By Tiffany Pelt - email
LUBBOCK, TX (KCBD) – Nearly 2,000 students are expected to camp out at Raiderville by the end of Wednesday night, making sure they have a seat at Tech's big game against Texas this Saturday.
"Last year we came out on Monday and there was no one here," said Texas Tech Junior Austin Degraaf. "But this year we came out on Monday again and there were probably 400 people here before us."
Since late Sunday night students have been grabbing their gear and setting up tents at Raiderville. Each day the population has doubled from the day before reaching totals bigger than some west Texas towns surrounding Lubbock.
On Monday Raiderville's population was more than 400 red raiders. That's bigger than the population of Loop and Lazbuddie combined, and about the same size of Whiteface and Ropesville.
Tuesday Raiderville had more people than the entire population of New Deal with close to 800 students camping out.
On Wednesday morning the population doubled again to nearly 1,600 excited fans getting ready for the big game. That's like the entire town of Shallowater staying at Raiderville. "This is way bigger than last year where I think we had about 600 students," said Degraaf.
With so many red raiders making their presences known at Raiderville, the football team and head coach Tuberville stopped by to hand out candy and visit with the faithful residents of the rapidly growing town. "We're happy for the support and we're just giving back because they're staying out here waiting for tickets," said Texas Tech defensive back Don Hursey. "We love it. It's just crazy, the atmosphere out here."
Tech officials expect students to start lining up at the gates sometime on Friday. There are only 12,500 student seats at Jones Stadium, and those seats are expected to be filled with in an hour of gates opening but officials say they will let as many students as possible sit in the grassy area to watch the game.
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