Notre Dame sells over 1,100 patches of stadium field grass

Synthetic turf is coming to Notre Dame Stadium, so the university sold its storied sod to fans and supporters.

Posted on May 21, 2014 at 6:16 p.m.

NOTRE DAME — Joe Stachler had to admit it was the most expensive patch of grass he’s ever purchased.

“Yes,” he said, holding the crate of field grass from Notre Dame Stadium. “I can say that with all sincerity.”

Stachler, of South Bend, joined hundreds of other Notre Dame fans who have purchased 2-foot-by-5-foot patches of Notre Dame Stadium’s storied sod since Monday, May 19. 

After years of struggling to maintain natural grass, the university announced in April that it would install artificial turf in time for the 2014 football season. Construction began after commencement weekend, May 16-18. While Notre Dame representatives sold the grass in the shade of the stadium Tuesday, bulldozers ripped up the field behind them.

The new synthetic field is expected to be ready by Aug. 15.

Notre Dame initially sold the rolls online for $150 a piece before selling them outside of the stadium Tuesday for $100. Lacey Love, an event manager with the football program, said online pre-sales surpassed 1,100 patches of grass. 

Stachler said he plans to plant his patch of grass in the backyard, adding to his vast array of Notre Dame collectibles at home. He already dug out a 2-foot-by-5-foot section to make room for the stadium grass.

“I think a lot of people want to try to plant it,” Love said. “We also had somebody kicking around the idea of buying 300 pieces and putting it in his own yard.”

She has also heard of people freeze-drying the grass to put in commemorative boxes. She isn’t sure what Notre Dame will do with any unsold sections of grass, but she thinks the rolls will be replanted elsewhere and potentially sold again later.

Love said the proceeds from the sales went to the Notre Dame athletic department.

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