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Official Review by Aaron S. Terry, Stadium Journey Regional Correspondent
Built in 1947 as Jones Stadium, and named after former Texas Tech president Clifford B. Jones and his wife Aubrey, Jones AT&T Stadium currently has a capacity of 60,454. Donations from SBC Communications (now AT&T) in 2000 led to the current name. The stadium has undergone $135MM in renovations since 2003, including new luxury boxes and club seats, new concessions and restrooms throughout the stadium, a new locker room and press box, a new high-def video board, and a brand-new sound system.
The FANFARE scale is our metric device for rating each stadium experience. It covers the following:
Each area is rated from 0 to 5 stars with 5 being the best. The overall composite score is the "FANFARE Score".
There are a ton of food options at Jones AT&T Stadium, and there are even "Hungry Fan" maps around the stadium showing where each of the concession stands are located.
The main stands offer all the usual suspects, but with more variety - there are several burger options, and numerous hot dog options, including Tex-Mex, Asian, and even bacon-wrapped. You can also find pizza and chicken tenders, as well as snacks such as nachos, pretzels, popcorn, sunflower seeds, and even pickles. Satellite stands add items such as Chick-fil-A sandwiches, kettle corn, funnel cake, and cotton candy to the mix. Prices are a little higher than you might see elsewhere, ranging from $4 all the way up to $11 per item.
Drink options include Coke products (from the fountain) and bottled water. Jones AT&T Stadium is an alcohol-free facility, but you can can drink before or after the game right outside the stadium. They do let you bring in empty water bottles to fill during the game (empty to make sure you don't smuggle in clear liquor).
Jones AT&T Stadium is a great looking stadium from the outside, with beautiful brickwork, and is a ton of fun on the inside, with a great crowd, good sight lines, and lots of fun traditions.
Most of the seats are metal bleachers, but there are sections of chair backs on both the east and west sides. The student section is located in the middle of both end zones (grass in the north, bleachers in the south), and is very loud. The stadium is not actually as big as it looks, so even the highest seats are not far from the field, especially in the end zones, which don't seat that many; most of the seats are on the sidelines.
One of the highlights of the game occurs just before opening kickoff, when The Masked Rider (a caped rider on horseback, either male or female) leads the team onto the field, to the enthusiastic cheers of the home crowd. The Masked Rider will also sometimes dash across the end zone after a Raider touchdown. You will also see Raider Red, with guns up, pumping up the crowd. But the weirdest tradition at Jones AT&T Stadium is when fans throw tortillas onto the field, which I am surprised the NCAA allows. This occurs most notably during the opening kickoff, but you will see a few more airborne tortillas during subsequent kickoffs and after early Raider touchdowns (until the fans run out of ammo).
See a video of The Masked Rider here:
Texas is very hot, so your best bet is to sit on the west or south, which will get you out of the sun as quickly as possible.
Lubbock offers a number of attractions and restaurants, which you might not expect from a city in the middle of nowhere, that is a very long drive from other major cities in Texas.
There are a slew of restaurants within walking distance of the stadium, starting with Hurricane Grill & Wings, Ruby Tequila's Mexican Kitchen, and Chili's, all of which are right across the street. These tend to be very crowded, however, so you may want to walk about 5-10 blocks down University Ave, and find one of the college dive bars - Chimy's is the most popular, but Bar PM and Cricket's are also great, and these last two are much less crowded.
There is plenty to do in Lubbock if you want to stay the weekend, or even just a day, including the National Ranching Heritage Center, the Silent Wings Museum near the airport (dedicated to the hang glider pilots of WWII), and the Buddy Holly Center, statue, and West Texas Walk of Fame.
There are plenty of hotels in the area, depending on how much you want to spend and how close you want to stay - the closest ones to the stadium are Days Inns, Courtyard by Marriott, and Overton Hotel & Convention Center.
Texas Tech fans are loud, engaged, and are there in force to cheer on their team.
Jones AT&T Stadium is typically sold out or close to it, and the fans are involved throughout the game, showing their guns up, and cheering loudly on third downs and after Raider scores. Most wear red, and even in the alumni section, most fans stand throughout the game, and stay until the end, even during a loss.
Lubbock is not the easiest place to get to if you are from out of town, but if you live nearby, it isn't bad. Expect some traffic jams and a little trouble getting in and out on game days, however.
There is a smallish airport in Lubbock, and I highly recommend flying in if you can manage it, instead of driving many hours from bigger cities like Dallas or Houston.
Even many hours before the game, parking close to the stadium can be hard to find, and is expensive. You can find parking for as little as $5 if you go 15 blocks away, but much closer will cost you $20 or more.
There are entrances all over the stadium, and all are equally good. The earlier you can get there the better, so as to avoid the crowds just before kickoff.
There are plenty of bathrooms (only on the east and west sides) and concession stands (on all sides), so you shouldn't have any trouble finding them. The concourse feels a little crowded, but there are enough facilities that the lines are not too bad.
Depending on which game you pick, tickets are no more expensive here than at similarly-sized venues. While concessions and parking may be a little on the high side, the great crowd and fun amenities more than make up for it.
Tickets range from $35-$55 for certain games (think FCS opponents), and max out at $75-$95 for games against in-state conference rivals like Texas or TCU. Since there is only a $20 difference between the "best" and "worst" seats, it may be worthwhile to splurge and get the chair backs, or get closer to the field.
One point for the logo-shaped TT scoreboard in the end zone. It doesn't have a video board on it, but it is a great homage to the team.
A second point for the stadium architecture - Jones AT&T Stadium is a really impressive sight to behold, with beautiful brickwork and stunning columns.
A third point for The Masked Rider, who makes multiple appearances during the game. Many teams start their games with something spectacular such as this, but it is rare to be able to witness it multiple times.
A fourth point for the local attractions around Lubbock, such as the Ranching Center and the West Texas Walk of Fame. These types of exhibits add to the experience, and give you even more reasons to make the trip.
Jones AT&T Stadium is absolutely worth a visit if you have the chance - even a game against an FCS opponent will provide all the amenities, and provide a great experience, and Lubbock is worth visiting if you have never been to West Texas.
Member Review by pderrick
When most people mention the city of Lubbock, college football fans think of highly potent offenses that are known to put up big numbers. As for anyone who has visited Lubbock they can tell you about the beauty of Jones AT&T Stadium the home of the Texas Tech Red Raiders.
It's known simply as "The Jones" and the Red Raiders have called Jones AT&T Stadium home since the 1947 season. The Stadium originally held just 27,000 during its original build but after many renovations the stadium can now hold over 60,000 fans. The Red Raiders started reaching national prominence during former head coach Mike Leach's tenure reaching 9 bowl games in 10 years. The team is always dangerous due to its potent offense and always has a chance of an upset in big games.
Member Review by Techsan on Jun 10, 2012
Lubbock and Tech love their Red Raiders. Students are 100% into the game and are intimidating to visiting teams. Stadium has access to majors highways and city roads, is close to tons of restaurants and bars, and there is not a bad seat in the house.
Member Review by pwdonaldson on Nov 23, 2012
Out in West Texas, amongst cotton fields and wind turbines sits Lubbock, Texas. The town is home of the Red Raiders of Texas Tech University and Jones AT&T Stadium. The area is famous for passionate high school football fans, but it’s unlikely you’ll find more passion anywhere in West Texas than Jones AT&T Stadium on a Saturday night. Texas Tech has called “The Jones” home since its construction in 1947 and the venue has undergone significant improvements since then. Originally constructed with a capacity of 27,000, Jones AT&T Stadium has undergone tremendous improvements since hosting its first game in 1947.
In 1959 the stadium capacity was increased to 41,500 and then again in 1972 to 48,000. In 2003, a new press box and club seating was added to the west side increasing capacity yet again to 52,882. After adding additional endzone seating, Jones AT&T now holds 60,454.
Though The Jones has changed over the years, fans with guns held high chanting “Wreck ‘em, Tech” have remained as passionate as ever making this stadium experience one worth traveling to West Texas for.
Member Review by caltexan on Aug 27, 2013
Fantastic college atomsphere...
Member Review by Lbbsport on Oct 20, 2013
Many publications have rated this facility one of the loudest and most intimidating in the nation. Especially for big rivalry type games or games that have a bearing on the BIG 12 race. Excellent concessions choices as well. Area is decent but in a very urban setting. Parking can be a issue. Atmosphere is loud and the fan base is very passionate.
Member Review by DustyTxn on May 12, 2016
...in the nation. I have been to many.
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