Coming HomeGAMBIER, Ohio (September 29, 2004) Homecoming Weekend will be a return to campus not only for hundreds of Kenyon alumni, but also for the College's football team. When the Lords host the Oberlin College Yeomen this Saturday at 1 p.m., they will take to a newly renovated McBride Field, marking the first time the team has played on home turf since fall 2002.
When kickoff gets under way, the Lords and Yeomen will be running on McBride's new OmniGrass surface, a synthetic turf considered to be the safest on the market. The artificial turf, which also is used by the National Football League's Baltimore Ravens, replaced a worn grass field in place since the site's dedication in 1962.
The field was renovated in conjunction with the construction of Kenyon's new Center for Fitness, Recreation, and Athletics. Scheduled to open in fall 2005, the center will serve the needs of everyone from the casual jogger and the weekend hoopster to the fitness fanatic and the varsity athlete.
"Obviously the new field is going to be a huge lift for the program," Head Coach Ted Stanley says. "It will be great to return home and play in front of a strong fan base that will include more of our student body."
The OmniGrass surface features a two-and-a-half inch face width that provides more grass underfoot for better traction and durability. OmniGrass also holds a rubber infill of cryogenically processed particles that trap air between them, causing compaction to become virtually impossible. Below the surface are four layers of primary backing for shock absorption and strength.
In addition to its pristine surface, McBride now is surrounded by a new, top-of-the-line SCG Invitational 1000 track with eight lanes and ten sprint lanes. The 400-meter track's impermeable surface, which has a depth of 14mm, is set on a layer of rubberized asphalt, providing a firm hold with strong retention.
While McBride was undergoing its facelift, the Lords football team played its last six 'home' games at nearby Yellow Jacket Stadium in Mt. Vernon. The last time the team played on McBride Field was during a 22-10 win over Hiram College on October 26, 2002.