Ex-NFL groundskeeper George Toma – Super Bowl LVII area was overwatered
George Toma, the longtime groundskeeper who ready after which suggested the preparation of each Super Bowl area, believes the problems that plagued the sector at Super Bowl LVII at State Farm Stadium in Glendale, Arizona, might have been prevented.
The 94-year-old instructed ESPN that he believes the sector was overwatered within the days main as much as the sport. In keeping with Toma, who has been nicknamed The Sodfather, the sector was watered the Wednesday morning earlier than the sport and rolled into the stadium on the moveable tray that housed the grass area for the final time earlier than kickoff 4 days later.
Toma contended that the sector ought to’ve been watered within the morning and stored exterior to dry earlier than being rolled in.
“So, what he does,” Toma mentioned, referring to Ed Mangan, the NFL area director who was in command of the Super Bowl area and labored below Toma for years, “he waters the hell out of it and puts it right into the stadium and that’s it. Never sees sunlight again. He can’t do that.”
A tarp was laid over the sector to guard it from the rehearsals for the pregame, halftime and postgame reveals, Toma mentioned, and that led to the sector emitting an odor. Toma mentioned he was instructed through the week that the sector was beginning to decay and decay.
“It had a rotten smell,” he mentioned.
Toma additionally alleged that Mangan didn’t sand the sector sufficient.
“He sanded it two weeks too late,” Toma mentioned. “He had only one sanding. He should have had two or three sandings, but he didn’t do s—. And that was it. And not only that, he didn’t take care of it. He wouldn’t listen to anybody.”
Toma mentioned he isn’t blaming rye grass for the sector’s slickness, including that he used rye grass for 27 Super Bowls.
In an announcement the day after the Super Bowl, the NFL mentioned: “The State Farm Stadium field surface met the required standards for the maintenance of natural surfaces, as per NFL policy. The natural grass surface was tested throughout Super Bowl week and was in compliance with all mandatory NFL practices.”
Super Bowl LVII was Toma’s final. He retired after greater than 80 years within the groundskeeping enterprise. “I can’t take it anymore,” mentioned Toma, who mentioned he hasn’t been happy with how the NFL responded to area points at Super Bowl websites prior to now.
“Me and the league are finished,” Toma mentioned. “They can’t tell me what to do anymore. We’re done.”