Southfield construction company helped renovate Rose Bowl - KMSP-TV

Southfield construction company, Spartan grads helped renovate Rose Bowl stadium

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(WJBK) -

Michigan State fans lucky enough to get tickets are making travel plans right now to head to the Rose Bowl.

The CEO of the Southfield construction company Barton Malow will be among those in the stadium, with a unique perspective. His company helped renovate the iconic stadium.

VIDEO: Click on the video player above to watch the story from Fox 2's Robin Schwartz, or read it below
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For the last three years a major renovation, upgrade and beautification process has been underway to make the Rose Bowl shine. We now know Michigan State will we there for the upcoming 100th anniversary game, but you may not have known Southfield company Barton Malow handled the construction project along with another firm in California.

"With Michigan State being there, being fortunate to be involved in the 100th anniversary upgrade of the stadium and being involved in numerous committees at the university, this is a unique time and a great time to be a Spartan," Ben Maibach, the CEO of Barton Malow says. He is a proud 1969 graduate. His office makes it obvious from the basketball signed by Tom Izzo, to the football helmet autographed by Mark Dantonio.

"Go green, go white!" he laughs.

Shawn Holliser, another Spartan, was the project manager. He actually moved to California for a few years as the company upgraded utilities, concessions, suites, restaurants, and the press box as part of the $160 million project.

"The Rose Bowl's extremely iconic. It's just a one of a kind place to go see a football game. So everyone that hasn't been out there, it will take your breath away and it's extremely exciting to see. Green and white will be all over the field," says Holliser.

In all, about 30 Michigan State grads work for the company, including Alexis here, and we're told at least 16 will be in the crowd New Year's Day. The CEO will be there, along with his wife, whom he met in college. Sean has plans to be there, too.

"Do you get special seats?"

Holliser answers, "No, I do not get special seats. Nope, I actually have my seats through Michigan State as a season ticket holder ... but we are, obviously, trying to get as many as possible,"

He's hoping it's a lucky sign that a team led by Spartans set the stage for the big game where their alma mater will soon take the field.

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