An awful lot of attention was applied to an ESPN blog post about “toughest” football stadiums in the ACC throughout the conference’s footprint this week.
You would think that everything that could be said on the topic would have been said…but there are actually a few follow-ups that we wanted to share with the community.
* First, we have to give some major kudos to Heather Dinich. Seriously. Ms. Dinich actually watched, listened and learned from the reactions of her readers and she then re-issued an updated version of her rankings. On one hand, it is very cool that someone doesn’t choose to dig-in their heels and not consider the opinions of others. On the other hand, for someone who runs ESPN’s ACC Football blog to be so far off base with her initial entry is really scary.
* Dinich moved Carter-Finley all the way to #4 (from #11) and knocked Kenan Stadium to #6 – still significantly higher than almost every other similar rankings from respected sources. Even scarier may be her appreciation for Georgia Tech (at #5). The following are her new comments on State and Carolina:
4. NC State, Carter-Finley Stadium (57,500) — The fairly new facilities here are impressive, but it lacks tradition.
PR No. 11 — I was stuck on the lack of tradition with this program, and lack of recent wins, but Wolfpack fans are passionate enough to compensate for that. I heard them at the Raleigh Regional baseball games and read their e-mails yesterday.
6. UNC, Kenan Stadium (60,000) — This place is just the right size, and the picturesque pine trees make this one of the nicest venues in the league. Butch Davis has an amazing view of all of it from his office.
PR 4 — Argue all you want about this spot, but the intimate setting here is great for fans and the facilities here should impress any recruit.
* ^Intimate setting is great for fans? What fans? The MIDGETS who are the only people that can fit into the ridiculously tight seats? Or the triathletes who can park three miles from the stadium and hike the hills to get to their seats before kickoff? Hopefully not the thousands seats or so that are on the first 5 or 6 rows where you can’t see over the players on the benches. Or the seats beyond the 10 yard line whos sightlines are amongst the worst possible. If ANYTHING can tell you WHERE journalists disconnect with the real world, it would be comments like these.
* You see, Ms. Dinich (like all journalists) is a “fan” who gets to park in the media parking lot and watch the game from the comfort of the press box. So, she has NO CLUE what is really like to be a fan in one of these midget-seats with horrible sightlines amongst a fan base whose security actually forces fans to SIT down during games. But, DAMN they have some pretty trees!!
Next, we’d like to direct you to two other good blogs that picked up on this story and posted some good stuff.
(1) First, Hugging Harold Reynolds did a nice entry and proposed their own rankings that seem very consistent with the rankings of SFN, the N&O, and The Sporting News that we have previously highlighted. They also put Carter-Finley 4th, Scott Stadium 5th and Kenan 10th.
(2) Also, two authors at BC Interruption take a personal look at stadiums of Boston College opponents through the years. It doesn’t appear they’ve been to Carter-Finley yet (or they may have chosen to change their allegiances after their visit just like their old Head Coach!) What do these guys think about the Kenan Stadium experience that Ms. Dinich still defends?
Baby blue is so not manly that it almost has the Iowa pink locker room effect which makes you forget that you are at a football game and you just want to scan the student section for co-eds. It makes for a very non-VT like home field advantage.
Their author ranks Kenan 5th in his top five simply because he has only been to about five away games. (LOL!)
5. Kenan Stadium, UNC – I need to attend more away games so this gets knocked off the list.