Texas Tech is making preparations for a rare Thursday night home game, to be played against TCU on Sept 12. Because the game falls on a weekday, the university is asking students and faculty to make special accommodations for fans. The big problem is parking.
Texas Tech Associate Athletic Director of Communications Blayne Beal outlined the plan for us on Tuesday.
The university wants all lots, except ones they refer to as "Commuter West." located by the United Spirit Arena at 18th and Indiana, to be vacated by 4 p.m. so fans can park in their assigned spots. If a car is in a parking lot too long, Beal says it will be towed. He feels what the school is asking people to do is not unreasonable.
"The parking lots will open at 4 p.m. that day, we believe that's a great plan. It's three or four Thursday night games every year that have to be played, so this is going to be something that every school in the Big 12 conference is going to have to do so this is just part of the deal and something we're going to have to get used to going forward," Beal said.
"We talked to a lot of schools across the country who have these Thursday night games, Virginia Tech being a prime example," Beal said. "They host one...nearly every year... We talked to our friends in Stillwater, they hosted one a couple of years ago, and this was pretty much the standard plan across the country."
Beal says Texas Tech has high expectations for this game because it brings special attention to the school, as opposed to being just another game that's played on Sunday. He says this can help Texas Tech recruit and get better.
Beal says Tech is in an enviable position.
"Schools we spoke with say that their Thursday night games are the best and I can tell you right now, as a university, we're anticipating the largest student turnout for a football game that we've ever had."
Students we spoke with said they didn't mind the new rules as long as tailgating wasn't affected.
"Well, I'd be okay with it either way. Living on campus walking to the tailgates usually only takes me two to three minutes, so I can usually get all my classes out of the way and all my homework done before I head out there. I know that's what my dad wants to hear," said Freshman Jacob Gustainis.
"The games are wonderful, just tailgating in general it's a great experience. It's one of the most important parts of the game - going to meet everybody there and going as a group to the game with all your friends makes it much better," Gustainis said.
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