RALEIGH, N.C. — North Carolina State University's athletics department is facing a tougher opponent than anything it has faced in the ACC – the drought.
To deal with that, the Wolfpack is considering digging six wells to provide water for fields ranging from Carter-Finley Stadium to the new softball facility that opens Wednesday.
Ray Brincefield, N.C. State's assistant athletics director for facilities, said the school has not been using city water from its irrigation system since the city went to Stage 2 restrictions on Oct. 18.
Instead, the school trucks in water from Lake Raleigh on the Centennial Campus to water 33 acres of athletics fields.
That’s time-consuming and expensive, however – and it could drain the lake.
So, Brincefield and school officials are now looking at sinking six wells instead.
“Do we tanker truck (water in) all year? … That’s going to be a headache,” Brincefield said. “Or do we start looking into wells?”
The school would want the wells in place by May 1, which is the start of the growing season for Bermuda grass.
Brincefield wants to make sure the grass continues to flourish.
“More than anything, it’s a safety thing when you put high-profile athletes in danger,” he said. “Secondly, it’s protecting the investment [in the grass]. "
“We’re probably leaning toward well water," he added. "And also from a budgetary standpoint, as we are all smart enough to realize, when we get out of these restrictions, the price of water from the city is going to increase.”