Foreman Field will also get new turf and new scoreboard in 2019, apart from the $65 million renovation

25 April 2018

When Old Dominion announced it had finalized plans last week for a $65 million renovation of Foreman Field, replacing the 10-year-old scoreboard and artificial turf weren’t a part of the football stadium makeover.

But athletic director Wood Selig said Tuesday that the stadium will have both a new scoreboard and a new Astroturf field when renovations are completed in 2019.

Selig said ODU annually sets aside money for upgrading facilities and that the field and scoreboard have outlived their useful life. If the stadium wasn’t undergoing a renovation beginning in November, ODU probably would be replacing both the field and scoreboard this summer.

The same funds were used recently to replace the scoreboard and install ribbon scoreboards at the Ted Constant Convocation Center.

“Scoreboards are high tech, and you’ve got to really protect them,” he said. “If we put it in now and demolish the stadium, we run the risk of damaging it during construction. It makes no sense to invest $1 million or $2 million and put that investment at risk.

“The same thing is true of the field. You have to cover it and protect it during the demolition. It just makes sense to get one more year out of the field and replace it in 2019.”

ODU has money in hand for the new turf, which is expected to cost about $1 million. Selig said ODU has some money set aside for a new scoreboard but that additional fundraising or corporate sponsorship may be necessary to install the kind of scoreboard the school desires.

The current board was state of the art when the stadium was partially renovated for ODU’s start-up football program in 2009, but it now lacks the high resolution of modern scoreboards. Selig said the scoreboard will be supplemented with ribbon scoreboards on both the east and west sides.

The new scoreboard may be used only for highlights and statistics, with the score and clock kept on the ribbon scoreboards.

“What we have now is rudimentary,” he said. “What we’re going to have is going to be bigger, more colorful, more exciting. It’s going to be high resolution.”

Selig said the existing turf probably could last for a few more years.

“It’s not a hazard or a health concern,” he said. “But we have reached the 10-year mark of any synthetic surface life expectancy.”

Stephen Ballard, head of S.B. Ballard Construction company, which is expected to do the renovation, said not having to worry about damaging the field will make the demolition easier and faster.

Selig said ODU’s football practice field at the L.R. Hill Sports Complex, installed in 2008, likely will be replaced in 2019 as well.