Make Red River showdown tickets more accessible

Mia Abbe, Columnist

It wouldn’t be an exaggeration to say that the Red River Showdown is one of the most highly anticipated football events of the year, both for UT and in the world of college football. The week before the game is christened “Hate Week,” with students from both schools participating in gentle bashing over social media. UT even throws an annual Texas Fight Parade and a Texas Fight Rally to send off the football team. 

Unfortunately, many UT students can only participate so far in the festivities. The game itself is not included in the Big Ticket, and while students do have the option of purchasing football tickets over the summer, individual Red River Showdown tickets from Texas Athletics are $150. If students choose to not buy tickets over the summer, resale ticket prices can range upwards of $200, depending on how well each team is doing. Because the Red River Showdown is an important UT event, tickets should be made more accessible to the student body.

It’s understandable that ticket prices are high due to the game being almost as important as a bowl game, meaning pricing doesn’t follow the same rules as home games in Darrell K Royal-Texas Memorial Stadium, but current ticket prices are still unreasonably high.

UT should offer a discount for students trying to purchase tickets for the student section. If this is not possible, UT should at least extend the deadline to purchase tickets into the fall semester to allow students time to plan. 

Finance junior Keaton Christian has been to six games at the Cotton Bowl and spoke on what he thought the University could improve. 

“For the way they do home games, I think it’s great. You can buy the Big Ticket in the summer, and you’ll have access to all the games the whole year,” Christian said. “The one thing that kind of sucks is that they don’t sell tickets (for the Red River Showdown) past the summer. I think it just sucks that people who (can’t buy tickets in the summer) kind of get screwed over because that option doesn’t exist and so they have to go talk to other students or go and pay 30, 40, 50 extra bucks on StubHub.” 

Additionally, having incredibly expensive tickets to the UT/OU game caters to alumni, rather than students who may not be able to afford such high prices. Because the game is held in another city, attendance requires a long drive both ways and potentially organizing an overnight stay, which are added costs to an already pricey weekend. Expecting students to purchase unreasonably expensive tickets to an away game in the middle of the semester is unfair to students who just want to take part in a UT tradition.  

According to Drew Martin, the Executive Senior Associate Director for Texas Athletics External Affairs, Texas Athletics has never had an issue selling tickets due to prices. However, this does not change the fact that the high cost makes the game less accessible to students. 

“The ticket price is decided on between Texas and Oklahoma … the tickets are sold at that price across the board to all fans,” Martin said. 

Because the Red River Showdown is such an iconic UT event, ticket prices should be made cheaper so that more students have the opportunity to attend the game. Students should not have to miss out on school traditions simply because the price is too high. 

Abbe is a communications studies sophomore from Fort Worth, Texas.