If you haven't been to College Park in, say, a decade, this is what Cole Field House looks like.
No, really, for the most part, it does. But ... how could that happen, you ask? Simple: Once Comcast Center debuted in 2002, Cole Field House became something of an athletic relic. It is still a stage for sporting battles, as you can see, but now they get only as must-see as inter-fraternity soccer games. Not exactly Maryland-Duke.
But with Maryland Madness moving to Cole Field House for Friday's unofficial season kickoff, the Terps' old home is getting the extreme makeover it deserves (and needs, too, I suppose). Out went the artificial turf. In came the hardwood. Out went the indoor-soccer goals. In came the basketball hoops.
As you look over these photos from the impressive overhaul, courtesy of the university's facilities, operations and events Twitter feed, might I suggest the musical accompaniment of the theme song to the 1990s sitcom "Step By Step." For this truly is a fresh start over, a different hand to play.
No word yet on whether the university has looked into the venue's oft-criticized men's bathroom layout, which one Maryland student magazine lampooned in 2002 as having been arranged so that the urinals are "in the middle of the room, with each row attached to a low-rise tile wall. This creates the somewhat awkward situation of staring at a powerful alumni while you relieve yourself."
(Photos courtesy of sportsystemscorp.com and twitter.com)Copyright © 2014, The Baltimore Sun