West Texans tend to love two things: Texas Tech athletics and beer. Why not combine them? While Texas Tech allows alcohol sales in luxury suites and club seats at certain events, I’m a believer that it would benefit the fans and the university to serve everyone of legal drinking age at Texas Tech games (of course abiding by federal and state laws).
Across the country a few schools have started selling beer at their events (most notably our rivals in Austin). Inevitably, schools that are selling beer have seen an incredible increase in revenue. For example, in the Fall of 2016, UT reported over $3.3 million from stadium alcohol sales. This is money that Texas Tech is missing out on.
The primary concern that surrounds the sale of alcohol on campuses around the country has to do with the normalization of alcohol use on campus. Including the possible liability that alcohol brings to venues, many fear that advertising and promoting alcohol on college campuses can create an unhealthy relationship between alcohol and young adults.
While protecting our youth and future Red Raiders from an unhealthy relationship with alcohol, it’s hard to fathom that alcohol advertisements and sales from a college campus can be more damaging than what those under the age of 21 are already exposed to in their daily lives. Alcohol is advertised like it’s going out of style. It’s on billboards around town, TV commercials, restaurants, concerts, and even social media. People are exposed to alcohol in numerous ways and it seems unlikely that there would be a negative correlation between young adults who admire Texas Tech and alcohol if the university were to start serving at games.
Collegiate athletics is a business and the money to be gained from alcohol sponsorship and sales is a tough one to pass up in today’s market. Facilities are such an integral part of successful college programs and money builds facilities. Texas Tech has already done a fantastic job with the new sports performance center by Jones AT&T Stadium, but an athletic department can never have too much money and beer sales is a fantastic way to enlarge Texas Tech’s pockets.