Official newspaper of The University of Texas at Austin

The Daily Texan

Official newspaper of The University of Texas at Austin

The Daily Texan

Official newspaper of The University of Texas at Austin

The Daily Texan

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October 4, 2022

University hosts celebration for official induction into SEC

Lorianne Willett
Texas Spirit dances in front of Littlefield Fountain on June 30, 2024.

The University hosted a free public event on Sunday to celebrate its move into the Southeastern Conference. The celebration included a parade, carnival games and a free Pitbull concert in front of the Tower.

The event began on the South Mall at 1 p.m. as carnival rides, food trucks, company booths and SEC-themed pop-ups filled the lawn and 21st Street. Attendees could also take part in free activities at University museums and join a parade featuring Bevo XV in the lead-up to the official ceremony inducting UT into the SEC at 8:30 p.m.

“Football season is going to be absolutely incredible,” said Christopher Wade Van Dyke, an economics junior and member of the Silver Spurs. “To (play) Georgia at home, you couldn’t ask for a better game.”

The University estimated tens of thousands of people attending the celebration. The Main Mall reached capacity at 8:20 p.m. 

“It was really fun for this to be my introduction to campus and campus life and all the social stuff that goes on here,” said Saadrusya Sarbepalli, an incoming public health freshman. 

Singer and songwriter Django Walker performed an updated version of “Texas Longhorn,” a song based on UT’s football team, to commemorate the move. Accompanied by the Longhorn Band, Texas cheerleaders performed for the crowd commencing the induction ceremony. 

UT Athletics Director Chris Del Conte, UT President Jay Hartzell, Board of Regents Chairman Kevin Eltife and SEC Commissioner Greg Sankey all spoke before the official induction into the SEC.

“We are about to compete against the most visible prestigious conference in the country,” Hartzell said. “We will revive old rivalries and start new ones, and we’re not just coming to compete we are coming to win.” 

The University officially joined the SEC at 9 p.m.

 Following the ceremony, Pitbull took the stage to perform a selection of his songs including “Fireball,” “Hotel Room Service” and “Time of Our Lives.”

The concert and celebration officially ended at 10:20 p.m. 

“We have the best athletes, the best coaches, the best staff (and) the best fan base,” Hartzell said. “When you have all that you have to compete against the very best.”

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About the Contributor
Lorianne Willett, Photo Editor
Lorianne is a Journalism and Global Sustainability junior from San Antonio, Texas. Currently, she is the Photo Editor. In her free time, she enjoys reading and playing tennis.