For the first time since the 1981 season, the Minnesota Vikings are set to make their home stadium in the frigid outdoor temperatures when they play the 2014 and 2015 seasons at the University of Minnesota's TCF Bank Stadium.
According to Patrick Condon of the Associated Press (via the Minneapolis Star-Tribune), the team and city reached an agreement to play at the new stadium while their new field gets built in anticipation of opening for the 2016 season.
Vikings vice president Lester Bagley said Friday that the team plans to play at the University of Minnesota's TCF Bank Stadium during the 2014 and 2015 seasons, while the team's new stadium gets built at the Metrodome site in downtown Minneapolis.
The Vikings have played in the Hubert H. Humphrey Metrodome since the 1982 season, but it became clear that significant upgrades were needed after the roof caved in during a winter storm in December 2010.
Even before that incident, the Vikings' ownership has been fighting the city to get a new stadium built. It took years to get through, but in May 2012 the new $975 million stadium was approved with the team and city nearly splitting the bill.
After the roof incident in 2010, the Vikings played one game at TCF Bank Stadium against the Chicago Bears. The AP report says that the stadium is just about 10 minutes away from the Metrodome, so there won't be a lot of changes as far as the travel schedule is concerned.
It also states that the Metrodome is due to be torn down in February 2014 and the new stadium built in its place is expected to be open on July 1, 2016.
The last NFL team to share a stadium with a college team was the Chicago Bears, who played at the University of Illinois while Solider Field was undergoing renovations.