Texas vs. Texas Tech • Jones AT&T Stadium • Lubbock, TX • November 1, 2008
The town is completely flat, the wind seems to blow nonstop, and let’s just say Red Raiders fans aren’t known for being the most hospitable bunch, especially towards Longhorns fans. But while Lubbock may not appeal to your five senses, it will appeal to your sense of adventure and what makes the high plains seem uninhabitable also makes it uninhibited. Texas Tech didn’t get its reputation as one of the biggest party schools in the country for nothing.
For those of you heading out west this weekend and in addition to all good comments from the "Traveling to Lubbock" Fanpost, here are a few road trip travel tips for Lubbock (previously published in The Eyes Of Texas 2008 Preview Guide)...
Lodging: Lubbock’s infrastructure definitely isn’t set up to accommodate large numbers of visitors, so make hotel reservations well in advance, as space is limited. There are a number of mid-priced hotels located not far from the campus and the Depot Entertainment District on Avenue Q between 4th Street and Broadway. If these hotels are booked, you may also want to check out some hotels on the South Loop (289), only a 15 minute drive from the stadium.
NOTE: I'm sure these are all booked up by now, but hey, you never know.
The Lubbock Inn
3901 19th Street 79410
Holiday Inn Hotel & Towers
801 Avenue Q, 79401
La Quinta Civic Center
601 Avenue Q, 79401
Transportation: If you’re flying into Lubbock, a rental car is a must for getting around as the town is extremely spread out. Word to the wise though: call a taxi if you plan on hitting the bar scene at night.
Restaurants/Bars: In Lubbock, the predominant culinary theme may very well be, “don’t knock it until you’ve fried it.” But no matter what your taste preferences are or where you choose to tie on your feedbag, you better come packing a hearty appetite and a powerful thirst. Speaking of, look no further than the Depot District, located near 19th Street and Buddy Holly Ave. Many of the bars and nightclubs there were remodeled from the original Fort Worth & Denver South Plains Railway Depot.
Cricket’s Grill & Draft House, 2412 Broadway, 806-744-4677
The 50 Yard Line Steakhouse, 2549 South Loop 289, 806-745-3991 ($$$, reservations required)
Spanky’s Sandwich Shop, 811 University Ave., 806-744-5677
Bash Riprocks, 2419 Main Street, 806-762-2274
Bleacher’s Sports Café, 1719 Buddy Holly Ave., 806-744-7767 (Apparently this place has closed, sorry)
Chimy’s Cerveceria, 2417 Broadway, 806-763-7369
Tailgating: Believe it or not, Lubbock used to be the biggest “dry” city in the country until 1972. And while it is permissible to sell alcohol “by the drink” in restaurants and bars within the city limits, liquor stores and packaged sales are still forbidden. If you want to buy beer, you’ll need to drive south of town to what is affectionately known as “the Strip” (Hwy 87 and 98th St.), a row of drive-thru liquor stores festooned with a veritable cornucopia of superfluous Vegas-style luminescence. You simply hand the attendant your cooler and a credit card and it comes back full of ice and your beverage of choice.
As for actually tailgating, try the lot located just west of the United Spirit Arena (19th and Indiana). And if you’re looking to join a tailgate, there’s an outstanding group of Texas Tech alumni who call themselves the Ultimate Tailgaters (ttutailgaters.com). They welcome “responsible fans” regardless of affiliation and only ask for a small donation in return for great food, drink, live music, and other tailgating accoutrement.
Tickets: Longhorns vs. Red Raiders is always a big affair, but the game this year will most likely be of greater import considering Texas Tech is returning several starters from last year’s Gator Bowl winning team and should be in the thick of the Big XII South race when Texas comes to town. Tickets will be in high demand and if you’re unable to procure them through the Tech Ticket Office (806-742-TECH, texastech.cstv.com) or via the Internet, you may want to resort to scalping, which is legal around Jones AT&T stadium.
Gameday Traditions: “Guns up!” The Red Raiders official hand gesture is made by extending the thumb and index finger while raising your arm in the air, Tech fans do it in unison during the singing of the school song, cheers, and especially when the “Masked Rider,” a student wearing all black with a red cape and mounted on a black quarter horse, leads the team onto the field at breakneck speed. Before the game, look for the nine-foot statue on campus of Will Rogers atop his horse, Soapsuds. The Saddle Tramps, a long running spirit organization, wraps the statue red crepe paper before home games.
Local Attractions: In the middle of the Depot District, you’ll find The Buddy Holly Center (Corner of 19th & Crickets Ave.) featuring a gallery dedicated to the life and music of Buddy Holly as well as the Texas Musicians Hall of Fame and a Fine Arts Gallery.
For the golfers, The Rawls Red Raiders Golf Course (3720 4th Street, 806-742-4653) is consistently voted as one of the best public courses in the country and it’s located right next to campus.
Special thanks to Seth Jungman (doubletnation.com) and BJB (ramblingraiders.blogspot.com)