Joplin, MO (SNS) – New turf for the football field at Missouri Southern State University’s Fred G. Hughes Stadium is on the way, thanks to a sponsorship by Mercy Hospital Joplin.

A design for the new, state-of-the-art turf has already been approved and will feature Mercy’s logo in two locations on the field. A total of 120 yards in length and 70 in width, the turf is scheduled to be installed following the conclusion of the track and field season in May and will be ready for the team to practice on in preparation for the 2015 season.

“We are very excited to team with Mercy for this project and want to thank them for their generosity,” said Dr. Alan Marble, president of Missouri Southern. “It’s another great addition to the Robert W. Plaster Sports Complex, and we can’t wait for Lions fans to fill the stands again this fall.”

Jared Bruggeman, Missouri Southern’s director of athletics, said the new turf will benefit not only student-athletes, but the university and community as a whole.

“While still MIAA compliant, the current turf is nearing the end of its useful lifetime,” said Bruggeman. “With the amount of use it receives from our sports, as well as outside events like McAuley High School and the Joplin Crusaders, the new turf will be welcomed by all.”

“This is a great addition to a stadium that has seen some tremendous upgrades already, including the final stages of the new end-zone field house, and I can’t wait to see it when it’s finished. We want to thank Mercy for helping to provide a state-of-the-art turf surface for our student-athletes to compete on.”

“We are excited to team with Missouri Southern State University to provide a safe playing surface for their athletes,” said Dr. Russ Kennedy, Mercy Sports Medicine physician. “They are an important part of our community and we are honored to work with them on this project.”