ESPN says Texas Tech has best student section in Big 12 - KCBD NewsChannel 11 Lubbock

ESPN says Texas Tech has best student section in Big 12

LUBBOCK, TX (KCBD) -

ESPN says Texas Tech University has won the gold medal for best student section in the Big 12.

We roamed the streets of Raiderland to find out what these fearless fans had to say.

"I think that's awesome," said freshman Kelli Kanippa.

"I think it's well deserved. I think that our student section is very spirited and we have a lot of traditions and spirits that we keep throughout the school. I think it's awesome. It's a great honor," freshman Cassie Ortiz said.

Texas Tech beat out the Baylor Bears and lassoed in the Oklahoma State Cowboys for this coveted spot. The Longhorns didn't even make the list. And despite the Red Raiders rowdy reputation, students say it's no surprise that they took home the gold.

"We shared our spirit a lot this season at football games, too. They kept having to expand the student section more and more," said freshman Alex Williams.

Williams is right. While most of the nation had a decline in student attendance at college football games, Tech set student attendance records two home games in a row.

So what's the secret behind this groundswell of student support? It all comes back to new Head Football Coach Kliff Kingsbury.

"Kliff could be the blame for this year," junior Grant Easdon said.

"I think every week people are coming to see Kliff and it kept going and going... We beat the record every week so I think he is a big part of it," Easdon said.

Traditions like the Saddle Tramps, "Raider Power" chants, and the Masked Rider has Tech at the top for "attendance, interest, noise and, well, who seems to have the most fun," according to ESPN.

But there's no denying that Red Raiders have a reputation for being rowdy. So where's the line?

"There's no such thing as being too rowdy," Ortiz said.

"I think there are times when people can stop thinking and do stupid stuff, but all in all, I really enjoy our students at Tech," Kanippa said.

Tech hopes this school spirit will transfer onto the hardwood floors. The men's basketball team will take on the Kansas Jayhawks at 7 p.m. Tuesday and they want a packed United Spirit Arena.

Click here to read ESPN's endorsement of the Texas Tech student section

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