It is almost impossible to ignore the towering structure that is Amon Carter Stadium. The stadium is currently undergoing a $143 million renovation. Construction is nothing new to TCU students and faculty. However, the stadium construction has affected life on campus like nothing before. TCU will not play any night games this season. Frog fans have had to travel to watch their team compete against their top completion. The whole game atmosphere has changed; the stadium is much quieter now that more than 11,000 seats are missing.
Students have also noticed a change surrounding the game day atmosphere.
“More people are tailgating, less are going to the actual game, because of construction and the time of the games,” senior Cash Cassell said.
TCU has changed multiple kickoff times in games this year. Games against Portland State and SMU were rescheduled. For last week’s game vs. Portland State, the kickoff time was changed to 1 p.m. TCU’s annual battle against SMU for the Iron Skillet changed from a primetime Friday Night game, which would have been nationally televised, to a regular 2:30pm kickoff on CBS sports.
One possible reason for TCU defensive struggles is the reduction of crowd noise at home games. Almost 11,000 seats are missing from the stadium, in addition to nearly 1,200 parking spots. Both of these significantly reduce the amount of fans showing up to games. The stadium is still under construction, making it difficult to recognize some of the basic features of a TCU game.
“I don’t even know where the Frog Horn is,” senior Andrew Walker said.
The construction may have also been part of the decision to relocate the Fiesta Bowl rematch to Boise State’s blue turf.
“I was disappointed to have the game moved,” sophomore Will Meachumsaid. “I wanted to a big game this year.” The limits imposed by the construction gave the Mountain West another reason to move the game beside TCU departing to the Big East.
This is a year of transition for TCU football. Changing conferences and stadiums might be a sign that TCU has made it to big-time stage of college football.
Sophomore Meredith Reese said the new stadium will be somewhat of a reward for winning the Rose Bowl.
“(The stadium) is a present for our Rose Bowl victory,” Reese said.
TCU Chancellor Victor J. Boschini compared the new stadium to other state-of-the-art structures built in the past.
“We will have the ‘Camden Yards’ of college football stadiums,” Boschini said, “It will be first class in every regard, and will mirror the quality of our football program led by head coach Gary Patterson.”