Saturday, April 24, 2010

The Old Firm Derby .....and the Green Monster?!?!?

The most intense soccer rivalry is in Scotland. Rangers (in blue, below) and Celtic (white with green hoops) both reside in Glasgow and when they play it's known as the "Old Firm Derby"


Recently, I came across a piece about the possibility of both teams playing a pre-season game at Gillette Stadium. It interested me, but not enough to get me fired up to post it.

Then, this morning, I was directed to a piece on the BBC news site saying that this game might be played at Fenway Park! I'm not a fan of soccer in baseball parks and the capacity at Gillette is much higher than at Fenway, but it would be something to see those two old rivals (first meeting: 1888) in one of the oldest ballparks in America. Money quote from Sam Kennedy, Red Sox C.O.O.:

"We recognise it's a very special match between two very historic teams and the thought is that a very historic venue like Fenway Park would be appropriate to host that rivalry.

"We're hopeful that we can make it a reality."

I'll keep an eye on this. After having the Winter Classic earlier this year, it would be quite the feather in Fenway's cap to host the Old Firm Darby.

Until next time.

Friday, April 23, 2010

New Blue Turf

Just a quick one today.

boise st

Boise State is famous for having blue turf. But, sometimes the fibers can have something of a sheen or glare that irritates the fans and doesn't look so good on television. The fine folks at FieldTurf were aware of the situation, and will work this summer to get the situation resolved. Money Quote:

Athletic director Gene Bleymaier says light-reflecting fibers in the current artificial field cause problems for people watching the game in person or on television.

Bleymaier says FieldTurf wants to fix the problem and is doing it for free. The school did not estimate the cost of the project.

Big thanks to Tim Snyder for the tip on this one! He's got a blog of his own: Red Rider Sports Blog, check it out. We bloggers are always putting each other over, that's how we roll.

Who knew somebody was actually reading this?!?!?

Until next time.

Thursday, April 22, 2010

Two Teams...Two Cities...One Stadium?

Well, I'll be the first to admit this isn't a fresh item, but I've been busy.

The San Francisco Bay area's two NFL teams play in stadiums that have seen better days. Candlestick Park opened 50 years ago. (The 49ers started playing there in 1971.) The Oakland Coliseum opened its doors in 1966. Each team has been working on a new stadium but nobody is in danger of getting anything done soon.
But that hasn't stopped an Alameda County politician who just so happens to be on the board of the Oakland Coliseum from getting the Coliseum to study the issue of one stadium for both teams.
Money Quote:

"There is only going to be one stadium in the Bay Area, and it's not going to be in Santa Clara," said Alameda County Supervisor Scott Haggerty, a member of the Coliseum board who voted with his colleagues last week to spend $125,000 on a study of a new Oakland stadium.

It probably makes sense on a number of levels for the two teams to share a stadium, but I don't think it's going to happen.

But there's more. June 8 will see voters in Santa Clara going to the voting booth to decide on Measure J. (Named for Jerry Rice?) This will provide funding for a stadium for the 49ers. There is opposition. Money Quote:

It's believed in some circles that the Santa Clara project ultimately won't be viable unless the 49ers and the Raiders share the facility. It's also believed that the Raiders strongly prefer sharing a facility in Oakland.

Either way, the vote is going forward on June 8. A positive outcome doesn't guarantee that the stadium will be built. If the "nays" win, it's pretty much dead.

I just don't see those two teams sharing a stadium. We'll see how this develops

Until next time.

Sunday, April 18, 2010

Now THIS Man Is Into Stadiums!

Do you think it's odd that I pay attention to the field, as well as the game being played on it? I understand, I don't take it personally.

I've got nothing on Scott Poleykett of England. He loves soccer and visiting the multitude of 'grounds' around England. He's made it to over 2,400 so far. Money quote:

He began his hobby 12 years ago when he photographed the old Wembley Stadium with his father.

Afterwards he bought a picture book with information about every football ground in the country. "It led to a bit of an obsession," he said.

Wow! I thought I was impressive because I've been to two old Minnesota Twins stadiums.

Until next time.

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Target Field is Open!!

The Minnesota Twins opened their brand-new ballpark with a 5-2 win over the Red Sox yesterday!

target field

The Twins ground crew has opted to go with a simple criss-cross roller pattern on the lovely real grass. It was a beautiful day for the game.

Here's a nice video tour of the new ballpark. Pay attention to the part about some of the seats having wooden backs!

New ballparks don't spring up overnight; the groundbreaking for Target Field was August 30, 2007. No new ballpark post would be complete without a time lapse video of its construction. MLB apparently doesn't like people to embed it's videos so I'll just leave the link here.

It's a beautiful ballpark, and someday I'd love to sit in any one of the 39,504 seats and take in a game.

Until next time.

Sunday, April 11, 2010

Adios Texas Stadium!!

Texas Stadium was imploded this morning.

Until next time.

Saturday, April 10, 2010

New Jersey: Home of New Stadiums

Things have been quite busy in The Garden State as of late! The New York Red Bulls opened their brand new soccer-specific stadium recently, and today was the 'soft-opening' of the New Meadowlands with a lacrosse triple-header.

The Red Bulls hosted the Chicago Fire in their first Major League Soccer game March 27 and the reviews are positive. The New York Times had a nice animated infographic on the stadium. You can check it out here.

Just up the expressway (sorry, I don't have the exit number), New Meadowlands stadium opened today with three lacrosse games. I don't have any quality photos yet, but here is a nice video about the stadium.

Discussing the inside of the new Meadowlands Stadium

Next sporting event there will be a soccer friendly between Mexico and Ecuador.

Outside New Jersey, tomorrow, Sunday April 11 will see out Texas Stadium. It hosted it's first Cowboys game October of 1971, nearly 40 years ago. I'll post some video of the implosion this week.

Until next time.

Friday, April 9, 2010

Vandals Strike in Ann Arbor

Vandals recently struck at Michigan Stadium:

Michigan stadium,midfield

Money quote:

Damage to the block “M” at the 50-yard line of Michigan Stadium in a weekend vandalism incident likely was done with a large utility knife and caused $1,500 to $2,000 in damage, the stadium's facility manager said Wednesday morning.
A 6-foot by 8-inch chunk of FieldTurf was carved out of the block "M" in a similar fashion someone would cut carpet, Chris Ehman said.

The damage is expected to be repaired in time for the spring football game next weekend.

Until next time.

Friday, April 2, 2010

Blogger ALMOST Suckered in April Fools Joke!!

Sorry I've been away. I've been taking a hiatus to attend to some things.

But I had to come back for this....


LSU has topped Eastern Washington and chosen to go PURPLE with their new field turf!

Or are they?

Money Quote:

The turf will be installed by Turfus and Sons, a subsidiary of Vandalay Industries, which is the largest producer of the rubber material found underneath dangerous playground equipment.

Vandelay Industries? I'll admit, I almost swallowed this one hook, line, and sinker. If I hadn't waited a day, I would've posted a breathless report. Thankfully I waited a day and read the whole 'press release'.

Well played, LSU!

Until next time.