Michigan Stadium is now officially out of the dark ages, as installation of a permanent lighting system was completed this week. The lights were tested on Thursday evening, as well as during Saturday's football game versus Wisconsin, completing the $1.8 million project ahead of schedule.â†µ
"It took us 130 years to get to this point," [Michigan athletic director David] Brandon said Thursday, clearly pleased. "This is an historic day in Michigan football. This is a major step forward for us."â†µ
What Brandon likes most about the lights is how they've been integrated into the stadium renovations.â†µ
"They're very cool," Brandon said. "It's a really clean band of lights running horizontally, as opposed to big, ugly poles."â†µ
The lights were scheduled to be fully installed before "The Big Chill at the Big House" on December 11. But the hockey game between Michigan and Michigan State will still be the first true test of the lighting system. Next season will feature Michigan Stadium's first football game, between the Wolverines and Notre Dame, played at night.â†µ
The Big House Blog has photos from the test in an empty stadium. And this video of UFC fighter Forrest Griffin's visit to the Michigan football program also has a brief glimpse of the field with the lights on.