The folks from ESPN's College Game Day show chose to set up shop today in Auburn, Ala. rather than Lubbock -- as they did in 2008 -- leading into that year's Texas Tech-Texas showdown. But the atmosphere in Lubbock, four-plus hours before game time, feels just as electic as it did two years ago before the teams hooked up in a classic game, won by the Red Raiders 39-33 on a last-second TD.
You can't turn on a televison or radio -- any station, either appliance -- without hearing/seeing a commercial about tonight's impending "Red Out" at AT&T Jones Stadium, complete with an official, red T-shirt bearing the slogan: "Threat Level: Red."
The shirt urges fans to "Red Out the Jones!," where a stadium-record crowd is expected, thanks to a recent expansion of the stands on the east side. Texas Tech flags are flying in front of just about every business in town and the game is the primary topic of conversation in restaurants and other gathering places.
If the game lives up to the pre-game buzz, it promises to be another classic.
_ Jimmy Burch