LUBBOCK, Texas — If Texas Tech thought football ticket sales were good in 2008, things appear like they will go to a whole new level in the first season under new head football coach Tommy Tuberville.
Tech athletics announced Wednesday that the ticket sales office reached a record in season ticket sales for the upcoming year with a total of 30,709 sold and growing by the minute.
It is the second time in three years that season ticket sales have set a new mark after preseason sales hit 30,092 before the amazing 2008 season when Tech went 11-1 and earned its second Cotton Bowl berth in four years.
"We couldn't be happier with the enthusiasm that our fans have for this football program," Tuberville said in the release. "If you haven't purchased your season tickets yet, it's not too late. They still have plenty of seats. We want to make sure that Jones AT&T Stadium is full every time we step out on the field."
The growing interest in Tuberville and the new regime at Tech is one of many things to help spark the record numbers. Tech is expected to finish a new East Side expansion project by the opening kickoff against SMU on Sept. 5, as well as the addition of 6,100 seats in the northwest and northeast end zones of the stadium, which were added just before the Texas A&M game last season.
Tech set a record for attendance against A&M with 57,333 in attendance. That number broke the previous mark set in 2008 in the historic game against then-No. 1 Texas (56,333).
Expectations are not only high for Tuberville and the team but also for Tech assistant athletic director for ticket operations Dave Welsh, who expects Red Raider fans will help shatter the attendance record and push the number to more than 60,000 fans in a single game this season, more than likely in the third week against Texas (Sept. 18).
"It just shows the fans we have and the faith in coach Tuberville," Welsh said. "From the day he was hired, it's been that way since day one. It's just a great reflection of the fan base and the excitement around this season."
The 30,709 season tickets sold in addition to the 12,548 student allotment brings the total to 43,257 total seats before the season begins. Welsh said usually 1,000 tickets will be sold for visiting team fans each game with an estimated 3,850 tickets available at the most to visiting team fans, usually only for the Texas or A&M game each season.
This year is also the first chance for students to purchase special season ticket plans of their own, giving them the option of having guaranteed seats in either of the two corner sections of the North end zone (Sec. 109-111 or Sec. 113-115). Welsh said students have already purchased 579 season tickets with that plan.
He also noted that there is no estimation as to how many season tickets might be sold before the SMU game. Tech sold out of season tickets just nine days before the opening game in 2008.
"It's uncharted territory," Welsh said. "It will be really interesting to see what happens at this rate if it keeps going. If the numbers continue to go through the roof then we may be in the same situation where we are actually out of season tickets."
Fans can still purchase season tickets online at www.texastech.com or by calling the athletics ticket office at (806) 742-4412 or (888) GO-BIG12. Fans interested in club seats or one of the few remaining suites in the new East side building should contact the Red Raider Club at (806) 742-1195.