How SoFi Stadium’s Turf Impacts the 2023 National Championship
Brandon Sloter/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images. Pictured: SoFi Stadium.
SoFi Stadium broke ground in 2016 and opened in September 2020. The state-of-the-art facility houses the Los Angeles Rams and Los Angeles Chargers while also playing host to the Jimmy Kimmel LA Bowl over the past two bowl seasons.
The surface is artificial Matrix Turf.
As it pertains to our national title participants, Georgia has no recent history playing on the Matrix Turf. The Bulldogs play all home games in Sanford Stadium with Bermuda grass installed.
Mercedes-Benz Stadium has been a pseudo home game for Georgia, hosting its opening game with Oregon, the SEC Championship and the Peach Bowl. FieldTurf was installed at Mercedez-Benz Stadium once it opened in 2017.
If there’s an advantage in familiar field conditions, it would fall on TCU. The Horned Frogs played at Baylor’s McLane Stadium and AT&T Stadium for the Big 12 Championship, and both locations feature Matrix Turf similar to SoFi Stadium.
Interestingly enough, both the Baylor and Big 12 Championship games fell just a point short of the closing total.
To go a step further, Sonny Dykes’ home field at Cal — California Memorial Stadium — featured Matrix Turf. Dykes has had so much recent and long-term experience on the surface that he would be able to do sales commercials for Matrix Turf.
There have been two editions of the LA Bowl in this venue. Both games landed below 40 points in scoring, as Utah State and Oregon State combined for 37 points in 2021, while Washington State and Fresno State tallied just 35 points in this year's edition.
Per Bet Labs, SoFi Stadium is 29-21 to the under in NFL games since inception.