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Longhorns spend almost $430,000 installing new FieldTurf inside Royal-Memorial Stadium

Texas officials paid almost $430,000 for FieldTurf USA to take out the old artificial surface inside Royal-Memorial Stadium, seen here, and install a new surface with end zones that better resemble the burnt orange color.

Paying someone to mow your lawn every other week costs about $40, give or take the lot size. For Texas athletics, the cost of a new artificial surface at Royal-Memorial Stadium cost $429,906.

FieldTurf USA, Inc. recently completed the installation of a new surface inside the football stadium featuring a “multi-lay, dual-polymer fiber” and end zones with “the distinctive burnt orange coloring.”

The total cost of the new FieldTurf and purchasing order was obtained by the American-Statesman through an open records request. 

Texas athletic director Chris Del Conte has long wanted to switch back to natural grass. However, the surface inside the football stadium gets quite a workout during the fall. The band practices inside the stadium along with the football team, a workload that would wear down a grass field.

So Del Conte sprung for a new artificial surface. The purchasing order states that FieldTurf would install one “Longhorn silhouette” logo at midfield, two Big 12 Conference logos and spell out “Texas” and “Longhorns” in the two end zones. 

Replacing the old carpet for a new one was dramatically cheaper than had UT started from scratch, Del Conte said.

Soon, those Big 12 logos might have to be removed for new Southeastern Conference logos. Texas and OU have started the process of leaving the Big 12 for the SEC.

More:Texas sends critical letter to Big 12 officials, signaling the Longhorns intend to leave for SEC

Recent photos taken from the south end zone construction camera indicate Texas considered having the state of Texas designed at midfield. However, the purchasing order says nothing about a permanent silhouette. Mostly it details “numbers, yard lines and hash marks.”

The new field installation was scheduled to be completed July 18 “to allow for sufficient time to condition prior to the 2021 football season.”

Contact Brian Davis by phone or text at 512-445-3957. Email bdavis@statesman.com or @BDavisAAS.