Texas Tech alumni set to support Red Raiders in San Diego
LUBBOCK, Texas (KCBD) - Big 12 Championship runner-ups, the Red Raiders, are going to the NCAA Tournament for the fourth year in a row. In less than 72 hours, the Texas Tech men’s basketball team will take the court for the first round in San Diego. While the game is more than a thousand miles away, proud alumni and fans will be there to cheer on the team.
For alumni traveling to the game, the Texas Tech Alumni Association is helping set them up for success. There are 80 chapters within the association, located all across the nation and one even in London.
”Red Raiders are walking rather tall these days,” Curt Langford, president of the Texas Tech Alumni Association, said.
All along the journey, proud alumni have filled up the stands in the United Supermarkets Arena and traveled with the team. Langford says while Texas Tech has always had a strong basketball tradition, it picked back up with the Final Four appearance in 2019.
“That event up in Minneapolis, I couldn’t help but think when I was in there, we were all just kind of pinching ourselves, it’s amazing. So many people in the country were doing a double-take for the Double T, as I like to say,” Langford said.
For this championship run, the road starts in San Diego. The alumni chapter there is ready to cheer on the team in its hometown.
“No matter how far away you move, there’s still a little part of you that keeps and pays attention to what the Red Raiders are doing,” Alumna Jenny Mehlow said.
Mehlow has lived in San Diego since 2004. She says much like the city, the alumni chapter usually consists of military Red Raiders moving in and out. She and Langford have been helping set up some events for alumni there and those traveling for the game.
“He was the first one to let me know that Texas Tech was coming into town, and so we got things in gear to get things ready for a bunch of alumni coming into San Diego,” Mehlow said.
Alumni will get together for a big breakfast before tipoff, the restaurant only a short trolley ride away from Viejas Arena at San Diego State University. Langford says each school gets about 200 tickets to the game, but many more fans will be tuning in.
He said the 2019 Final Four drew Red Raider fans from all over. “I don’t know that there’s ever been a larger concentration of Texas Tech fans since the Cotton Bowl, perhaps in ‘95.,” Langford said.
Proud Texas Tech grad, Mehlow hasn’t been able to get back home in quite some time. She’ll be in the arena Friday.
“So I haven’t been able to watch a Texas Tech basketball game since 1997 when I graduated, and so it’ll be nice to see the Red Raiders on the court,” Mehlow said.
If you’re heading to San Diego for the game, Mehlow suggests going to SanDiego.org for all kinds of hotel and travel tips. She says the San Diego chapter hopes to plan another event Sunday if the Red Raiders win in the first round.
Langford recommends downloading the Texas Tech Alumni Association app to stay updated with the events.
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