WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. (WLFI) — For more than 90 years, evening games at Ross-Ade have been a challenge.
“At this point to not have lights in a college football stadium, particularly at this level, is just not realistic,” Director of Purdue Athletics Mike Bobinksi said.
He said a lack of permanent stadium lighting is costing the university. Bobinski said renting lights to illuminate Ross-Ade after dark costs around $60,000.
“It becomes really cumbersome and not particularly modern or efficient,” said Bobinski.
However, a more than $5 million investment is set to change that.
On Friday, university trustees approved a plan to install permanent field lighting at Ross-Ade Stadium. It would meet Big Ten requirements for night football games that will be scheduled by the conference in the future.
“We’ll be able to not only play at the noon slot, we’ll be able to play in the mid-afternoon slot,” said Bobinski. “We’ll be able to play in the evening slot on occasion. So it just gives the league and us a lot more scheduling flexibility.”
Bobinski said it will also create a better experience for those watching from home.
“This will just give us the ability to never feel like our games aren’t going to look right from Ross-Ade Stadium,” said Bobinski.
Some Boilermakers are beaming at the thought of more evening games.
“Having it on Saturdays — it’s a little tougher to go to games, but I think a night game would be a lot of fun,” said Purdue sophomore Hunter Prescott.
Purdue freshmen Chloe Brengman added, “I would enjoy going to night football games. I think they definitely add more of an atmosphere to the game.”
The project will be paid for through gift funds. Work is is set to begin in March and is should be done by August.