Jay-Z and Beyoncé brought their "On the Run II" tour to Williams-Brice Stadium in Columbia, S.C., last Tuesday and left the home of the University of South Carolina Gamecocks looking like it had been overrun.
A hard-plastic field cover was laid over the football field to support staging and seating (total attendance exceeded 40,000), but it killed the natural grass underneath, requiring a complete re-sodding of the surface over the weekend.
"We would not have done this if we believed there was a safety issue," said Clark Cox, the university's assistant athletic director in charge of turf and landscaping services, according to an Associated Press report. "My job and our entire ground staff's job, our No. 1 priority in everything we do, is safety and welfare of our student-athletes."
In all, 90,000 square feet of Bermuda sod was trucked in from Georgia at a cost of $150,000 to $200,000, according to figures reported by The Sporting News. Concert promoters were expected to cover the replacement, and the university made money on the concert.
The field is expected to be rolled and lined today and perfectly playable when the Gamecocks host Coastal Carolina on Saturday.
“The idea with this sod is you can literally play on it right away,” Cox told The Post and Courier of Charleston on Saturday. “We could play a football game on it this afternoon if we wanted to.”