OT: TCF Bank Stadium

Submitted by dakotapalm on August 27th, 2009 at 1:29 AM

www.douggoon.com

I came across his photography pages and he has a (literal) few pictures of the new Gopher Stadium. It's no Big House, but the high quality pictures that he posted make the stadium look absolutely gorgeous. Looks like a good place for Big Ten football. Thought some people on the board might enjoy a couple of high quality pictures.

Comments

TheIcon34

August 27th, 2009 at 1:41 AM ^

Since I have several family members in the twin cities, I'm planning to go to every Michigan game in Minnesota. I hope all the games will be in November, since it is perfect football weather. I hope, in November, for the Vikings vs. Bears game is the last time I go to the Metrodome. The Vikings need to get an outdoor stadium going and join the likes of Chicago and Green Bay in having the perfect outdoor stadium in freezing temps.

Anyways, does it bother anyone that the screen in the Minnesota end zone is not lined up in the center? It's strange hearing about a "brand new stadium" in the Big 10, much less anywhere in college football.

jg2112

August 27th, 2009 at 9:15 AM ^

to TCF. There are two major reasons why the scoreboard is off center:

(1) If you are looking to the west, just slightly to the left of the scoreboard, you can see the Minneapolis skyline;

(2) It's slightly off center so the premium seating people on the south side of the stadium can see it better.

CarrIsMyHomeboy

August 27th, 2009 at 1:55 AM ^

Has anyone generated an e-pinion that compares Michigan Stadium's eventual suites, indoor/outdoor club seating, and private/club concourses (for which we now have photos, if not only artistic renderings) to those of other college stadiums?

What do ours look like in comparison to those within the Big Ten, even? Minnesota's look very nice (can you believe that locker room, by the way? It's freaking huge; 70-80yards long, I'd estimate; it's way more spacious and impressive than ours, I believe). How about OSU's? MSU's? Wisconsin's? And so on and so forth.

If you've generated such an e-pinion based on personal experience or excessive cyber stalking of our opponents' digs, then I'd like to hear it.

The King of Belch

August 27th, 2009 at 5:45 AM ^

I remain skeptical about this. I know the GoopherDome was a hole and all, but what is Minnesota's overall commitment to football and what is their real viability to justify this thing?

Gonna look funny, all pretty and shiny and stuff, and empty because the team is 4-8 forever.

Will Brewster stay? Can they possibly land Seantrel Henderson as a cornerstone? This is one to watch.

Ballsy move, though. Gotta give them that.

kmd

August 27th, 2009 at 6:58 AM ^

I think having their stadium off-campus has really limited them (not much of a football historian, but I've heard their program started to tank around the same time they moved to the Metrodome), and there's the hope that this will turn things around. Not many students came to the games because it was hard to get to, which lead to a dull environment and largely kills the home-field advantage. I'd imagine it's also pretty inconvenient to have your game stadium separate from where you practice/watch game film/get medical treatment/etc. Things like that can really hurt recruiting, which is doubly damaging when you already have the hurdle of being the coldest major university in the country.

There's also some other considerations not directly related to the success of the football program. The Twin Cities area is really big on the concept of community, and I've seen that come across in their promotions for the stadium. When they have a home game, that's going to be the only athletic event happening on campus (with one exception they couldn't schedule around). Sure, some of the reason might just be for logistical purposes, but I think it also sends the message of 'this is where you should be on football Saturdays'. So beyond helping the success of the football team, they're also trying to use the on-campus stadium as a way to bring the university community together. If you think about Michigan, the football program is a big part of the school's identity, and going to games at Michigan Stadium is by far the most common shared experience tying together alumni across the generations. Minnesota might not be as successful as Michigan and probably won't be a Big Ten title contender, but as long as they're a somewhat competitive program there should be the same effect. I'd imagine they hope that the stadium can act as the face of the university, give students something to be proud of, and sort of become the centerpiece of campus.

Another minor point that I haven't seen often mentioned is that the University of Minnesota is sorely lacking in outdoor athletic fields. The field won't be dedicated to football, it will also be used for other things like IM sports.

Brodie

August 27th, 2009 at 7:52 AM ^

Well, there are circumstances where an off campus stadium can work... Pitt, for example, doesn't really have choice because their campus is over developed and they make good use of Heinz Field. The problem in Minnesota is that the Metrodome, like most sports venues built in the 70's, was outdated from the moment it opened it's doors and was far from the campus in an area of town that was hard to get to pre-light rail.

Brodie

August 29th, 2009 at 5:46 PM ^

Pretty much. The idea at the time was to build something as cheaply as possible while making it as profitable as possible (ie. having as many seats as possible). The Joe is another great example of this. Compare with arenas built today where the 20,000+ person capacities are less important than large concourses and usable bathrooms.

FabFiver5

August 27th, 2009 at 10:41 AM ^

Heinz Field is super close to Pitt's campus though. At Minnesota, most students have to take shuttle buses to the Metrodome since (if I remember correctly from my last visit) is across a major expressway.

I could be wrong on that last part, but I don't think it's all that close. I remember hearing students remark that they all leave the games early because it takes so much time to get back home.

jg2112

August 27th, 2009 at 9:22 AM ^

there was a recent article up here in the Red Star that, once the Metrodump opened, they would bring recruits over to Metrodump, drop them off in the snow and let them fend for themselves in DT Mpls.

Their recruiting "lounge" was an outdoor tent outside Metrodump. Now, there is a nice lounge inside the stadium.

You ask the question, will Brewster say. The question is, does he get kicked out? He can recruit, but he cannot coach. His coordinators now are a former Broncos QB coach, who he was friends with, and Ronnie Lee (ugh) and Kevin Cosgrove on the defense, both of whom were his buddies. Cosgrove is troubling - he was plain out of work after Nebraska, though I think he should do better not having to deal with the Big 12 passing spread offenses.

This is a pivotal year for Minnesota. Their schedule is incredibly tough - Cal, Air Force, Wisconsin, Illinois and Sparty at home. Next year too, USC, Ohio State, Penn State and Iowa at home. This is setting up similar to Nebraska in 2007. If the Gophers go 4-8 or 5-7 this year, and then USC comes in and lays 50 on them, Brewster could be run out. This is even more of a possibility given that Tommy Tuberville, Philip Fulmer (both of whom recruit better than Brewster) and, in a stretch Tony Dungy (who is a Gopher alum), are all out there and could replace the Brew, who doesn't get along with the AD.

One other thing - the Gophers have the third-lowest APR (in 07-08 it was 887) and lost 3 scholarships last year. Brewster's attrition is worse than Rodriguez's.

Bob Probert Owns You

August 27th, 2009 at 7:11 AM ^

I live in the Twin Cities and the stadium is really friggin' nice. The worst thing about it, from a fan standpoint, is that it won't serve alcohol like the Metrodome did. I loved going to Michigan games at the dome and being able to drink a few cold ones while watching the Wolverines go undefeated at that venue.

I will miss the suds.

Tacopants

August 27th, 2009 at 12:11 PM ^

Minnesota TC has a student population of around 50k now. Now that the stadium is closer more students will buy tickets, and if Minny ever gets consistently good tickets might be hard to come by

That would suck, considering I'm moving to Minneapolis.

Don

August 27th, 2009 at 9:27 AM ^

Football is meant to be played outside in the weather... heat, cold, snow, rain, and mud if there's grass. If Bill Martin had put a roof over the Big House I would never come to a game again and would largely cease being a fan. Once the Lions moved to the Silverdome I stopped caring about that godforsaken franchise.

Tacopants

August 27th, 2009 at 12:15 PM ^

I'm just going to throw this out there: football originally was supposed to be played on grass. Field Turf (the synthetic stuff with the black rubber pellets) is a gigantic improvement. It offers more traction and a more consistent surface, add in that its much easier to maintain, and now you can see how it's gotten into widespread use in just 5-6 years.

st barth

August 27th, 2009 at 9:55 AM ^

i'm probably in the minority...but i rather like the metrodome. i saw a twins-orioles and it was very pleasant. i would imagine that it would be even better for the louder/more raucous football crowds.

i also think they will sorely miss the roof come november. in fact, i wish michigan would have added a dome during the renovation.

saveferris

August 27th, 2009 at 10:11 AM ^

I saw Michigan play the 'Phers in the Dome in 1998 (U of M won 15-10). The only good thing the Metrodome was that they served alcohol since it wasn't a Big 10 facility. Bit of a surreal experience to watch U of M while sipping on a brewski. Only other time I saw Michigan play in a road venue that served booze was at Syracuse.

Blazefire

August 27th, 2009 at 11:10 AM ^

I did initially neg you, but then I saw it was your first post ever so I undid it. Just be aware:

Suggesting that enclosing Michigan Stadium would EVER be a good thing is treason of the highest order. Do NOT do that. It's like saying racists have some good points.

J. Lichty

August 28th, 2009 at 5:03 PM ^

Having the stadium on campus will help with students - but it is not a cure-all given the makeup of the student body there.

Minnesota is still in very large part a commuter campus. A large number - maybe even a large majority of the students still live at home with mom and dad, or even if they live away from home, they live in apartments way of campus. Kids that go to Minnesota are just as likely to be still hanging out with their high school buddies than making many new friends at the U.

Thus while having a better venue will help with making it more inviting to come to games, i.e. if someone is going to make the effort to come into a game from Fridley or Apple Valley, having a better venue will make a difference, but the location of being on campus itself probably will not make such a difference for the commuters.

That being said, although the teams sucked in the seventies and early eighties when I went to games as a kid, at least you felt like you were at a college football game. The crowds were fun with the passing around of girls and the Lienenkugel chants. The few games I went to once they moved to the dome were not nearly as much fun.