Bryant-Denny Stadium's 5-month makeover nears completion ahead of football seasonBy Adam Greene | 08/01/2012 9:45am
By: Charlie Potter
Bryant-Denny Stadium is one of the most recognizable stadiums in all of college football, but there is more to the mammoth structure than its 101,821 seating capacity. Fans take pride in their football team, but the offseason preparations of the stadium are almost as complex as those for the team that plays in it.
The five-month process of preparing Bryant-Denny begins in the spring and runs into August. Brandon Sevedge, director of athletic facilities, oversees this project, which includes everything from repainting the walls of the stadium to replacing the grass on the field.
“It takes months of planning, coordinating and help from multiple campus partners, vendors and contractors in order to prepare the stadium for the upcoming football season,” Sevedge said.
Approximately 150-200 people are needed to prepare the facility. This half-year process involves an almost endless list of tasks that takes a small army of workers to complete.
Some walk through the seats and are in charge of applying a fresh coat of paint to the stadium’s walls. Others grab a pressure washer and make their way through the stands, ramps and exterior sidewalks. The exterior walls must be washed, too.
Cleaning restrooms and servicing kitchen equipment are also on the agenda for workers. They wax the floors, clean all the windows and check the light bulbs. Yes, every light bulb must be examined and replaced before the season kicks off.
In addition to cleaning Bryant-Denny, inspection is an equally significant part of the job. Making sure that the stadium’s features are operating correctly is crucial to the offseason preparations. Every seat and bleacher – all 101,821 of them – must be inspected for damages and replaced if necessary. The same goes for awnings and padding. Also, technicians must ensure all of the building systems are functioning properly, such as plumbing and electrical components.
All of these jobs are important, but the one aspect of the stadium that coaches, players and fans are most focused on during a game is the field. It is made up of actual grass – not artificial turf – and maintained on a daily basis for five months. Then, as the season draws closer, the grass is painted with the distinct lines and symbols the fans are used to seeing every Saturday.
The long hours and hard work that are put in during the summer months pays off in September. The combination of a nationally acclaimed facility and an elite, SEC football program gives Alabama an edge over the competition. The Tide boasts a 212-50-3 record at Bryant-Denny and a 30-5 record in Head Coach Nick Saban’s five seasons.
In the end, Sevedge and his team are rewarded by seeing their efforts unveiled in the season’s first game.
“It is very rewarding to see all of the various preparations come together and have a top-notch football stadium ready for the fans to enjoy on game days,” Sevedge said.