The process of updating TCF Bank Stadium for use by the Vikings is well underway, as we watched construction crews rip out the artificial surface field on Tuesday as they prepare to put heating elements in for the pro season.
The rip-out is expected to be finished by the end of the week, but by this morning there was already substantial progress with about half the turf gone. The new heated field is expected to be ready to go by June. The original field didn't have the heating elements because the regular-season in college is over in November and postseason games are played elsewhere, of course. In the NFL, the Vikings have regular-season games in December and potentially two home playoff games in January. Anyone who watched Brett Favre get smashed to the rock-hard turf in December of 2010 at TCF Bank Stadium after the Metrodome roof collapse knows the danger of an unheated turf field.
In any event, the field looked far different Tuesday than it did Saturday for the Gophers' spring game. Have a look-see: