrait of Friendship.” It was so much more than a baseball book.

Follow Gene Sapakoff on Twitter @sapakoff