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Death Valley to be converted to hill-style stadium

Katie Bradham
Clemson fans will have to stand on a hill across the entirety of Death Valley.

Out of all the rites of passage that a Clemson student goes through, none is more infamous than experiencing a football game on Memorial Stadium’s hill. Sliding stomach-first when the rope finally drops, fighting for space on the only two flat sections, dripping with sweat that probably isn’t yours and feeling your calves cramp from standing at a 45-degree angle for four hours is worth it just for a chance to see the Tigers play.

Next season, Clemson Athletics is working to make these core memories a reality for Tiger fans everywhere by converting all bleachers into hill-style seating.

Currently, Death Valley is confined to holding only 81,500 fans, with students forced to give up their firstborn children to even have a chance at receiving a student ticket. However, not having spectators confined to assigned seats will greatly increase the stadium’s maximum capacity.

“Heck, if everything was a hill, I bet we could fit a million people up in here,” Clemson athletic director Graham Nugget said. “We could probably even give a ticket to every student. No other school does that. We wouldn’t need those wristbands anymore.”

Last spring, Clemson announced plans to add handrails and other safety measures to The Hill, sparking outrage from many fans. The announcement of the new all-hill Memorial Stadium, however, came as a huge relief across the Upstate.

“I almost had a heart attack last year when I heard they were gonna try to take away The Hill,” said Joe from Pickens, a Clemson fan for over 50 years. “Back in my day, we had to paddle across Lake Hartwell against the wind both ways to watch Clemson football. I’m glad they finally came to their senses and are making the whole thing a hill. Everyone just needs to toughen up.”

While this new style of seating will take away seats from big-shot IPTAY donors, they can still expect to receive benefits according to the level of their contributions.

“People who donate less than $5,000 will get little handheld fans,” an anonymous IPTAY representative said. “$15,000 or less gets you an umbrella, and our most generous donors can enjoy a personal awning with a complimentary ice cream bar in the summer and a coffee bar in the winter.”

Originally, the new hills were to be made of artificial turf, using turfgrass for the football field only. However, the wild popularity of the current hill and recommendations from Clemson faculty have shifted the plan to now implement real grass.

“Who doesn’t love standing in the mud during a rainy game? I know my students sure do,” said Ricky-Bobby Jones, landscape management professor. “Plus, using the real grass would be a great project for them. If they can keep the grass alive for an entire season, they’ll get an A for the semester.”

When asked for his opinion on the upcoming changes to Death Valley, head football coach Sabo Dwinney was — true to form — all in.

“I mean, I think it’s great,” Dwinney said. “Think of all the NIL deals we can get for our players with the turf companies. I called Nick Saban to ask what he thought about it, and he thinks it’ll be a winner.”

This article is satire as part of The Tiger’s April Fool’s edition, The Kitten. This story was written for comedic purposes and has no verifiable truth to it.

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Juliana Coates
Juliana Coates, News Editor
Katie Bradham
Katie Bradham, Senior Videographer
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