Sooners' Owen Field to Get New Grass
By Gan Matthews, NEWS 9
NORMAN, Oklahoma -- The Sooners will step onto fresh grass at Owen Field on Halloween, as they face the Kansas State Wildcats.
The university's grounds maintenance crew will be working to get the field ready in time for the October 31 game.
Last Sunday's U2 concert in Norman made quite an impression. The grass at Memorial Stadium was left a muddy mess. But these days you don't have to grow a new field--you simply have one brought.
"It stayed wet and mushy," said OU Head Groundskeeper, Jeff Salmond. "It didn't have very good color to it. It would have been very disappointing to put that product out for the next game."
So this week crews ripped out the old field, and brought in a new one, all the way from Alabama. The new grass, same as the old grass, is Tifsport Bermuda.
Crews worked most of Thursday, past midnight, until 2 a.m. rolling out the new sod. After a little sleep, they started up again Friday morning.
Each one of the rolls is three and a half by 40 feet. Each one weighs more than a ton. When the job is finished, almost 800 tons of sod will have been laid down.
One company supplies the grass, while another company--from Bixby--installs it. It's a specialized job, but this group has had lots of experience.
"Well, you know, every year we get to go to the Kansas City Chiefs and do their field for them, and usually, twice a year, we get to go back, you know, right before the Big 12 and do the hash marks," Jason Thomason with Green Acres Sod Farm said.
The clock is ticking. OU's next home game is eight days away.
"We gotta be ready," said Thomason. "They're gonna play next Saturday no matter what, so we gotta be ready."
All roto-tilled, and stacked, the old field will live on providing landscaping for the OU golf course.
U2 footed the bill on the new field. It's the first time OU has completely replaced its football field since 2003.