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Cincinnati’s Bearcats to play on new turf

June 21, 2013  - By

College football’s second oldest playing field will have a new look by the time the season opener gets underway.

University of Cincinnati Nippert Stadium

The University of Cincinnati is in the process of installing new artificial turf on Carson Field in Nippert Stadium.

The University of Cincinnati is installing new artificial turf on Carson Field in Nippert Stadium. The project, which cost an estimated $600,000, will be completed in time for the Bearcats’s 112th football season and the home opener against Purdue August 31.

Artificial turf was first installed there in 1970, most recently in 2005. This time, UBU Sports, Dalton, Ga., is providing the synthetic turf and Maumee Bay Turf Center, Oregon, Ohio, is installing it. The old turf already has been removed.

Although the turf is scheduled to be installed by the beginning of August, first the field orientation will be shifted slightly north and west to even out the sideline areas and add a run-off area around the south end zone. Once the field base has been repaired, the surface graded, and the goal posts and kick netting installed, the new turf will go in, University officials say.

UBU Sports’ Speed Series S5-M synthetic turf system was chosen for the project. It is the same product featured at Paul Brown Stadium in Cincinnati, the Mercedes Benz Superdome in New Orleans and the Metrodome in Minneapolis, Minn. The synthetic surface features the company’s exclusive Harmony Fiber and a mix of sand and rubber infill.

The replacement of the stadium’s turf is not included in a multi-million-dollar renovation that will feature luxury suites and premium seating.

The transformation can be viewed on the Bearcats TV live webcam. The condition of the old turf prevents the school from cutting or selling pieces to fans and collectors, according to University officials.

Construction began on Nippert Stadium in 1915 and was completed in 1924. The University of Cincinnati has used the Nippert site as a playing field since 1901, making it the second-oldest playing site in the nation for college football behind Penn’s Franklin Field (1895).

It is the third-oldest stadium still in use among NCAA Football Bowl Subdivision schools. Only Georgia Tech’s Bobby Dodd Stadium (1913), Mississippi State’s Davis Wade Stadium (1914) and Wisconsin’s Camp Randall Stadium (1917) are older, University officials said.

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