Monday, October 30, 2006

Halloween 2006: The Re-Resoddening

I saw today that the athletic department is replacing the field at the Shoe again. It's a good thing. The new field didn't look great when it was installed, and it didn't get better. The people in charge are claiming that the failure of the replacement field is just bad luck:
The turf was replaced after the home game with Penn State on Sept. 23, in time for the next home game Oct. 7 against Bowling Green. But two frosts and unseasonably wet weather since then doomed that batch of sod, Patko said.

"Nine times out of 10 it works out, but this just happened to be the one," he said.
Over at the FanHouse, JD isn't so sure:
I said this before the last resurfacing, and I'll say it again: resurfacing a field in the middle of the season is rarely a good idea.

The Bengals faced this problem before they switched to FieldTurf. Neil Rackers struggled mightily as the Bengals kicker because of the sandy surface, and he thrived once he left. Once a field is bad, it's bad. If the grass didn't take the first time around, why's it going to take the second? Or the third?
He goes on to make the point that it's a little late to be replacing the turf, and I agree. However, they have to do something. That field was just unacceptable during the Minnesota game. With three weeks to prepare, I think they should be able to get the field into decent condition for the Michigan game. And honestly, I think that's all they'll get out of it. After this much trouble with the field, I expect them to switch to artificial turf for next season. Why go to all this trouble with natural grass when you can install a synthetic field and then not worry about it? It's not like we have an extensive tradition of playing on grass; there was an artificial field from 1970 to 1990. And with the quality of artifical turf nowadays, it just seems like the way to go.


Andy said...

I agree and I think its a done deal. Time to put field turf down there. I think this is just a something they need to do just to make it through the season. It was painted dirt out there Saturday.

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