Kansas Athletics To Install FieldTurf On Kivisto Field At Memorial Stadium
May 19, 2009
LAWRENCE, Kan. — The University of Kansas will install FieldTurf on Kivisto Field at Memorial Stadium, it was announced Tuesday by KU Athletics Director Lew Perkins and FieldTurf CEO Joe Fields.
The installation will commence in late May, and the new state-of-the-art FieldTurf surface will officially debut on September 5 when the Jayhawks open the 2009 season by hosting Northern Colorado. Last August, FieldTurf installed two full-sized football practice fields adjacent to KU’s Anderson Family Football Complex.
More than 60 teams in the NCAA currently play their home games on FieldTurf, including five others in the Big 12 Conference, and several in the Big 10, Pacific-10, Big East and Atlantic Coast Conference. Twenty-one National Football League teams also use FieldTurf in their stadiums and/or practice facilities. In a recent poll of more than 1,500 NFL players, four of the top five and eight of the top 10 artificial turf fields in the league are FieldTurf. In addition, according to the players’ vote, four of the league’s top 10 surfaces are FieldTurf.
“FieldTurf is universally recognized as a top-of-the-line playing surface,” said Kansas Football Coach Mark Mangino, who has led the Jayhawks to four bowl games in six years, including back-to-back victories (2008 Orange Bowl and this season’s Insight Bowl). “We’re excited that we will be playing on a surface that so many NFL and top collegiate teams also use. And the fact that our new practice fields are also FieldTurf is a real benefit for our players.”
“Memorial Stadium is one of the most historically significant stadiums in college football, and it’s an honor to now be part of the tradition of that facility,” said Fields. “Kansas will be getting our latest-and-greatest product, and it will mesh well with the two practice fields that we installed for the Jayhawks last summer. And the fact that so many Big 12 teams will now be playing their home games on FieldTurf will also be a positive factor as KU’s coaches prepare the players for the conference season.”
The Jayhawks have played their home games on artificial turf continuously since 1970. The new FieldTurf surface will be the stadium’s fifth turf field and it will replace the AstroPlay that was installed in 2000.
Built prior to the 1921 season to honor Kansas students who fought in World War I, Memorial Stadium is the nation’s seventh-oldest stadium. Thus, the 2009 campaign will mark KU’s 89th season at Memorial, which has a current seating capacity of 50,071. Only six other Division I universities currently play in older stadiums (Cincinnati, Georgia Tech, Mississippi State, Oklahoma State, Washington and Wisconsin).
FieldTurf is the global market leader in synthetic sports fields, with more than 3,000 installed. FieldTurf is part of Tarkett Sports, a Division of the Tarkett Group. Tarkett Sports is the largest entity in the sports and landscape surfacing industries. All Tarkett Sports surfaces are developed, produced and installed with a concentration on sustainability and a commitment to protecting the environment.