Liberty University stadium construction winding down, groundskeeper of 30 years reflects on the transformation

LYNCHBURG, Va. (WDBJ7)-- Construction is winding down at Liberty University's Williams Stadium. The 40 million dollar project will be ready just in time for the season's inaugural FBS game this Saturday.

With every bleacher added and change made, one Liberty University groundskeeper has seen it all unfold over his shoulder.

"Lots of people, lots of dust, lots of noise,” said Marq Brandon, Horticulture Supervisor.

But for Brandon, the Williams Stadium expansion is just another chapter in a 30 year book.

"19 years old….I was hard headed. I was a rebel,” said Brandon.

He started in the grounds department in 1987. He was fresh out of the military and going through some tough times.

"When I first started here, I was in a gang….that lifestyle---it nearly killed me,” said Brandon. “So when I first came here, I really thought this was a joke."

A lot has changed in 30 years. As time marched on, Liberty got a face lift. Buildings were torn down and built up. With every brick laid, Brandon saw growth that mirrored his own.

"Hope…it just gave me hope,” said Brandon.

The field when he started had just a few rows of bleachers. Games were played off campus because of the size.

He now looks out at the expanded stadium, that fits 25,000 people, with amazement.

"Awe struck,” said Brandon.

When fans fill Williams stadium Saturday night, it won't just mark the transformation of a school. But the transformation of one groundskeeper too.

"It makes me think about where we came from. And it makes me think about the bumps in the road,” said Brandon. “It's amazing."

The stadium will be ready for Saturday’s game. The press box is still under construction. It’s expected to be complete by their fourth home game of the year.