ANN ARBOR, Mich. (WLNS) – The new video boards at Michigan Stadium are as intricate as they are impressive.
The boards measure 179 feet wide by 62 feet high and have over five and a half miles of cable running through them.
The new boards, of course, feature the iconic Block M on the back, providing an unmistakable sign to everyone that they are approaching one of the cathedrals of college football.
The size of the entire structure of the new video boards is 85 percent larger than the old boards and they feature a nearly 120 percent increase in total video space.
The new video boards were necessary because the technology of the old boards had become obsolete.
“I think a lot of fans, and understandably, they don’t have the knowledge of everything that goes on with infrastructure within an event that they’re at,” said Associate Athletic Director Kurt Svoboda. “So what makes all of this stuff necessary is what’s called obsolescence in the industry. So these things are only designed to last about 10 years, and that’s if you’re lucky.”
In terms of square feet, each video board would be the third largest in all of college football, trailing Auburn’s Jordan-Hare Stadium and Purdue’s Ross-Ade Stadium. However, Auburn and Purdue have only one video board, Michigan Stadium will have identical boards behind each end zone.
The project was funded by Michigan Athletics and its donors. No outside money from the university or the state was used, according to Svoboda.
Over 35,000 work hours have been put into the project by three different construction companies and the project is on pace to be fully completed in time for Michigan’s home opener against East Carolina on Sep. 2nd.
“This is really a fan-facing initiative and we hope that people are going to be wowed and really overjoyed when they get in the stadium,” said Svoboda.