In the early-to-middle part of last decade, Texas Tech had one of the most underrated homefield advantages in college football. After the Red Raiders went 11-2 in 2008, the university expanded the stadium. Then the winning started to slip. Texas Tech dropped to 9-4 in 2009, 8-5 in 2010 and 5-7 in 2011 before rebounding to 8-5 again this fall.
Along the way, Texas Tech lost a bit of its home field advantage, which was once called a "pit of snakes" by ABC's Brad Nessler.
Athletic director Kirby Hocutt has set out to change that.
“It’s time to return the homefield advantage that was once recognized as the most dominant in all of college football back to Texas Tech and to this program,” Hocutt told Don Williams of the Lubbock Avalanche-Journal. “That’s our commitment, to provide affordable options to allow everyone to enjoy Texas Tech football and provide this program with a true homefield advantage.”
To get there, Texas Tech steps rarely made in big-time athletics: lowering ticket prices. Seats in the upper-level southwest corner of Jones AT&T Stadium have dropped from $309 to $189, and another strip of seating has been priced at $149 for the season, below the standard $189 season-ticket price.
Texas Tech has also installed two significant changes to Jones AT&T Stadium. Most importantly, favorite son Kliff Kingsbury has returned to Lubbock with a whirlwind of pandemonium. Texas Tech officials report that season ticket sales have spiked by 2,000 seats since the announcement of Kingsbury's hiring on Dec. 12.
Off the field, the Red Raiders have upgraded to an HD scoreboard, believed to be the eighth-largest in college football.
"Our goal is to sell out that stadium six or seven times a year and provide as many price points and options for our fans as we possibly can," Hocutt said.