In the past 20 years, no college football coach in the United States has had a higher winning percentage than George Rush, the head coach at City College of San Francisco.
From 1990 through the start of the 2010 season, Coach Rush’s teams had played 246 games and won 222—an astounding .902 winning percentage.
During those two decades, the football powerhouse also racked up 18 conference championships and six national championships, adding to the two the college had won previously. And in 2010, the team landed its 19th conference championship. But during the 2009 season, Rush realized that the Rams’ current Field Turf football field needed to be replaced.
“We had used our previous artificial turf football field for eight seasons and the fiber was worn down,” Rush says. “The rubber infill was at the surface, so it looked like there were spots of black with green in between. The sand in the field had migrated to the subsurface and formed almost a crust, and the white field markings had faded because of the black coming to the surface. It was just worn.”
So, the Rams were practicing and playing on a hard, matted surface that would no longer drain properly, and infill migration was a major problem. After practices, Rush says, he would often find his shoes filled with rubber pellets, indicating that the field was no longer retaining its performance and safety characteristics. So, when school officials decided to replace the old turf, a primary concern was that the new artificial turf field would be durable enough to deliver years of high-quality use.
“We wanted to make sure that we had a field that had the latest innovations, the most cutting-edge surface, and that we were dealing with a company with a reputation for excellence in sports surfaces,” Rush says. “We’re playing at the highest level of community college football, and we needed a field that would reflect our quality of play.”
Rush began researching the school’s options. Given his interest in new turf technology, Mondo’s products quickly caught his eye. Rush soon zeroed in on a trio of Mondo innovations: The revolutionary 3NX artificial turf fibers; Mondo’s unique Ecofill infill; and the company’s new Thermo¬bonded backing. The new technology convinced him that Mondo was the right choice.
CCSF’s Mondo field was installed in the fall of 2010—the first 3NX Ecofill® Thermo¬bonded field in North America.
The field was an immediate hit with the school’s student-athletes. The football players were especially impressed with the footing on the new surface. “To a man, they said that it felt like there was real dirt underneath, not rubber,” Rush says. “And unlike with our old field, the infill doesn’t migrate; it doesn’t spray.”
Players also realized that the field was noticeably faster than their previous artificial turf field. “We wanted a fast field, and the Mondo field is very, very fast. This is the Lamborghini of fields. It is the best,” Rush says.
In addition, Rush says the Mondo field has been a major upgrade in aesthetics over the previous field. The quality of the field markings, logos and end zones reflect the superior performance of CCSF’s football teams, and Mondo’s two-toned 3NX fibers make the field look more like natural grass than other artificial turf fields. “Our players love how it looks,” he says, “and they love playing on the new field.”