Cal announced today that the newly installed artificial turf on Witter Rugby Field will have to be replaced "in order to assure safety and suitability for student-athletes and intramural sports teams" due to unanticipated structural issues. The field was converted from natural grass to an artificial surface in the fall.
"The structural base and drainage systems are simply not performing as required, and we are moving swiftly and aggressively to rectify the situation," said Bob Milano Jr., Assistant Athletic Director for Capital Planning and Management.
The repairs should be completed by early June. Cal's football spring practice, which starts Tuesday, March 29, will move to two primary venues - Golden Bear Field on Cal's Clark Kerr Campus and Laney College in Oakland. All football team workouts are closed to the public except on the following dates - April 2 (Laney), April 9 (Grant High School, Sacramento), April 16 (Valley Christian High School, San Jose) and April 30 (San Ramon Valley High School, Danville). The off-site practices in Sacramento, San Jose and Danville had been previously scheduled.
"Although we are disappointed that the physical condition of the turf at Witter Rugby Field will not allow us to hold our practices at the facility this spring, it is important that we do everything possible to ensure the safety of our players," head football coach Jeff Tedford said. "Moving our spring practices is something that we've determined is necessary for us to do while the turf is being repaired."