The saying “age is only a number” is especially true when it comes to a hardwood floor. And after winning 3 out of 6 NCAA title championships in the past 30 years alone, UNC’s gym floor at the Dean Smith Center has proven just that. When the Dean Smith Center opened in 1986, the UNC Tar Heels chose a Robbins SpringAire floor system for their new game floor. The SpringAire system offered a unique combination of high load bearing capacity (for bleachers or forklifts), excellent acoustical properties (for sound absorption), and dimensional stability (for athlete protection) in a gym floor. Years of engineering and fine tuning sport floors had led to new developments in the construction of the subfloor. Not only was the floor designed for optimal game play, but it was also constructed with safety of the athlete in mind. UNC understood this technology and wanted only the best for their student athletes.
The new floor not only proved to be a winner for the team which brought home three additional NCAA title championships, but also proved that it was built to last. With routine hardwood floor maintenance, the Dean Smith Center was still in excellent shape in 2007 when it received a facelift with a floor sanding and new graphics. In 2010 the men’s head basketball coach, Roy Williams, also wanted to improve the floor in the practice facility due to the high number of hours spent practicing. He and the facility directors turned to Robbins and Foster Specialty Floors (Robbins dealer in NC) to develop a flooring system that would mimic the performance of the existing gym floor.
The SpringAire system had been off the market for several years at this point, so Robbins and Foster joined forces to build a replicate of the original SpringAire floor system. The signature springs were custom built and the sleeper system redesigned to deliver the same comfort and performance of the original Springaire. Before full manufacturing of the system occurred, two 4’x6’ mockup samples of the new floor were sent to UNC for testing. After a week of hands on testing by the basketball players themselves, Coach Roy Williams made the final decision to move forward with construction of the new floor. In June 2010, over 8,000 sq ft of the newly designed SpringAire floor system was installed in the men’s practice facility.
The UNC Tar Heels can say they truly have a floor that is one of a kind since there is no other flooring system like it anywhere else in the world. They should also be proud of thinking ahead and prioritizing their athlete’s safety by selecting the best floor option to support the future of their tremendous basketball program. Robbins is honored to be a supplier to the UNC basketball team for more than 30 years now. We also congratulate them on winning their 6th NCAA Championship Title and look forward to many more to come!
About Robbins Sports Surfaces
Robbins Sports Surfaces, a division of Robbins, Inc., is a privately held, 4th generation family-owned flooring company based in Cincinnati, OH with sales offices across the U.S. and manufacturing plants in Michigan and Wisconsin.
The NBA champion Cleveland Cavaliers play on a Robbins Sports Surfaces “All Star” brand floor at their home court, Quicken Loans Arena, and practice on more than 18,000 sq. ft. of the company’s “Bio-Channel Classic” flooring, one of the top floor choices among NBA franchises. The Cavs have played home games on Robbins floors since 1974.
More NBA teams compete and train on Robbins flooring than all other competitors combined, with 90% of NBA teams owning the company’s competition and/or training facility floors. Past NCAA men’s basketball champions Connecticut, Duke, Kentucky, Indiana and North Carolina play their home games on a Robbins floor.
Robbins Inc. has registered 25 patents over the years, with additional patents pending, and is the only U.S. flooring manufacturer with a full-time research and product development staff. Robbins’ unique capability and understanding of the biomechanical interaction between the athlete or performer and floor have recently led to new designs that reduce vibration and increase uniformity, both of which improve performance, comfort and safety.
In addition to Robbins Sports Surfaces, Robbins, Inc. is also the owner of Stoehr Flooring, a high-end residential flooring business, and majority owner of Egis Floorlife, an innovative after-market service business. Robbins also has a theater and dance floor division known as Robbins Performing Arts, which is dedicated to the development of performing arts floor systems that enhance the safety and comfort of performers.