Field Turf Debate...and My Solution

Field Turf Debate...and My Solution

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In case you haven't seen it, the turf at Ross-Ade looks pretty shabby right about now...And it has since the advent of spring. I know, I know, it's not football season right now...and the field did look great, especially at the beginning of the season last year. BUT, as the season progressed, especially in November, Purdue's turf was nothing to write home about.

The debate has raged for about 10 years, since Purdue had serious turf problems in '05- Is it time to get field turf? In my opinion, yes it is.

Purdue used to have a blue grass field...and the ag/turf science schools took very good care of it. 30 or 40 years ago, the very same school invented the drainage system that revolutionized how football and other sports fields drained water efficiently and maintained the surfaces. We all know that Purdue's agriculture school is great at what it does...and great minds in God's country have done big things in that field.

But in '06, when cold weather strain Bermuda grass was put down in Ross-Ade, the school was clearly trying to find a solution to the field problem while appeasing the university itself. That solution has cost the school a lot of money in maintenance and, probably more importantly, has made the university look pretty bad, especially late in the season, as the current turf has looked beaten up.

Indiana's brutal winter is being blamed for the current state of the turf at Ross-Ade...But cold Indiana winters aren't new...nor is this debate.

I'm generally a traditionalist...and understand why many people want to keep the grass. But let me ask all of those people a question- Which is more embarrassing- A school with a premier agriculture school that doesn't have a grass football playing surface or that same school with an awful looking natural grass field?

I think the answer is pretty obvious.

It's time for field turf in Ross-Ade Stadium.

Homage to Tiller, Mollenkopf, The Cradle and The Den could all be employed on a new field turf design.  designed by: R. Dowd 6/19/14

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