But we have learned that the problem is far worse than originally reported, that after the state Department of Environmental Protection tested the site last week, the lead content far exceeds the maximum allowed by federal regulations and that the site will require an extensive and thorough land remediation before it would even be considered to be refurbished.
The Jersey City Board of Education, which now currently owns the facility, said that the board had set aside some funding to repair the field. A spokesman said that there was about $250,000 targeted for the repairs, plus other funding sources like the National Football League and the city of Jersey City.
Plus, the artificial turf surface at Caven Point was approaching its 15th birthday, which is usually the lifespan for such surfaces.
However, with the latest round of testing determining that a simple resurfacing would not suffice - and an estimated $2.5 million price tag placed on the total overhaul - it's almost impossible to believe that the Jersey City Board of Education can foot such a bill, considering that the board has been streamlining everything in its budget from goods and services to pre-game meals and summer camps.
So what happens?
It more than likely means that the facility remains closed for the foreseeable future - and quite possibly, forever.
One thing is for certain: There is no way possible that the facility's soil can undergo an extensive remediation and then, the subsequent installation of a new playing surface, more than likely the safer FieldTurf variety, by the time that the start of football season rolls around in September.
No matter how much a positive spin that the Board of Education officials can place on it, there's simply not enough time to get that kind of a job done - and there aren't enough funding sources to fit the estimated $2.5 million bill.
So officials met last week to determine the next course of action and possibly make contingency plans to find alternative sites to play football in the fall.
Six schools call Cochrane Stadium home for football. If Hudson Catholic closes, then there would only be five - namely St. Peter's Prep and the four Jersey City public schools. It was not immediately known whether St. Anthony, which will field a varsity program for the first time in 2008, was also planning on playing football at Cochrane.
But it will mean a huge scramble to find suitable sites in the fall - the problem is that there aren't many suitable football venues in the area. Suitable sites mean locations with enough bleachers, parking, lights, a press box, etc.
In Jersey City, the only other location that could handle a football game would be New Jersey City University's Gerrity Field, which has not had to host a football game since the school dropped football six years ago.
But Gerrity Field is a grass surface and it doesn't have lights. But it's the sole legitimate facility in Jersey City right now. The new FieldTurf facility inside Lincoln Park has lights, but no parking, bleachers, or press box. St. Peter's Prep's field is not long enough.
The Jersey City schools could also turn to their neighbors, like Bruins Stadium in North Bergen, Midtown Athletic Complex (Monastery Field) in Union City, the new Memorial High School complex (which will host football this year), and even Kane Stadium in Secaucus. Bayonne's Don Ahern Veterans Stadium is a grass field.
Needless to say, the situation is far more dire than what was perceived and presented last week and is a major cause for concern come time for football season...
Speaking of the closure of Cochrane Stadium, the HCIAA has decided on a location for the upcoming baseball and softball championships. The games will now be played at New Jersey City University's complex near Society Hill on Route 440. The baseball championships will be played on Saturday and the softball title games will be played Sunday...
The city of Hoboken lost a true giant last week with the passing of Michael "Moe" Mulvaney, who was a longtime athletic coach for several different youth programs over the last two decades.
Despite having lost both of his legs at an early age, Moe was constantly out there with the kids, coaching, coddling, and certainly inspiring. He was the true professional when it came to being a volunteer coach and was always an upbeat positive role model for the kids of the Mile Square City.
There's no question that Moe will be sorely missed, especially in this corner. Dedication like the kind that Moe Mulvaney had is not easy to find these days. He was one of a kind. Rest in peace, Moe...
St. Anthony senior Tyshawn Taylor has decided to head to the University of Kansas. He considers himself lucky.
"How many other kids go from a national championship high school team to a national championship basketball team?" Taylor told ESPN.com.
Taylor chose Kansas this time after first signing a national letter of intent with Marquette, only to ask for his release from the commitment to Marquette when former Golden Eagle coach Tom Crean left Milwaukee for the University of Indiana...
Speaking about former St. Anthony products, Guttenberg's Miles Beatty received a bit of bad news when he was informed by George Washington University head coach Karl Hobbs that his scholarship was not being renewed.
Beatty's season started out well for the Colonials, including leading the team in scoring in a loss to UCLA at Pauley Pavilion. But Beatty ended up in Hobbs' doghouse and never recovered, playing in only 14 games as a freshman. Now, Beatty will have to pick up his career elsewhere...
Former St. Peter's Prep standout linebacker Pat Farrell won his third straight New Jersey state Golden Gloves boxing championship in the heavyweight novice class. Farrell defeated Leon Johnson of the Bergen PAL in the title bout. Farrell will now attempt a professional career...
Hoboken High School grid standouts Bernardo Nunez and Isaac Holmes have been nominated for the U.S. Army High School All-American game, which will be played in January 2009. If either Nunez or Holmes is selected, it will mark a third straight year that a Hudson County grid product has been selected to play in an All-American game, joining former Hoboken teammate Duval Kamara (2007) and St. Peter's Prep's Will Hill (2008)...
Congrats to the North Bergen High School track and field team, which captured the North Hudson championship for the first time in more than 20 years. The Bruins outdistanced both Memorial and Secaucus by more than 40 points. Leading the way for the Bruins was Robert Spezzacatena, who won four individual events, the 100-meter dash, the 800-meter run, the long jump, and the high jump.
Joe Madera won two individual events (the 200 and 400) and ran the anchor leg on the winning mile relay team. Tom Guaschino won the javelin and Danny Rondon won the 3,200-meter run for the Bruins. - Jim Hague