In a press conference Wednesday, the team announced that Marlins Park will play host to its first college football game in three years next November 23. Florida International will host the University of Miami. The contest will mark the first football game at the stadium since December 2016, the last of the ill-fated Miami Beach Bowls.
College football is coming back this year for a Dade County matchup, FIU vs. UM! pic.twitter.com/9J2wDlW18f— Marlins Park (@MarlinsPark) January 16, 2019
Marlins president of business operations Chip Bowers declared the Park “open for business again” and later added that he and the Marlins brass “are excited that FIU is the first team that’s going to be able to call this a home facility for them. We’d love to have more annual events.” FIU, at least, is expecting a capacity crowd.
Marlins Park is already a piece of football history
Football played on the grounds has historic roots. Marlins Park is the site of the former Orange Bowl, Miami’s former home field. It was also the scene of a famous brawl on Oct. 14, 2006 between the two teams set to play this November.
Perhaps part of the motivation to have football back at Marlins Park there was a desire not to let the last game played on the site be the 2016 Miami Beach Bowl. That contest featured two not-powerhouses, the Tulsa Golden Hurricane and the Central Michigan Chippewas and was decided 55-10 in favor of Tulsa in front of an almost entirely empty stadium.
Seriously though, Bowers’ desires to make the stadium a year-round facility can only serve to keep the Marlins in the public eye and above all bring in added revenue. Fans should be rooting for anything that gets people in the doors as it directly helps accelerate the rebuild.