The Penn State beat writer for The Athletic (she hasn’t lost her job, yet) wrote an interesting piece on the logistics of a college football road trip, from hotels to airports to setting up at the stadium. This is focused on PSU’s trip to Auburn this weekend. Some of our posters are offended when I post a link to paywall stories, so I won’t, but it’s there if anybody wants to look.
Anyway, there are two tidbits in there of Hog interest; one she mentions, one she doesn’t.
First of all, Penn State has rented air-conditioned benches to put on their sideline at Jordan-Hare from a company in Florida. Where were those benches last weekend? At Reynolds Razorback Stadium; the Poultry rented them for our day game with their bench on the east sideline, which is also the case for Penn State Saturday. (I knew there were heated benches for winter use; I didn’t know they also came with AC). The benches were then shipped from Fayetteville to Auburn, where they will remain for two weeks because Missouri is also going to use them next weekend.
Second, Penn State must change its flight plans because the Montgomery airport, where visiting teams at Auburn usually fly, is undergoing renovations that will last all fall and their main runway is temporarily shortened. That affects everyone else flying in to play the Bagmen this year, including us. As of this writing, Penn State had not solved the problem, but the options are to fly into Columbus, Georgia, or land at an air force base near Montgomery.
I didn’t know there were heated or AC’d benches. Seems like those would be a good permanent investment. September games, especially in the early afternoon, can be miserably hot. November games can be awfully cold, especially at night.
I assume the heating & cooling isn’t limited to the seat. Too be effective, it’d have to apply to larger parts of the body. I’d think they’d have to be somewhat enclosed, but I have never noticed them or known of their existence.
Dunno…perhaps the HOME teams HAVE made such an investment. But there’s no reason to shell out those $$ for the opponent. I suspect that is where the market is.
The story related above is all about road teams. Even if they owned their own climate controlled benches, the logistics of getting them around the country probably makes it cheaper to rent them as they are.
Maxwell is the AFB in Montgomery. They do officer training there. My wife has been there twice, once when she joined the air force for her residency and then last year for 3 weeks when she became certified to treat chopper pilots. My son was also born in Montgomery but I try to forget that. I don’t know if they allow any civilian craft to land there. They would probably have to go to Columbus, GA.
The story quoted Auburn’s operations manager, who is helping PSU with this, as saying they could possibly swing landing the Lions at Maxwell. Apparently part of the problem is that the Montgomery airport also has military use (Air National Guard I presume) and the runways need to be redone for military traffic. Thus it’s kinda the Pentagon’s fault.
I’ve seen heated benches used in the NFL for a decade or more in December and January. There are usually pipes protruding out the top of the bench where players can hang their helmets to keep the inside warm. Photo is of one in use (where else?) in Green Bay.
Sometimes the heated benches have recesses, where a player can have hot air blowing on his feet. Such as these benches at Soldier Field.