West Salem Goes All-Black Field Turf, With an Unexpected Benefit

Written By:  •  Friday, September 7, 2012

West Salem Oregon High School Titans black field turf - field house


The West Salem High School Titans in Oregon were known for wearing all-black uniforms, so they got an all-black field. Seems a little gimmicky at best and like it would be way more hot at worst. But guess what benefit they really got out of the deal?

How about $150,000. Apparently, Field Turf is black after manufacture and needs a treatment to be made green. Or blue. Or red. Or grey and purple. So, if the company skips the colorization process, it saves the school one hundred fifty large. Quite a savings.

West Salem Oregon High School Titans black field turf - install

Workers install the black field turf at West Salem High

In fact, so much of a savings, it allowed the team to switch to new green uniforms without barely denting the savings. Also avoids other teams complaining about the color match.

While this color is the first of its kind in an outdoor stadium, its not the first black football field. The Nebraska Danger play indoor football on a 50-yard black field.

West Salem Oregon High School Titans black field turf - closeup

Close up of the field on what they call, “The Black Hole”

The look is pretty interesting, though with the rubber added, the field is a little more of a dark charcoal grey than truly black, which is good for depth perception. The yard markers, end zones, and mid-field logo really stand out.

West Salem Oregon High School Titans black field turf - midfield

Midfield green and white logo really stand out on the black


So, what do you think? Neat way to rally the troops, or silly gimmick? Are you the type to wish someone had outlawed this madness before it started, or are you trying to figure out how to get burnt orange into U of Texas stadium? Carbon Fiber and metallic for Autzen Stadium? Stupid chicken-wire and cream to match the helmets at Georgia Tech?

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JR Francis

JR Francis is an actor, writer, director, graphic designer, UX guru, father, comedian, and craft beer snob. You can reach him at jrfrancis@sportslogos.net or on Twitter @JRFrancisSLN*One of several full-time uniform reporters this site has including its founder, Chris Creamer, who started his site in 1997