WATCH: Turf issues become obvious during first half of Oregon-UNC Holiday Bowl

by:Austin Brezina12/28/22


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Photo by Jevone Moore/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

As the first half took a toll on the field for the Holiday Bowl between Oregon and North Carolina, turf issues became more and more apparent on the converted Petco Park field. Before the game, video surfaced of the turf splitting apart along the sidelines, with visible gaps between the sections of the field.

Later on in the second quarter, the field began to show much worse wear and tear — specifically on the part of the field that covered the baseball diamond underneath.

Turf issues affecting Holiday Bowl

During a late red zone drive by the Tar Heels, the damage became far more apparent as they were near the 20-yard line and the field was visibly chopped up and torn in spots.

Viewers from around the sports world caught a glimpse of the conditions and began to express their concern for the players playing on a field that was breaking down — especially as injury concerns are already high during bowl season.

“The field in the Holiday Bowl isn’t in optimal shape,” was all ESPN’s Booger McFarland commented on the turf conditions.

“This turf at the Holiday Bowl is an abomination. Someone could get seriously injured,” added ESPN’s Andrea Adelson.

The field appeared to be having most of its problems because the turf was laid on top of the usual San Diego Padres baseball field and became damaged from heavy rainfall in the area before the game. During the broadcast, Joel Klatt broke down that the field appeared to be most damaged on the end zone that was located above the base path — where the rainfall had caused the turf to not drain properly and remain wet.

Adding to the difficulties faced by both teams during the game with a deteriorating field, multiple game breaks were needed during the first half to give grounds crews time to fix damages and keep the field useable.