If you were watching either of the 2 preseason games, you would have seen that the turf is in terrible shape. But, the answer why the turf is in bad shape is simple. Lots of events at the stadium over the summer, and lots of South Florida rain over the past 3 months.
But... if you are an avid Finatics.com follower on Facebook, you would have known that brand new turf was laid right before the Ravens game on August 17. And guess what? We will have more new turf before we kick off the season on September 10.
We love Mr. Ross. Mr. Ross spares NO EXPENSES. He wants things right. So, as you read on, you’ll see that the field will be re-sodded multiple times over the summer. I’m sure that it was done with the best intensions. But... sometimes nature does not take its course. Or, when it tries to, there is a Metallica concert. It has also rained a ton in South Florida during the past few months. That has not helped the situation.
We do not claim to be NFL detectives; we’ve just kept track of what has been going on at the stadium this year. Plus, we really like to watch the Hard Rock Stadium webcam. It’s cool to see what’s happening at the stadium. But we really like to watch it to see how the ground crew will have the field painted before the next game. If you would like to do the same, you can access the Hard Rock Stadium webcam yourself here...
So. Let’s review what we’ve tracked at the stadium since June:
June 11 – U2 concert. That was a GREAT show! Turf was covered by boards for general admission, then uncovered. Turf aired out.
July 7 – Metallica concert. Turf was covered by boards for general admission, then uncovered and aired out.
July 26 – International Champions Cup Soccer. Paris St. Germain vs. Juventus
July 28 – Practice for International Champions Cup Soccer
July 29 - International Champions Cup Soccer: El Classico – Barcelona vs. Real Madrid. Yea, soccer players (and yes, I am calling them “soccer” players, and not that “F” word), they run around a lot, and wear the turf, but I got to think that at least 5 soccer matches would do the damage of just 1 NFL football game.
August 5 – Dolphins inter squad scrimmage. Dolphins complained about the turf conditions after the scrimmage.
August 10 – Preseason game vs. Atlanta Falcons. At this point, the turf really showed wear. Dolphins complained about the turf conditions again.
August 12 – University of Miami scrimmage, and Canes Fest. This, adding to an already deteriorating situation.
August 14-15 – Turf was ripped up, and re-sodded just 2 days before the Dolphins vs. Ravens preseason game.
August 17 – Baltimore Ravens game. Grass does not root in 2 days. So, having a new turf sounded great. But, I had a feeling that things were not going to go well for the game. And it didn’t from what we all saw from the TV coverage, and player complaints after the game.
August 22 – Decisions from the days following the Ravens game leads to replacing the turf yet again. Turf is partially removed, but east end zone is spared for event on the next day.
August 23 – Some sort of youth football event at the stadium. Lots of Dolphins alumni at the stadium, on the field, throwing the ball around. But, the event happened only on a partial east end zone (pictured).
August 24 – The rest of the turf is ripped up, and soil aired out. New turf will NOT go down yet, because…
August 28 – Coldplay Concert. This concert will be slightly different from the U2 and Metallica concerts earlier in the summer because there will be assigned seating on the field. All those seats on the field, with all that weight on top of boarding would certainly mess up brand new turf if it were laid before the concert.
August 29 – Cleanup from Coldplay concert.
August 30 – Estimated date for new turf to be laid.
September 2 – Opening day for the University of Miami Hurricanes. The turf will be about 3 days old. Hoping that it does not rain for the Hurricane! It will be a mess.
So Finatics.. That leaves us with the hope that the turf will be in perfect shape 8 days later September 10 when the Dolphins will open the season against the Buccaneers. From experience, the turf that I just laid in my yard did not root in 11 days. It especially would not have if a UM stampede went through it on the 3rd day that it was laid.
Last Debbie Downer point.. We have firsthand knowledge that while the Hard Rock Stadium turf that has been used at the stadium is some excellent grade of grass, it does not grow well in South Florida. And, it certainly does not grow well if it is overwatered. That is hard to believe since virtually everything grows in South Florida. But, rumor has it that a new grade of turf will be laid on August 30. We just hope that we have something playable for the Dolphins on opening day.