Blogs and Commentary

posted 06.21.2012 at 5.24 p.m. by Corey McLaughlin

New Maryland Turf Field Promises To Be 'Cool'

Image courtesy Maryland

You can't tell just looking at the above rendering, but Maryland's new football and men's lacrosse field is going to be cool, as in not like the 102-degree high temperature in Baltimore on Thursday.

Maryland on Wednesday formally announced plans for and unveiled renderings of a new FieldTurf Revolution surface to be installed at Byrd Stadium, featuring a heat-reducing technology that promises to provide a difference of up to 15 degrees Fahrenheit versus traditional rubber infill systems.

The new field, funded by private donations, is already under construction and will be competed by the start of the Terps' 2012 football season. It will be green, not black or gray as had been rumored and discussed. But it will feature images of the Maryland state flag in each of the end zones.

The heat-reducing technology is called CoolPlay, which, "coupled with the patented silica sand and cryogenic rubber infill, will provide the facility with the 'coolest' infill technology," according to a Maryland press release.

So, gone are the days of the dirt and mud in front of Maryland and opposing goalies. Gone is another venue in which an unpredictable bounce shot can be used. A cooler, safer turf surface is in. A ceremony to unveil the field will take place in August.

"Having a field that is safer for our student-athletes and plays so much cooler is very important," Maryland coach John Tillman said. The fact that it will look terrific and be a great asset to [football coach Randy] Edsall and I when we are recruiting makes it that much better. I am excited not only for our student-athletes but for everyone associated with the University of Maryland."

It's good news for Maryland's athletic department as a whole, because the school plans to cut eight of its 27 varsity sports on July 1 as it faces a multimillion-dollar budget deficit.