Since the season ended, you may have read a blurb or three about how Reliant Stadium was getting new video boards before the 2013 season began. You also probably read that the new video boards were going to be big. What you may not have read, however, is that the new video boards at Reliant Stadium (which will be unveiled to the public for the first time when fans arrive at Reliant for Saturday night's Texans-Dolphins tilt) will be the longest in the world. David Barron has the details in this story. Some of the more interesting points:
Coming in the wake of recent video upgrades at Minute Maid Park and Toyota Center, Reliant's new boards stretch 277.17 feet (92.4 yards, almost the length of a football field) by 52.49 feet above each end zone. Each covers 14,549 square feet with 5.28 million pixels of high-definition resolution.
There will be sufficient room for live action, side-by-side replays, graphics, advertising and statistics and plenty of space to turn the tiny J.J. Watt whom fans see from the upper deck into a frothing-at-the-mouth, larger-than-life J.J. Watt imploring them to make noise when it's third-and-1.
Size comparisons aside, however, the new Reliant boards will represent a massive improvement. The original boards were standard-definition, and because of the advertising strip that ran over the video portion, the old video display measured just 96 feet by 27 feet.
Pending completion of the Jacksonville boards next year, Houston now boasts the largest stadium board in terms of square footage at Reliant, the fourth-largest board in Major League Baseball (Minute Maid Park's "El Grande" is 124 feet by 53 feet), the largest in the NBA with the center-hung boards at Toyota Center (56 feet by 25 feet) and what is believed to be the largest board at a high school stadium, the 50.5-by-18.5-foot board at Humble's Turner Stadium.
As cool as all of this sounds, it remains to be seen whether it will have any effect on getting fans to choose to attend games at the stadium instead of opting to watch from the (much, much less expensive) comfort of their couches. Methinks ticket and concession prices, not the amazing definition and size of the video boards, will determine whether there's any sea change in that arena.