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49ers vs. Lions: Can You Hear Me Now?

The San Francisco 49ers head to Ford Field this Sunday to face the Detroit Lions in a battle of first place teams. The Lions are coming off a Monday Night Football home game against the Chicago Bears during which Ford Field was absolutely rocking. The Lions are off to their best start in years and fans are pumped about it. They sold out this weekend's game, and I suspect it will be just a little bit noisy at game time.

The 49ers have factored in the noise in their preparations for Sunday's game. The Bears had 14 penalties with nine of them being false starts. Given the occasional proclivities of the 49ers offensive line, the more practice in loud noise, the better. Enter Jim Harbaugh's "guy" Kevin Korecky.

Apparently the team was rocking out a new sound system during practice yesterday. According to Harbaugh (part of his transcript from yesterday after the jump), the team got some help from his electronics wiz from Stanford, Kevin Korecky and installed an improved sound system and speakers.

Alex Smith also chatted about the noise and proclaimed the Seahawks stadium as the loudest stadium in which he has ever played. Smith's one game in Detroit came week ten of the 2006 season when the Lions were 2-6 and en route to a 3-13 season. It's safe to say things were not as loud then as they are going to be this Sunday.

How do you see the 49ers handling the noise? I've got to imagine we'll see some false starts. Working on hand signals and silent counts is useful, but there's something just a little bit different when the adrenaline is flowing and you've got a crowd screaming at you. Should be an interesting experiene.

Head Coach Jim Harbaugh
Press Conference - October 12, 2011
San Francisco 49ers

Listen to Audio I Media Center

Are you guys staking a concert, a rock concert out there (on the practice fields)?

"We've upgraded our sound system."

Is that after watching the Bears game the other night?

"No, we've been trying to get that done for about eight weeks, so we finally got it done."

So you want a louder practice environment?

"We wanted better speakers and a louder music system."

What was the hold up? Why eight weeks?

"It would just frustrate me to go into that, so I'm not going to go into that. We got it done."

Where do you find speakers that big?

"We got those over at Stanford."

Did you have to put notes on the neighbors' doors to warn them of this?

"Not that I'm aware of, no. We play it maybe 15 practices a year really, when it's all said and done."

Did you go get them?

"I knew where to get them. Kevin Korecky, my guy over at Stanford. He's a whiz at electronics."

He delivered them so you didn't have to pick them up?

"Yeah, Kevin brought them out."

So the purpose for getting them obviously is to get them ready for the crowd noise in Detroit. That really showed with the problems the Bears had there. Is that a big emphasis this week obviously, silent count and getting everything in gear with that?

"Yes, you've got to be ready to be able to play without being able to talk and verbally communicate."

QB Alex Smith
Press Conference - October 12, 2011
San Francisco 49ers

Listen to Audio I Media Center

What's the loudest game you've ever played in?

"Hands down Seattle is the loudest stadium I've ever played in. I think indoor or out, especially being a division game it just doesn't compare really with anything else, so."

Your coach is bringing in some heavy-duty speakers over there. Do you think that the speakers you guys have used in the past have been adequate to prepare you for Seattle and other places?

"Yeah, I'm sure it'll intensify it I guess if they are that much louder. I don't know. Yeah, I think the speakers in the past have been fine. When it comes to noise, it's attention to detail. It helps to practice with it all week just to get the reps, and especially with the guys up front getting off. But really it's kind of the attention to detail all week-emphasizing it, being on top of it."

Was it disconcerting to you at all to watch the game and see how many times Chicago's offensive line false started, or do you think that's them that's not us?

"Yeah, this isn't the first stadium to have noise and the first team to be going against it. I mean how many indoor stadiums are there across the league. How many loud outdoor stadiums are there out there. Teams deal with it all the time. It was a division game. It was Monday Night Football, obviously it's going to be loud. If they went in there thinking it wasn't going to be, obviously I think it showed. You need to prepare for it. There's no guessing about it. It's going to be loud. It's going to be noisy."