Sports

The History of Jones AT&T Stadium

graphic of jones at&t stadium
Graphic by Adrian Gutierrez

Early Years of Jones AT&T Stadium History

Jones At&t Stadium address is 1305 University Ave. The Jones opened in 1947 in Lubbock, Texas, on the campus of Texas Tech University. Jones At&t stadium seats 60,454 fans with 83 executive suites throughout the stadium. From 1947-2000 Jones Stadium went by Clifford B. & Audrey Jones Stadium, then from 2000-2006, it was called Jones SBC Stadium. Jones At&t Stadium is the 44th largest stadium in college football in the United States based on capacity. The original stadium seating capacity was 27,000, but in 1959 Jones At&t Stadium expanded to 41,500.

Features

One of the unique features at Jones At&t Stadium is the Double T Scoreboard located in the South endzone. Through multiple stadium renovations, the Double T has stayed in place and has been upgraded with LED lights. In 2017 Texas Tech University added a 48 million dollar sports performance center right behind the South endzone. The facility overlooks the stadium adding an excellent background to Jones Stadium. Before the 2013 football season, Texas Tech built an 11 million dollar jumbotron in the North endzone, one of the country’s largest. The jumbotron is 100 feet wide and 38 feet tall, ranking it the 16th largest jumbotron by square feet amongst NCAA football stadiums. The playing field was grass when the stadium first opened but was switched to Astroturf in 1970. Then in 2006 was changed to FieldTurf, a higher quality playing surface.

Events Held

Jones At&t stadium has held various events over the years, but Texas Tech football is its primary use. The Texas Tech Red Raiders hosted their first game in Jones Stadium against the Hardin-Simmons Cowboys on November 29th, 1947. The Red Raiders would pull off a 14 – 6 victory against the Cowboys. Jones At&t stadium even hosted the Coaches All-American game from 1970 to 1975. The game was moved from War Memorial Stadium in Buffalo, New York, to Lubbock, Tx due to attendance and capacity issues. Jones At&t Stadium is used for high schools playoff sports, such as football and soccer. The venue has also held graduations as well as club events.

Student Section & Attendance

Jones AT&T Stadium’s highest attendance was 61,836 against the Oklahoma St. Cowboys in the fall of 2013. The Red Raiders would come up short in that game, losing 52-34 in a shootout. Jones At&t Stadium is known to get wild once the sun sets in West Texas. ESPN even named Texas Tech’s student section as the best in the Big 12. On September 12th, 2013, Texas Tech broke the student section attendance record with 16,092 students against TCU. Texas Tech’s student section is even known for throwing tortillas on the opening kickoff of the game. Since the Michael Crabtree catch against Texas in 2008, Tech has seen a 25% increase in the average student attendance.

Texas vs. Texas Tech 2008

Jones At&t Stadium has had some very memorable games over the years, but everyone knows where they were when Michael Crabtree caught the game-winning touchdown against No. 1 Texas. ESPN’s College Gameday was in Lubbock for the showdown, and former Texas Tech basketball Coach Bob Knight famously said, “I deeply hope we beat their ass today,” on air. No. 1 Texas vs. No. 7 Texas Tech was a battle of the undefeated’s, and the theme for Jones At&t Stadium that November night was a blackout.

It was a sea of black in all the seats throughout the stadium. Texas quarterback Colt McCoy and Tech’s quarterback Graham Harrell put on a show, but Graham Harrell threw a sideline pass to Michael Crabtree with eight seconds to go. Crabtree somehow broke off of a tackle and tip-toed into the endzone with one second remaining, putting Texas Tech on top 38-33. Fans stormed onto the field, and Jones At&t stadium turned into an actual sea of black that November night.

Experience

Jones At&t Stadium brings all the things we love about football into one. The tailgating outside the Jones is terrific; the smells of barbeque linger in the West Texas air while the chant Raider Power is going on throughout the stadium. Before kickoff, the Masked Rider rides out on her all-black matador while the team runs out behind her. The Masked Rider comes out of the south endzone and rides up the field towards the north endzone, giving everyone a glimpse of the matador.

The entertainment on game day in Lubbock consists of fraternity, student clubs, and family tailgates. Outside of Jones At&t Stadium is an experience of a lifetime; parking is tricky because almost everyone in Lubbock is ready to rock once they get inside the stadium. An Alumni event is always going on throughout Jones At&t Stadium.

Seating

Anytime the Red Raiders play Oklahoma State, a seat in the Jones is hard to find, but that goes for most games at the Jones, especially when Tech is playing a Big 12 opponent. Jones At&t Stadium has numerous club seats. There are multiple club sections, but the North, East, and West clubs all have different amenities. Each club has a diverse price range, but the West club is on the home side with a perfect field view. All clubs at Jones At&t Stadium come with reserved parking, climate-controlled lounges, a complimentary buffet, complimentary alcohol, and a full cash bar.

Tickets

Ticket booths are all over the stadium, but the main two are at the East and West entrances of Jones Stadium. The West Club’s pricing starts as low as $2,400 but gets up to $3,150, while the East and North Clubs will top out in the upper 2,000s. Regular tickets at Jones At&t Stadium range from $20- $400, but every seat in Jones Stadium is a good seat with the way the stadium is arranged.

Upcoming Year

As the Texas Tech Red Raiders Football team prepares for the 2021 college football season. Matt Wells has many questions to answer. Matt Wells did bring in Tech Alum Sonny Cumbie after a long search, Cumbie has a pretty good history at the Jones. Cumbie brings in an exciting offense that’ll have the Jones feeling like 2008 again. The Jones hasn’t seen a winning season in a few years and this year looks to be the year Texas Tech comes out hot from the start. With the emergence of wide receiver Erik Ezukanama and quarterback Tyler Shough, Tech looks to pack out the Jones this fall. This duo is going to bring Tech football back and put fans in the seats, it’s Shough time.

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Story By: Campus Live Intern Jack Damon

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