Athletics has started a $12.3 million Memorial Stadium Fan Experience Improvement project. The work includes replacing the stadium sound system, upgrading the wireless network, creating a game-day smartphone application, and the installation of an Internet protocol television system.
The project is scheduled for completion prior to the start of Husker football’s 125th season, which kicks off Aug. 30.
“Each of these Memorial Stadium Fan Experience Improvements are designed to provide the best college football fans in America with the best game-day experience possible,” said Shawn Eichorst, director of athletics. “It is extremely important that we strive to improve our fan experience and our customer service in all of our athletic venues. These initiatives in Memorial Stadium are a big step in ensuring that there is no better place to be on college football game day than at Nebraska.”
The new sound system will replace the 20-plus-year-old speaker cluster previously used in the stadium. The single-point source system will use a line array and beam focusing speaker technology to provide consistent audio levels throughout Memorial Stadium.
In addition, digital signal processing technology will be used to deliver sound to public address speakers in concourses, suites and common areas.
Downs Electric started installing the new sound system with the assistance of BNT Productions on April 14.
When complete, the project will include a new scoreboard design around the sound system structure. The scoreboard will display a 25-foot illuminated Nebraska “N” and be topped with a football graphic visible.
The wireless network upgrade will allow fans better access to Internet applications via smartphone and relieve call and text volumes on area cellular networks. The new Memorial Stadium system will be the largest collegiate and second-largest Cisco Connected Stadium deployment in North America — the largest is AT&T Stadium, home of the Dallas Cowboys.
Other stadiums with Cisco Connected systems include Pinnacle Bank Arena, Beaver Stadium at Penn State University, Stanford Stadium, Yankee Stadium and Bank of America Stadium, home of the Carolina Panthers.
Wireless coverage will extend beyond the stadium. Connectivity will be available at the Hawks practice facility and practice fields, Ed Weir Track, 14th and Avery parking garage, Memorial Stadium parking garage, and parking lots by the Champions Club, Memorial Mall, 501 Building, South Stadium and North Stadium.
CDW has been awarded the contract for the installation of the new wireless system. Work began April 28.
The new smartphone app will provide live and on-demand interactive content for any Internet-enabled device. The app, which is being developed by NeuLion, will feature in-depth information about the games, including exclusive streaming video content only available to those inside Memorial Stadium.
“As technology continues to improve, fans are engaging with college sports across all platforms of social media during games,” said Kelly Mosier, director of digital media. “Specifically addressing Nebraska football, we are excited that the added connectivity we are providing for the 2014 football season will give fans in Memorial Stadium greater access to engage in the conversations which are occurring online.”
The app will be ready to use for the 2014 season.
The Internet Protocol Television is a system through which television services are delivered over a packet-switched network such as a LAN or the Internet, instead of being delivered through traditional terrestrial, satellite signal and cable television formats. All channels in the system will be delivered in high-definition. The IPTV service is part of the Cisco system.
Also a part of the ongoing upgrade is the addition of brick on the base section of West Memorial Stadium. The brick has been donated by Endicott Clay Products Co. of Endicott, to match the brick they have provided for other parts of the stadium. With the addition of brick to West Stadium, all sides of Memorial Stadium will feature brick as a cohesive design element.