Upcoming renovations to Wrigley Field will make it possible to host football once again at the historic venue, as several college teams look at placing games at the home of the Chicago Cubs.
There’s a proud tradition of pro football at Wrigley Field — the Chicago Bears have played more games at Wrigley Field than at Soldier Field, going back to the days when the Bears played on the north side and the Chicago Cardinals played on the south side, at Comiskey Park — and the current owners of the Cubs want to bring back some of that pigskin magic. The first effort — a Northwestern/Illinois bash — turned into a circus when ballpark and Big Ten officials realize a full-sized gridiron couldn’t be laid out in the current ballpark configuration, leading to an odd match with both teams offensively driving down toward one end zone.
Recent changes to Wrigley Field will add a row of seats behind home plate; they’ll also add a removable 12-foot section down the third-base line, providing enough room for a full-length football field. That opens the door for lots more football at Wrigley Field in 2013 and beyond. The Ricketts family hails from Omaha, so it’s no surprise they’ve already broached the topic of Wrigley Field football with Nebraska officials; other colleges that may look at a Wrigley Field game would be Northwestern, Illinois and Notre Dame. Another cool idea: bringing the Chicago Bears back for what would probably be an exhibition game. Throw in the Arizona Cardinals, and you’ve got the ultimate throwback game in a throwback venue.
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