Sep 16, 2006

Bleeding Cardinal... Green?!

While I couldn't argue (much) with the case made last year for the downsizing of Stanford Stadium, I was heartbroken at the announcement that the new stadium would have artificial turf. I mean, this was the field that Dan Fouts allegedly called "about the most perfect surface on which he ever played"—and it's certainly the most perfect surface for LSJUMB airplanes and other merry hijinks. (Even if they don't get to touch it for a while.) I was so bummed, I didn't even bother checking the stadium webcams or following any other news of the construction, other than glancing over every time I drove past to make sure the whole thing hadn't imploded.

So you can imagine my surprise and delight when I turned on the Stanford-Navy debacle -- I mean, game -- tonight and saw… divots! Gorgeous, imperfect, messy chunks of sod sticking out every which way, flying nobly skyward in slo-mo with every replay. Somehow, I totally missed the announcement that real grass would be used in place of the synthetic stuff. And I am thrilled.

Don't get me wrong: I'm not changing my attitude about lawn. Most of the time, it's the wrong plant in the wrong place, underused and overwatered. But as a play surfacing—especially for an omnidirectional sport such as football—it's a great choice. The expense and maintenance might be a bit much (especially for the 100,000 square feet of Bermuda grass in the new stadium), but it's worth it for the spirits and safety of the players.

And, of course, the Band.

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