Jan 16, 2013, 3:17 PM EST
I believe it was the Nostradamus who predicted that one day, stadium video screens would be as large as the football fields themselves. Of course everyone laughed at him (just look at that beard), but who’s laughing now? Huh? WHO’S LAUGHING NOW? (maniacal laughter).
UNLV has entered the stadium video screen arms race in a big way, having announced plans to erect a 100-yard-long monster video monitor as part of its new $800 million UNLV Now stadium project. That’s not 100 feet — which would still be pretty huge. That’s 100 yards. Or, 300 feet (math!), which would make it 100 feet longer than the current largest high-definition stadium video screen in the U.S.: the one at Charlotte Motor Speedway.
It wasn’t that long ago that Jerry Jones installed a 180-foot-by-72-foot video screen at Cowboys Stadium, declaring it the longest high-def screen in the nation. But incredibly, the Cowboys Stadium screen would be dropped to No. 4 if and when the UNLV screen is complete. The list would then go:
1. UNLV Now, Las Vegas (300 feet).
2. Reliant Stadium, Houston (277).
3. Charlotte Motor Speedway, NC (200).
4. Cowboys Stadium, Dallas (180).
As far as square footage, the complete dimensions of the UNLV screen were not mentioned. Charlotte Motor Speedway is currently the largest at 16,000 square feet. As for the world record in screen length, there’s a horse race track video screen in Dubai that’s 353 feet long.
Now, UNLV only averages about 14,000 fans per game in their current stadium. The new one would seat 60,000. But it would be used for more than UNLV football: they’re going to try and attract a new bowl game, and then there’s the Mountain West Conference football championship game, a possible NFL exhibition game, UFC International Fight Week, and other “mega events”.
So the next step, I guess, is to make the video board larger than the actual football field. Then, remove the field entirely, and play the game at a secret, secure location, and just have the video board in the stadium with the fans. The complete interactive experience, without interacting with the teams.
Meanwhile in home television screen news, the new largest-screen champ has just been produced by Austrian firm C SEED Entertainment Systems — checking in at 201 inches wide. Yep, that’s 16.7 feet, and I figure I can fit that in my living room if I remove a wall. Could you imagine watching Modern Family on a 17-foot-wide TV? Price: about $650,000. Or, four easy payments of $162,200 on QVC.
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