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Red Raider Gridiron: TTU & BU to Continue to Play at AT&T Stadium; Finalizing Non-Conference Opponents

Texas Tech and Baylor will continue to play at AT&T Stadium through 2018 and Texas Tech is working on finalizing non-conference opponents with the SEC and Pac-12.

Happened upon this photo of the great Roger Staubach.  Navy Midshipmen quarterback Roger Staubach (12) scrambles against the Michigan Wolverines at Michigan Stadium.
Happened upon this photo of the great Roger Staubach. Navy Midshipmen quarterback Roger Staubach (12) scrambles against the Michigan Wolverines at Michigan Stadium.
Malcolm Emmons-US PRESSWIRE

Baylor vs. Texas Tech in AT&T Stadium Through 2018. The LAJ and DMN (for the free version) write that Texas Tech and Baylor are near an agreement to continue to play at AT&T Stadium through the year 2018.  In even number years, Texas Tech will play Baylor at Cowboys Stadium on the Thanksgiving weekend, while on odd number of years, Texas Tech will continue to play Texas in Austin on Thanksgiving day.  Here's athletic director Kirby Hocutt from the LAJ article:

Tech makes more than $3 million from a home sellout, Hocutt said. In the case of a conference opponent, however, that's every-other-year revenue. Playing Baylor in Arlington, Hocutt said, Tech's share is $2 million-plus every year.

"We come out ahead over the two-year period," he said.

Nevertheless, some Tech fans have complained about the series being moved to a neutral site.

Hocutt said he would not be in favor of continuing the series in Arlington were the games not on Thanksgiving weekend during Tech's years as the home team. The last time Tech and Baylor played in Lubbock was on Thanksgiving weekend 2008, and the announced crowd was 53,470.

"Obviously, that's not a new topic," Hocutt said. "We're so fortunate to have the support in Lubbock and West Texas that we have. It would be a different story for me if it was not on Thanksgiving weekend when our student body is not on our campus.

"I think it would be very difficult to look our community partners in the eye and take a conference game that was on a traditional college football Saturday away from this community. That would be very difficult to do."

I've attended one of these games, with opportunities to have attended more, but after having been to the stadium once, I was never that enamored with going back again.  I do understand Hocutt's situation in that it is tough to sell out a stadium during the Thanksgiving holiday with all of the students gone and the chance to make an extra million doesn't hurt either. I wonder if contractually Texas Tech is guaranteed a $2 million payout or if this is dependent upon gate revenue?

Texas Tech in Talks for Non-Conference Games with SEC and Pac-12 Opponents. Also from the LAJ is the story that Texas Tech is continuing to work two non-conference series with an SEC and Pac-12 opponent.  The SEC opponent is not Arkansas, Mississippi State or Texas A&M and will not happen until 2020 and 2021 on a home-and-home basis, while Hocutt also said that Texas Tech is working on a non-conference opponent from the Pac-12 is not Arizona State, who Texas Tech plays in 2016-2017, and would be prior to the SEC opponent, which would be the 2018-2019 seasons.

Coaches in Hawaii. Well, what a nice way to spend a couple of days on a bye week, as Mike Smith and Lee Hays were in Hawaii, at the very least, seeing Texas Tech commit DT Breiden Fehoko, and probably making stops to see a couple of other players on the island.  I feel less creepy linking to Fehoko's twitter since he has signed a financial aid agreement, which is not binding on the player, but it does permit Texas Tech to have open contact with him.

Mahomes Practices. I had heard this a few days ago, that QB Patrick Mahomes would practice this week and he is expected to be ready to play next Saturday against Oklahoma.  Head coach Kliff Kingsbury did confirm this during his weekly radio show last night.  Kingsbury didn't name a starter, but you can expect that if Mahomes is healthy and ready to go, it will be Mahomes.  If Davis Webb is healthy, it will be Webb, although I do have doubts that Webb will play for the rest of the year.

Miscellaneous. Our friends over at Wide Right & Natty Lite ranked the Big 12 fans and they ranked Texas Tech last /shakes fist at Wide Right & Natty Lite / . . . interesting stuff from John Infante, who has a new blog at 30 Mile Radius, where he looks at the graduation rate for graduate transfers and it's pretty danged poor for football and men's basketball . . .