While there still is no official confirmation that the Monday night game against the Bears has been moved to the University of Minnesota, many of the major media outlets here are making that conclusion. For example, Fox Sports North had this to say on their website:
No official word has been issued yet, but by the looks of things at TCF Bank Stadium Tuesday morning, it sure seems likely that the Vikings-Bears game will be moved from the deflated Metrodome to the home of the Minnesota Golden Gophers on Monday, Dec. 20.
Officials at the University of Minnesota told the Vikings on Sunday that it would need at least four days to prepare the stadium to host another game. "The Bank" had been shut down for winter after the Gophers' season finale against Iowa on Nov. 27.
Reporters are also putting out the news on Twitter. From Esme Murphy of WCCO 4 News:
Mn. Vikings: Monday's game will be played in Mn., TCF is the back up. U plowing TCF right now
However, as of 3:30PM CST, StarTribune beat writer Judd Zulgad was not confirming anything, noting on Twitter:
The Vikings issued a statement to say they are working with U of M in case they can't play at the Metrodome. Nothing is decided.
KFAN1130 AM, a local radio station was much more decisive in one of their tweets:
The #Metrodome will not be ready for Mon night. #Vikings continue to work with U of M on possibility of holding game at TCF Bank Stadium.
That certainly makes it sound like the Vikings are convinced the Dome will not be ready, and they have the U pulling all the stops to get TCF Bank Stadium ready to go. It seems hard to believe that the U would go through all of the trouble if the Vikings were planning to move the game outside the state again.
With the 50th anniversary celebration set for this game, the Vikings will want to keep it local, and TCF Bank Stadium gives them the best chance to do so. Still, questions remain, one of the big ones being alcohol sales. The University does not allow alcohol sales except in specific areas of the stadium. Would those rules apply to the Vikings?
More on this as it happens.