IN THE NEWS

NEWS & UPDATES

Stay up-to-date with the latest news, press releases,
event updates and more.
MEDIA INQUIRIES, CREDENTIALS & LODGING

Press Release

UNIVERSITY OF HOUSTON & TEXAS TECH UNIVERSITY TO PLAY IN THE 2021 TEXAS KICKOFF GAME AT NRG STADIUM

HOUSTON – The University of Houston Cougars and the Texas Tech University Red Raiders will move their 2021 matchup to Labor Day Weekend and meet for the eighth installment of the Texas Kickoff at NRG Stadium in Houston. The game will air on an ESPN network.  The two teams will meet for the first time since the Sept. 15, 2018 when the Red Raiders topped the Cougars, 63-49.

“With this year’s event unfortunately cancelled, we are incredibly excited to announce the 2021 matchup between two longtime Texas rivals in the University of Houston and Texas Tech University.  We look forward to continuing the tradition in 2021 of hosting another premier early season college football game at NRG Stadium,” said General Manager of Lone Star Sports & Entertainment David Fletcher.

Houston leads the all-time series, 18-13-1, with the first game taking place Oct. 6, 1951 when the Cougars defeated the Raiders, 6-0.

The game will mark the ninth year of the partnership between Lone Star Sports & Entertainment and ESPN Events, a division of ESPN, to bring a marquee early season college football events to NRG Stadium each year.

Lone Star Sports & Entertainment

Lone Star Sports & Entertainment is an event management company founded in 2003 that is closely affiliated with the NFL’s Houston Texans. Since its founding, LSSE has established itself as the leading sports event promoter in Houston with events that create a direct annual economic impact of more than $100 million for the City of Houston. In addition to the Texas Bowl and the Texas Kickoff, LSSE has emerged as a premier host for international soccer matches, including the 2017 Manchester Derby, Copa America Centenario, the 2010 MLS All-Star Game featuring Manchester United, the 2006 FC Barcelona U.S. tour, 2003 and 2008 matches between the United States and Mexico, and the 2005, 2007, 2009, 2011 and 2019 CONCACAF Gold Cups.  LSSE has also reinvigorated the Battle of the Piney Woods presented by H-E-B rivalry between Stephen F. Austin and Sam Houston State and has promoted major concerts featuring Taylor Swift and country superstars including George Strait and Kenny Chesney.

ESPN Events
ESPN Events, a division of ESPN, owns and operates a portfolio of 35 collegiate sporting events nationwide. The roster includes four early-season college football games, 17 college bowl games, 11 college basketball events, a college softball event and two college award shows, which accounts for approximately 400 hours of live programming, reaches nearly 64 million viewers and attracts over 800,000 attendees each year. With satellite offices in more than 10 markets across the country, ESPN Events builds relationships with conferences, schools and local communities, as well as providing unique experiences for teams and fans.

For more information, visit the official websiteFacebookTwitter or YouTube pages.

Media Contacts:   

Texas Kickoff: Allie LeClair at 832-667-2050; allie.leclair@houstontexans.com  
ESPN Events: Anna Negrón at anna.m.negron@espn.com or 860-256-1757

Press Release

ESPN Events Statement Regarding 2020 Texas Kickoff

Statement from ESPN Events and Lone Star Sports & Entertainment
“With the SEC’s announcement of a conference-only schedule, the 2020 Texas Kickoff is cancelled. We wish both Baylor and Ole Miss well on their upcoming seasons, and look forward to continuing the kickoff weekend tradition next year.”

-30-

Media contacts
ESPN Events: Anna Negron at anna.m.negron@espn.com or 860-256-1757
Texas Kickoff: Allie LeClair at Allie.LeClair@houstontexans.com or 832-919-0655

Press Release

2020 Texas Kickoff Featuring Baylor and Ole Miss Moves to Sunday, September 6

Bears’ Dave Aranda Makes Head Coaching Debut; Lane Kiffin’s First Game with Rebels

The 2020 Texas Kickoff featuring Baylor vs. Ole Miss is scheduled to kick off Sunday, Sept. 6, moving from the previously scheduled date of September 5. The game, played at NRG Stadium in Houston, is slated to be part of ESPN’s Labor Day weekend opening schedule, airing on an ESPN network.

The fifth installment of the annual Sunday holiday weekend game will mark Dave Aranda’s head coaching debut at Baylor and Lane Kiffin’s first game with Ole Miss as head coach. Baylor is currently ranked number 25 in ESPN’s Way-Too-Early Top 25 Rankings.

“ESPN’s Sunday game during kickoff weekend has quickly developed into a strong franchise,” said Pete Derzis, ESPN senior vice president of programming and ESPN Events. “We look forward to continuing that success as we feature two head coaches in their inaugural games with two great programs. We want to thank the schools and our Texas Kickoff team for recognizing this unique opportunity.”

Fans interested in tickets for the event can visit www.texaskickoff.com and sign up for the Priority Wait List to receive the most up to date information for when single game tickets and suites will be released.  Tickets are also available through Baylor Athletics and Ole Miss Athletics via their ticket offices.

Kickoff time and network designation for the matchup will be available at a later date. ESPN’s early-season college football schedule will be announced in the coming weeks as conferences and television networks continue to prepare for the college football season.

ESPN Events
ESPN Events, a division of ESPN, owns and operates a portfolio of 35 collegiate sporting events nationwide. The roster includes four early-season college football games, 17 college bowl games, 11 college basketball events, a college softball event and two college award shows, which accounts for approximately 400 hours of live programming, reaches nearly 64 million viewers and attracts over 800,000 attendees each year. With satellite offices in more than 10 markets across the country, ESPN Events builds relationships with conferences, schools and local communities, as well as providing unique experiences for teams and fans.

For more information, visit the official websiteFacebookTwitter or YouTube pages.

-30-

Media contacts

ESPN Events: Anna Negron at anna.m.negron@espn.com or 860-256-1757
Texas Kickoff: Allie LeClair at Allie.LeClair@houstontexans.com or 832-919-0655

Team Alert

JACK INGRAM TO HEADLINE KARBACH LOVE STREET TEXFEST AT ADVOCARE TEXAS KICKOFF, FRIDAY, SEPT. 13

HOUSTON – The AdvoCare Texas Kickoff announced today that the gameday will get underway with a special performance by Texas country music star Jack Ingram at the Karbach Love Street TexFest on Friday, Sept. 13 at NRG Stadium prior the college football showdown between the University of Houston and Washington State University.

Ingram is a highly acclaimed artist, best known for his Indie country music and recognition with young fans. Since 1992, the Texas native has produced a memorable discography of 12 studio albums, over four live albums and numerous singles. The country music star has maintained a strong reputation for his charismatic performances and eclectic sound. His blend of Indie and country is highly favored amongst his dedicated fan base, and other artists recognize his insane work ethic.

Originally born in the Woodlands, Jack Ingram got his start by writing songs and playing local appearances while studying psychology at Southern Methodist University in Dallas in the late 1980s. He then took his talents to Fort Worth, where he played for local bars around Texas Christian University’s campus. During the early 1990s, Ingram toured throughout his home state, opening for Mark Chesnutt and other acts. In 1993, he debuted with his self-titled album Jack Ingram and followed it up with Lonesome Question in 1994. After his first live album, Live at Adair’s in 1996, Ingram re-issued two of his first Indie albums, demonstrating his talents in various genres. The success of these albums allowed him to expand his creativity and drop a few nationally renowned records such as Livin’ or Dyin’, Hey You, and Electric.

The 2000’s was a prominent era for Ingram as he created and released one of his most popular albums in 2005 titled Wherever You Are. The album produced a powerful duo of country hits; its title track Wherever You Are became his first Number One single. The second acclaimed single Love You reached the Top 20. His next two albums each had their own success with songs that ranked in the Top 10 and Top 20 charts. His 2016 album, Midnight Motel, marked a significant milestone for the artist, with it being his first independent soundtrack ever produced. In April of 2019, Ingram put out his 14th album titled Ridin’ High…Again.

The weekend’s festivities will begin Thursday night at 6:30p in Midtown at the Karbach Hopadillo Kickoff Crawl where fans will have the chance to participate in multiple giveaways as they make their way around select bars. The night’s giveaways include AdvoCare Texas Kickoff tickets and swag, passes for a meet and greet with Jack Ingram, pregame sideline passes – all of which can be won through games at each bar. At the end of the night, a final drawing will be held for two 50-yard line AdvoCare Texas Kickoff game tickets at the last bar of the crawl. For a full schedule of stops and activities, visit www.advocaretexaskickoff.com/kickoff-crawl/

On game day, the Karbach Love Street TexFest will kick off the events at NRG Stadium on Friday, Sept. 13 starting at 5:00 p.m. outside the south entrances of NRG Stadium. Ingram will headline the event and is scheduled to hit the stage at 6:15 p.m. following the team arrivals and Spirit Walks.

Karbach Love Street TexFest is a free event open to all 2019 AdvoCare Texas Kickoff ticketholders that features live music, prizes and the teams’ spirit walks into NRG Stadium. The official pregame party for the AdvoCare Texas Kickoff will be held outside the South Entrances to NRG Stadium between the Amegy Bank Gate and Ford Gate. This year’s festivities will include food trucks, games, inflatables in the Kids Zone and drink specials. For more information on the event, visit www.advocaretexaskickoff.com

Following is a detailed schedule of the pre-game events leading up to the 2019 AdvoCare Texas Kickoff:

KARBACH LOVE STREET TEXFEST, FRIDAY, SEPT. 13

WHO:

Musical Performance by Jack Ingram 

WHEN:

 

5:00 p.m. CT Event Opens at NRG Stadium

6:00 p.m. CT, University of Houston Spirit Walk 

6:10 p.m. CT, Washington State Spirit Walk 

6:15 p.m. – 7:45 p.m. CT, Jack Ingram 

WHERE:

Bud Light Plaza and the South Entrances of NRG Stadium 

 

The matchup of the UH Cougars and the #23 WSU Cougars will kick off at 8:15 p.m. CT following the pregame festivities at NRG Stadium. The game will be televised nationally on ESPN and heard locally on Sports Radio 610 (KILT-AM). Tickets remain for the 2019 AdvoCare Texas Kickoff and are available by clicking here or calling (832) 667-2390.

CONTACTS:
Allie LeClair
(832) 667-2050
allie.leclair@houstontexans.com

Brianna Lewis
(832) 667-2035
brianna.lewis@houstontexans.com

###

Press Release

ACADEMY SPORTS + OUTDOORS TEXAS BOWL GRIDIRON LEGENDS CLASS OF 2019 ANNOUNCED

HOUSTON – The Academy Sports + Outdoors Texas Bowl Committee has selected the 2019 Class of Gridiron Legends, the committee announced today. The honorees will be introduced at the 2019 AdvoCare Texas Kickoff game on Sept. 13 and will be inducted into the Gridiron Legends at a special pregame ceremony during the Academy Sports + Outdoors Texas Bowl game at NRG Stadium on Dec. 27.

The class of 2019 features Houston Texans seven-time Pro Bowl and four-time All-Pro wide receiver Andre Johnson, Rice All-American and 2008 Texas Bowl Champion Jarett Dillard, Former UT athletic director and Texas Sports Hall of Fame member DeLoss Dodds, University of Houston All-Time great quarterback David Klingler, Texas A&M All-American and seven-time Pro-Bowl offensive lineman Richmond Webb, and 10-time HISD coach of the year and High School football legend Ray Seals.

Houston Texans seven-time Pro Bowl and four time All-Pro wide receiver Andre Johnson started his career off at Miami Senior High School, where he lettered in football, track and basketball. He was named an All-America selection in his senior year where he caught 31 passes for 908 yards and 15 touchdowns. In his three seasons at the University of Miami, Johnson ended up ranking fifth on the school’s all-time receiving yards list after producing 92 receptions for 1,831 yards and 20 touchdowns. He became the second player in Hurricane history to crack the single-season 1,000-yard receiving barrier in his junior year. As a sophomore, he earned multiple honors and helped Miami win its first national title in 10 years, catching 37 passes for 682 yards and a college career best of 10 touchdowns. In the 2002 Rose Bowl, Andre Johnson was named the Co-Player of the Game when he caught seven passes for 199 yards and two touchdowns. The Houston Texans drafted Johnson as the third overall pick in the 2003 NFL Draft. As a rookie, he started all 16 games and recorded at least one catch in each game. Throughout his 12 seasons with the Texans, Johnson became the team’s all-time leading receiver with 1,012 receptions for 13,597 yards and 64 touchdowns. He ranks ninth on the all-time receptions list and 12th in yards receiving. He is one of three players in modern NFL history to lead the league in receiving in back-to-back years. Johnson averaged an NFL all-time 6.0 receptions per game in his career and 80.5 yards receiving per game ranks second in NFL history. With a list of accolades under his belt, Johnson made seven trips to the Pro Bowl. He is a four-time Houston Texans team MVP, and holds the franchise record for the most starts and games played with 169. Johnson became the second-fastest player to reach 1,000 catches in NFL history, doing so in his 168th career game. He also holds the NFL record with 21 career games with 10 or more receptions and 100 or more yards receiving. Johnson set a standard for the Texans, making numerous records for the young team. In 2017, Andre Johnson made his official retirement and later in that year he became the first-ever inductee into the Texans Ring of Honor. Currently, Andre Johnson acts as the Special Advisor to the Head Coach for the Houston Texans.

Former Rice University All-American, wide receiver Jarett Dillard hails from San Antonio, Texas. There he played at Sam Houston High School as a three-year letterman and starter for the Hurricanes. He was a two-time all-district selection at wide receiver, and added all-area to his honors as a senior. Along with football, Dillard also competed for the Sam Houston basketball and track team. He helped the Hurricanes to the 2003 Class 4A state tournament in basketball, and competed in the 2003 Regional Track Meet in both hurdles events. After being accepted into Rice University and taking a redshirt his freshman year, Dillard came out strong, starting in eight games in his first season. For the next three years, Jarett Dillard re-wrote the Rice record book for wide receivers, passing a number of recognizable candidates to become a finalist for the Biletnikoff Award in 2006. In that same year, Dillard became the first Owl since Charles Torrello in 1997 to be named first-team All-America selection by ESPN.com. He earned second-team status by The Walter Camp Foundation, Associated Press, The Sporting News and SI.com. Dillard broke the NCAA record for consecutive games in a season with 13 games, sharing the mark with Randy Moss and Larry Fitzgerald. Jarett Dillard was named the 2007 Consensus C-USA pick and was honorable mention All-America by Sports Illustrated after leading the Owls with 79 catches for 1,057 yards and 14 touchdowns. He led the C-USA receivers with his 14 touchdowns, along with his average of 7.5 catches per conference game. In 2008, Dillard became Rice’s first Football Writers All-America selection since Buddy Dial in 1958. He also earned All-America mention from CBSSports.com. He became a three-time, first-team consensus All C-USA selection, the first Owl to be a consensus pick for conference honors for three consecutive seasons. Dillard led the NCAA with 19 touchdown catches and became the first receiver in NCAA history to have two, 19-touchdown reception seasons. He became the 10th receiver in NCAA history to top 4,000 yards receiving after his 88-yard effort versus Marshall. In his entire career at Rice, he earned five NCAA receiving records including; most career touchdowns (59), most career touchdowns by a passing duo with quarterback Chase Clement (50). Most career games with a touchdown catch (37), most games with a touchdown catch in a season (13 in 2006), and combined with Clement to earn the Walter Camp foundation National Offensive Players of the Week and C-USA offensive honors. Dillard wrapped up his collegiate career by becoming the 2008 Texas Bowl Champions as Rice defeated Western Michigan in his final game with the Owls.

Dillard was drafted by Jacksonville in the fifth round of the 2009 NFL draft where he spent three seasons with the Jaguars. The accolades didn’t stop when his playing days ended. In 2012, he was a recipient of the Ed Block Courage award. Dillard currently practices law in the state of Texas and is a longtime Academy Sports + Outdoors Texas Bowl volunteer.

Former athletic director for the University of Texas for 32 years, DeLoss Dodds is one of the most accomplished college sports executives in the country, with an athletic career spanning five decades. The Longhorns claimed 14 national titles under his tenure, including the 2005 National Championship in Football. Dodds’ career started after he graduated from Kansas State University in 1959 with a degree in physical education. After spending time in graduate school and in the Army, he became the head track and field coach at K-State in 1963, where he served in that position for 14 years. After guiding the Wildcats to six Big Eight titles and all of his accomplishments with the team, Dodds was inducted into the Drake Relays Coaches Hall of Fame in 1989, the Kansas State Athletic Hall of Fame in 1995 and the U.S. Track Coaches Hall of Fame in 2006. DeLoss Dodds began his career in sports administration by turning a struggling “in-the-red” athletics department into a money-maker in three years as the director of athletics at Kansas State. Prior to UT, he acted as an assistant commissioner to the Big Eight Conference for two years. In 1981, Dodds was hired by the University of Texas to become the school’s sixth athletic director. In his career, he took another struggling program and revived it, overseeing the department’s budget and helping change the face of Texas athletics.  He guided the creation of The Longhorn Foundation in 1986, which raised funds invested in student-athlete scholarships, academic services, sports medicine, facilities and other resources directed at student-athlete development. During his tenure, the Longhorns Athletics program enjoyed some of its most dynamic times. From the fall of 1981 to September 2013, the longhorns claimed 14 National Championships and 108 conference (Southwest and Big 12) titles in nine different sports. With Dodds’ vision for the program, Texas became a national name. The Longhorn’s football run to the BCS National Championship during the 2005 season highlighted one of the most successful periods in UT Athletics history. That fourth title underscored a decade of achievements with at least 10 other victories in nine consecutive seasons. In 2006, Dodds was awarded with the National Football Foundation and the John L. Toner Award for demonstrating his superior administrative abilities. The following year, he was inducted into the Texas Sports Hall of Fame. DeLoss Dodds was honored as the 2011 Athletic Director of the Year at the Sports Business Awards. In October of 2013, Dodds announced his retirement as the Texas Men’s athletic director, and the following month all the way up to the present day, DeLoss Dodds has served as special assistant to the UT President.

University of Houston All-American quarterback David Klingler was at the controls during the Cougars’ record-setting run-n-shoot days of the early 90s. His career started here in Houston at Stratford High School where he shined on the field. His performance at Stratford earned him multiple scholarship opportunities Stanford and Pitt for basketball, while Kansas and Ball State wanted him for both basketball and football. Klingler instead decided to stay close to home and attended the University of Houston on a football scholarship. In the beginning, he studied the nuances of the Cougars run-and-shoot play style while being a back up to 1989 Heisman winner, Andre Ware. During his college career, Klingler made a strong impact on the Cougars from 1988-91, bringing a lot of attraction to the school. In the 1990 season, a lot of weight was put on his shoulders after Andre Ware and then Head Coach Jack Pardee left for the NFL, putting Klingler onto the front line. To the surprise of many, Klingler did better than anticipated, breaking or tying numerous passing records in his tenure. Completing 726 of his 1,262 passes for 9,430 yards and 91 touchdowns, posting multiple school records and even more NCAA records. David Klingler set an impressive 48 NCAA records in his two starting seasons with the Cougars. One of those honors being the NCAA record for touchdown passes in a season with 54 touchdowns in 1990. This record stood unbreakable for 16 years until it was broken in 2006 in the Hawaii Bowl. The 1990 season continued to be outstanding for the quarterback, as Klingler led the Cougars to be ranked No. 3 in college football, the programs highest ever ranking. He racked up multiple awards that season as the winner of the 1990 Sammy Baugh Trophy, and the Southwest Conference Player of the Year. Klingler made a valiant push to win the Heisman Trophy and came out as a finalist. A stand out for the University of Houston, David still ranks in the top ten for career touchdown passes and yards, and currently ranks among All-Time passing leaders at the University of Houston. After his career with the Cougars, David Klingler went on to be drafted as the sixth overall pick by the Cincinnati Bengals in the 1992 NFL Draft.

Former offensive lineman Richmond Webb had an outstanding career at both the collegiate and professional level. Originally, out of Dallas, Webb was a star at Roosevelt High School. He played alongside future NFL players, LB Aaron Wallace and WR Kevin Williams. Initially recruited as a defensive end, Richmond Webb switched over to the offensive side of the ball and became a dominant player at Texas A&M University. During his time as an Aggie, the All-American offensive lineman was a force on the field. He helped the Aggies win two Southwest Conference Championships and was All-SWC in 1989. Webb also received the Aggie Heart Award in the same year. His 13-year NFL career started when the Miami Dolphins selected him as the ninth overall pick in the 1990 NFL Draft. Webb took charge right out the gate, being named NFL Rookie of the Year by The Sporting News in his first season. He also made the Pro-Bowl in his rookie season, which was his first of many. In fact, Webb was invited to seven consecutive Pro-Bowls from 1990 to 1996. A four-time AP All-Pro, Richmond Webb set a team record for 118 consecutive starts and helped the Dolphins make the playoffs in eight of his 11 seasons with the team. He was a key blocker and pass protector for Hall of Fame quarterback, Dan Marino from 1990-99. The success of that 1990 season, led the Dolphins to become the All-Decade Team for that year. After his lengthy tenure with the Dolphins, Webb continued to be a key contributor on the field for the Cincinnati Bengals during the final years of his career. In his time there, the Bengals’ offensive line allowed the fourth-fewest sacks in team history and had the second-best individual rushing performance. Richmond Webb concluded his NFL career by retiring as a Dolphin in 2005. Soon after, Webb was added to the Dolphins Honor Roll in 2006 along with former S Dick Anderson. In 2007, Richmond Webb was inducted into the Texas A&M Hall of Fame and currently ranks no. 16 on the list of the All-Time Greatest Aggies.

Legendary Head Football coach and Athletic Coordinator, Ray Seals has spent nearly the last 50 years as a dominant figure in Houston ISD Athletics. The 10-time HISD Coach of the Year garners an iconic coaching career and has been recognized on the high school, college and professional level. Seals got his start in HISD in 1972 after he was hired as an assistant at Sam Houston. After a few stops at Sterling Aviation High School, Milby High School and James Madison High School, he received his first head-coaching job in 1983 at Milby before taking over the head coaching position at Madison in 1988. For over the next 23 years, Ray Seals built a dynasty at Madison High School, compiling a 212-96 record, along with 21 playoff appearances. As a result of his success on the field, the Prairie View A&M graduate was eventually inducted into several Halls of Honor. These included ones from the Texas High School Coaches Association, the Greater Houston Football Coaches association and HISD. A well-respected figure in football, over 200 of Seals’ players have been awarded scholarships to play at the collegiate level. Another handful more went on to play in the NFL. A few of those notable names spawn under Seals’ coaching include former Tennessee Titans quarterback Vince Young and former Detroit Lions fullback Moran Norris. In 2008, Ray Seals was selected as the NFL High School Coach of the Year. A few years later, Seals was named the inaugural Don Shula NFL Coach of the Year after being nominated by the Houston Texans. In 2011, Ray Seals decided to call an end to his iconic 46-year career. His record at Madison ended at 182-82-1.

The 2019 Academy Sports + Outdoors Texas Bowl will feature teams from the Big 12 and SEC and will kick off at 5:45 p.m. CT on Friday, Dec. 27. The game, which has ranked fifth in bowl game attendance in the country behind only the Rose, Cotton, Sugar and Peach Bowls since 2014, will air nationally on ESPN and ESPN Radio with a local radio broadcast on SportsRadio 610 (KILT-AM).

Tickets remain for the 2019 AdvoCare Texas Kickoff game featuring the University of Houston Cougars and the Washington State Cougars on Friday, September 13 and can be purchased through the website at http://www.advocaretexaskickoff.com/tickets/.

CONTACTS:
Allie LeClair
(832) 667-2050
allie.leclair@houstontexans.com

Brianna Lewis
(832) 667-2035
brianna.lewis@houstontexans.com

Press Release

2019 ADVOCARE TEXAS KICKOFF OPENS MAJOR FOOTBALL WEEKEND IN HOUSTON, FRIDAY, SEPT. 13

Game will kick off at NRG Stadium at 8:15 p.m. CT on ESPN

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Thursday, May 30, 2019

HOUSTON – The 2019 AdvoCare Texas Kickoff featuring Houston vs. Washington State will kick off an outstanding weekend of football on Friday, Sept. 13, at 8:15 p.m. CT. This showdown will be played at NRG Stadium in Houston and will be televised nationally on ESPN.  The game will also be carried nationally on radio by Westwood One affiliates including Sports Radio 610 (KILT-AM) in Houston. 

The Houston Cougars and the Washington State Cougars will meet for the seventh installment of the AdvoCare Texas Kickoff. Washington State leads the all-time series, 2-1, with WSU winning 32-18 in 1959 and defeating Houston in the 1988 Aloha Bowl 24-22 in Hawaii. Houston captured a victory against the Cougars in 1966, winning 21-7.

Earlier this year, the University of Houston welcomed Dana Holgorsen as the head coach. Holgorsen returned to Houston after spending the last eight seasons as the head coach for the West Virginia Mountaineers. Washington State and Head Coach Mike Leach are coming off of a top 10 finish, with a bowl game win under their belts. Leach led the Cougars to a 28-26 victory late last season against the Iowa State Cyclones in the Alamo Bowl.

The AdvoCare Texas Kickoff will be followed by Rice vs. Texas on Saturday, Sept. 14, at NRG Stadium. The weekend will wrap up with the Houston Texans taking on the Jacksonville Jaguars in the Texans first regular-season matchup at home on Sunday, Sept. 15.

The 2019 AdvoCare Texas Kickoff will mark the seventh year of an eight-year agreement between Lone Star Sports & Entertainment and ESPN Events, a subsidiary of ESPN, to bring a top college football game to NRG Stadium

Initial ticket prices will range from $19-125 and may be purchased online at www.ticketmaster.com or by calling 832-667-2390.  Fans can also call 832-667-2390 for suites, group tickets and premium hospitality. For more information, please visit www.AdvoCareTexasKickoff.com.

---

ESPN Events
ESPN Events, a division of ESPN, owns and operates a large portfolio of 32 collegiate sporting events worldwide. The roster includes three Labor Day weekend college football games; FCS opening-weekend game; 15 college bowl games, 10 college basketball events, a college softball event and two college award shows, which accounts for approximately 375-plus hours of live programming, reaches almost 64 million viewers and attracts over 800,000 attendees each year. With satellite offices in Albuquerque, Birmingham, Boca Raton, Boise, Dallas-Fort Worth, Honolulu, Las Vegas, Montgomery and St. Petersburg, ESPN Events builds relationships with conferences, schools and local communities, as well as providing unique experiences for teams and fans.

ESPN Events also manages the Big 12 Corporate Partner Program.

Collegiate Football
Academy Sports + Outdoors Texas Bowl (Houston); AdvoCare Texas Kickoff (Houston); Air Force Reserve Celebration Bowl (Atlanta); Bad Boy Mowers Gasparilla Bowl (Tampa, Fla.); Cheribundi Boca Raton Bowl (Florida); Camping World Kickoff (Orlando, Fla.); Famous Idaho Potato Bowl (Boise); DXL Frisco Bowl (Texas); Guardian Credit Union FCS Kickoff (Montgomery, Ala.); Jared Birmingham Bowl (Alabama);Lockheed Martin Armed Forces Bowl (Dallas-Fort Worth); Makers Wanted Bahamas Bowl (Nassau); Myrtle Beach Bowl (South Carolina); MEAC/SWAC Challenge (Atlanta); Mitsubishi Motors Las Vegas Bowl (Nevada); New Mexico Bowl (Albuquerque); Raycom Media Camellia Bowl (Montgomery, Ala.); SERVPRO First Responder Bowl (Dallas-Fort Worth); SoFi Hawai’i Bowl (Honolulu); The Home Depot College Football Awards (Atlanta)

Collegiate Basketball

AdvoCare Invitational (Walt Disney World Resort near Orlando, Fla.); Armed Forces Classic (Fort Bliss, Texas); Charleston Classic (South Carolina); College Basketball Awards Presented by Wendy’s (Los Angeles); Hawaiian Airlines Diamond Head Classic (Honolulu); Jimmy V Men’s Classic presented by Corona (New York City); Jimmy V Women’s Classic Presented by Corona (South Bend, Ind.); Myrtle Beach Invitational (Conway, S.C.); NIT Season Tip-Off (Brooklyn, N.Y.); State Farm Champions Classic (Indianapolis) and Wooden Legacy (Fullerton, Calif.)

Collegiate Softball

St. Pete/Clearwater Elite Invitational (Clearwater, Fla.)

---

For more information, visit the official website, Facebook, Twitter or YouTube pages.

Press Release

UNIVERSITY OF HOUSTON & WASHINGTON STATE UNIVERSITY TO PLAY IN THE 2019 ADVOCARE TEXAS KICKOFF GAME AT NRG STADIUM

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Tuesday, Nov. 20, 2018

The University of Houston Cougars and the Washington State Cougars will meet for the seventh installment of the AdvoCare Texas Kickoff on Friday, Sept. 13 at NRG Stadium in Houston. The game will be broadcast on ESPN.  The two teams will meet for the first time since the 1988 Aloha Bowl when Washington State won 24-22.

“The AdvoCare Texas Kickoff has become a premier early season college football tradition and the 2019 event is no exception,” said General Manager of Lone Star Sports & Entertainment David Fletcher. “We look forward to welcoming the University of Houston Cougars, the Washington State Cougars and their respective passionate fan bases to NRG Stadium for this special Friday night lights edition of the AdvoCare Texas Kickoff.” 

Washington State leads the all-time series, 2-1, with WSU winning 32-18 in 1959 and Houston capturing a 21-7 victory in 1966. Both of these games took place in Houston.

“We are very pleased to showcase these two outstanding programs in the early season 2019 AdvoCare Texas Kickoff game,” said Pete Derzis, ESPN senior vice president of college sports programming and ESPN events. “Both schools have dedicated alumni and engaged fan bases and the expectation is a great crowd on hand for the Kickoff matchup.”

This season, Houston is 8-3 overall, with a 5-2 conference record. The Cougars are bowl eligible for the sixth straight season, the best streak in program history. With one of the nation's top offenses, Houston ranks second nationally in total offense with 546.1 yards per game while ranking fourth nationally in scoring offense with 47.8 points per game. It has three games this season over 600 yards of total offense.

University of Houston Head Coach Major Applewhite is in his second season after finishing the 2017 season with a record of 7-6 including an appearance in the Hawaii Bowl. Applewhite, who has 14 years of coaching experience including seven as an offensive coordinator, has coached in 12 bowl games, four of which have been the New Year’s Six variety including the 2010 BCS National Championship. Applewhite’s first season as a head coach started off with adversity as Houston was hit with one of the nation’s most devastating natural disasters in Hurricane Harvey. Applewhite rallied his team to a seven-win season and finishing second in The American West.

“We are honored to receive the invitation to participate in the AdvoCare Texas Kickoff,” said University of Houston Vice President for Athletics Chris Pezman. “We have fond memories from our last action in the event and look forward to creating more in front of our hometown fans in a primetime nationally-televised game.”

Washington State ranks seventh in the Associated Press Top-25 with a 10-1 overall record and a 7-1 record in conference play. The Cougars are 10-1 for the first time since 1997 which matches the program record for wins. The team leads the nation in passing offense with 400.5 yards per.

Washington State Head Coach Mike Leach is in his seventh season and finished the 2017 season with a 9-4 record. In 2015, Leach was named the Pac-12 Co-Coach of the Year. Under his leadership, WSU has had three nine-win seasons in the past four years, one including the 2018 season where at least two games remain. He has guided the Cougars to four bowl appearances in his first six years, a first for a WSU head coach, and the only head coach to lead WSU to three-straight bowl games. The Cougars opened the 2017 season with six-straight victories and posted wins over No. 5 USC and No. 18 Stanford. Once again, the Cougar offense ranked among the national leaders in passing offense (2nd) while the defense ranked in the national top 25 in seven categories.

“We are excited to face a quality program such as the Houston Cougars next year in the AdvoCare Texas Kickoff Game at NRG Stadium,” said Washington State Director of Athletic Pat Chun. “It provides our fan base the opportunity to see a tremendous nonconference opponent in a great part of the country, while giving our student-athletes the chance to play in a world-class stadium.”

The game will mark the seventh year of the partnership between Lone Star Sports & Entertainment and ESPN Events, a division of ESPN, to bring a top early season college football events to NRG Stadium each year.

A special presale for advance tickets will start today, Tuesday, Nov. 20 and fans can visit www.advocaretexaskickoff.com for more information. Initial ticket prices will range from $30-125.  Fans can also call 832-667-2390 for more information on suites, group tickets and premium hospitality.

 

Lone Star Sports & Entertainment

Lone Star Sports & Entertainment is an event management company founded in 2003 that is closely affiliated with the NFL’s Houston Texans. Since its founding, LSSE has established itself as the leading sports event promoter in Houston with events that create a direct annual economic impact of more than $100 million for the City of Houston. In addition to the Academy Sports + Outdoors Texas Bowl and the AdvoCare Texas Kickoff, LSSE has emerged as a premier host for international soccer matches, including the 2017 Manchester Derby, Copa America Centenario, the 2010 MLS All-Star Game featuring Manchester United, the 2006 FC Barcelona U.S. tour, 2003 and 2008 matches between the United States and Mexico, and the 2005, 2007, 2009, 2011 and 2019 CONCACAF Gold Cups.  LSSE has also reinvigorated the Battle of the Piney Woods presented by H-E-B rivalry between Stephen F. Austin and Sam Houston State and has promoted major concerts featuring Beyoncé, Taylor Swift and country superstars including George Strait and Kenny Chesney.

ESPN Events
ESPN Events, a division of ESPN, owns and operates a large portfolio of 32 collegiate sporting events worldwide. The roster includes three Labor Day weekend college football games; FCS opening-weekend game; 15 college bowl games, 10 college basketball events, a college softball event and two college award shows, which accounts for approximately 375-plus hours of live programming, reaches almost 64 million viewers and attracts over 800,000 attendees each year. With satellite offices in Albuquerque, Birmingham, Boca Raton, Boise, Dallas-Fort Worth, Honolulu, Las Vegas, Montgomery and St. Petersburg, ESPN Events builds relationships with conferences, schools and local communities, as well as providing unique experiences for teams and fans.

ESPN Events also manages the Big 12 Corporate Partner Program.


Collegiate Football

Academy Sports + Outdoors Texas Bowl (Houston); AdvoCare Texas Kickoff (Houston); Air Force Reserve Celebration Bowl (Atlanta); Bad Boy Mowers Gasparilla Bowl (Tampa, Fla.); Birmingham Bowl (Alabama); Cheribundi Tart Cherry Boca Raton Bowl (Florida); Camping World Kickoff (Orlando, Fla.); Famous Idaho Potato Bowl (Boise); DXL Frisco Bowl (Texas); Guardian Credit Union FCS Kickoff (Montgomery, Ala.); Hawai’i Bowl (Honolulu); Lockheed Martin Armed Forces Bowl (Dallas-Fort Worth); Makers Wanted Bahamas Bowl (Nassau); Myrtle Beach Bowl (South Carolina); MEAC/SWAC Challenge (Atlanta); Mitsubishi Motors Las Vegas Bowl (Nevada); New Mexico Bowl (Albuquerque); Raycom Media Camellia Bowl (Montgomery, Ala.); SERVPRO First Responder Bowl (Dallas-Fort Worth);  The Home Depot College Football Awards (Atlanta)

Collegiate Basketball

AdvoCare Invitational (Walt Disney World Resort near Orlando, Fla.); Armed Forces Classic (Fort Bliss, Texas); Charleston Classic (South Carolina); College Basketball Awards Presented by Wendy’s (Los Angeles); Hawaiian Airlines Diamond Head Classic (Honolulu); Jimmy V Men’s Classic presented by Corona (New York City); Jimmy V Women’s Classic Presented by Corona (South Bend, Ind.); Myrtle Beach Invitational (Conway, S.C.); NIT Season Tip-Off (Brooklyn, N.Y.); State Farm Champions Classic (Indianapolis) and Wooden Legacy (Fullerton, Calif.)


Collegiate Softball

St. Pete/Clearwater Elite Invitational (Clearwater, Fla.)

For more information, visit the official website, Facebook, Twitter or YouTube pages.

 -30-

 Media Contacts:   

AdvoCare Texas Kickoff: Allie LeClair at 832-667-2050; allie.leclair@houstontexans.com
ESPN Events: Anna Negron at 860-766-2233; anna.m.negron@espn.com

Press Release

DAVE CAMPBELL’S TEXAS FOOTBALL & ACADEMY SPORTS + OUTDOORS TEXAS BOWL ANNOUNCE 2018 MR. TEXAS FOOTBALL WATCH LIST

FOR PLANNING PURPOSES

Wednesday, August 29, 2018

HOUSTON – Dave Campbell’s Texas Football, the leading publication for all things football in Texas, and the Academy Sports + Outdoors Texas Bowl proudly announce the 100-player Watch List for the Mr. Texas Football High School Player of the Year Award presented by Wells Fargo. The voters, when appropriate, will add players to the watch list.

Mr. Texas Football presented by Wells Fargo annually recognizes the most outstanding high school football player in the state of Texas. Each week, fans are given a chance to vote for the player of the week on www.texasfootball.com. At the end of the high school football season, 10 finalists will be named. Fans can then cast their vote as to who should be named Mr. Texas Football. The winner of the 2018 Mr. Texas Football Award presented by Wells Fargo will be announced prior to the 2018 Academy Sports + Outdoors Texas Bowl, which will be played on Thursday, Dec. 27 at NRG Stadium in Houston.  

Current players of this year’s watch list include:

  • WR Garrett Wilson of Lake Travis
  • DL Demarvin Leal of Converse Judson
  • RB Deondrick Glass of Katy
  • ATH Jalen Catalon of Mansfield Legacy
  • RB Deion Hankins of El Paso Parkland
  • OL Javonne Shephard of Houston North Forest
  • RB Daimarqua Foster of Wichita Falls Hirschi
  • QB Roschon Johnson of Port Neches-Groves
  • QB Luke Latimer of Childress
  • QB Grant Gunnell of Houston St. Pius X

Former winners of the award include 2012 Heisman Trophy winner Johnny Manziel (2010 winner, Kerrville Tivy), Oklahoma quarterback Kyler Murray (2013 and 2014 winner, Allen) former Texas Longhorns running back Johnathan Gray (2011 winner, Aledo), Tampa Bay Buccaneers running back Jacquizz Rodgers (2007 winner, Lamar Consolidated) and Carolina Panthers quarterback Garrett Gilbert (2008 winner, Lake Travis). Oklahoma State freshman quarterback Spencer Sanders took home the award in 2017.

The 2018 Academy Sports + Outdoors Texas Bowl will once again feature a matchup between Big 12 and SEC opponents. The 2017 Texas Bowl, which was among the top-5 most-attended bowls in the country for the fourth consecutive year, featured the Texas Longhorns, representing the Big 12 Conference, and the Missouri Tigers, representing the SEC. The Longhorns defeated the Tigers 33-16 behind a virtuoso performance by the Horns defense. Overall, the Academy Sports + Outdoors Texas Bowl has ranked fourth in attendance since 2014, trailing only the Rose, Cotton and Peach Bowls in that time. 

For more information on the Mr. Texas Football Award, visit http://www.academytexasbowl.com/ or www.texasfootball.com.

About the Academy Sports + Outdoors Texas Bowl

The Academy Sports + Outdoors Texas Bowl is owned and operated by ESPN Events, a subsidiary of ESPN, and managed locally by Lone Star Sports & Entertainment. The Bowl will showcase teams from the Big 12 and the SEC, two of the country’s premier conferences, for the next three years. The Academy Sports + Outdoors Texas Bowl has been a tremendous success both on and off the field over its first 12 years as it is the 4th most-attended bowl in the country since 2014. The bowl generates nearly $50 million annually for the Houston economy and has donated more than $1,200,000 in financial support and millions more in promotional support to DePelchin Children’s Center, the bowl’s official charitable beneficiary.

About Dave Campbell’s Texas Football:

For nearly 60 years, Dave Campbell’s Texas Football has been “the bible” to millions of football fans across the Lone Star State. The annual summer edition of the magazine remains a rite of passage for all Texans, previewing every football team in the state — from the rabid world of Texas high school football, through the college ranks, and into the Dallas Cowboys and the Houston Texans. Over the course of six decades, Dave Campbell’s Texas Football remains the undisputed leader in Texas high school football, Texas college football and more.

TexasFootball.com is the online home of Dave Campbell’s Texas Football, covering high school football, college football and recruiting all across the Lone Star State. From thought-provoking commentary to videos to podcasts to its daily live show, nobody covers football in Texas like TexasFootball.com.

###

Press Release

FORMER SAINTS RB, OLE MISS ALUM DEUCE MCALLISTER AND FIVE-TIME NFL PRO BOWL AND FOUR-TIME NFL ALL-PRO HONOREE, TEXAS TECH ALUM WES WELKER TO SERVE AS HONORARY CAPTAINS AT ADVOCARE TEXAS KICKOFF GAME

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Monday, Aug. 27, 2018

HOUSTON – Texas Tech University and University of Mississippi will have two of their most renowned alumni serve as honorary captains when the two schools face off in the 2018 AdvoCare Texas Kickoff at NRG Stadium on Saturday, Sept. 1. Former Ole Miss running back Deuce McAllister and former Texas Tech wide receiver and running back Wes Welker will represent their schools at midfield prior to kickoff at 11 a.m. CT.

Deuce McAllister is the only player in the history of Ole Miss Football to record three seasons with over 1,000 all-purpose yards. He finished his college career as the programs leading rusher and touchdown scorer with 3,060 yards and 41 touchdowns. He was named to the All-Southeastern Conference twice in 1999 and 2000. During the 2001 Draft, McAllister was the 23rd over-all draft pick by the New Orleans Saints. He went on to rush for over 1,000 yards in three straight seasons for the Saints, which was a first in the history of the organization. Throughout his 10 years with the organization, two-time Pro Bowl selection played in 97 games, had 1,429 rush attempts for 6,096 yards, scored 55 touchdowns and completed 234 receptions for 1,720 yards. McAllister set the all-time rushing touchdown record for the Saints in 2008 and he holds the all-time New Orleans Saints record for most career rushing yards and touchdowns.

Wes Welker played college football at Texas Tech, where he totaled 259 receptions for 3,069 yards and 21 touchdowns. Welker also ran the ball 79 carries for 559 yards and two touchdowns. He started nearly every game as a Red Raider, left as a leading receiver in school history, was named first-team All-Big 12 in 2002 and ‘03 and was one of the top punt returners in NCAA history. In 2003, he was recognized for his talent and was honored with the Mosi Tatupu Award as the College Football Special Teams Player of the Year. Welker was signed by the San Diego Chargers as an undrafted free agent in 2004. He also played for the Dolphins, Patriots, Broncos and the Rams. After six seasons in New England, Welker holds the second all-time receiving record for the Patriots, having been targeted 926 times with 672 receptions. He totaled 7,459 yards and 37 touchdowns and holds the fourth highest single-season reception totals in Patriots’ history. In week 7 in 2014 with the Broncos, Welker passed Rod Smith for the most receptions by an undrafted player in NFL history. During his 12 seasons in the NFL, Welker had three Super Bowl appearances, five consecutive NFL Pro Bowl honors and four NFL All-Pro honors. He finished with 903 receptions for 9,924 yards and 50 touchdowns.

Following is a detailed schedule of the events leading up to the AdvoCare Texas Kickoff Game:

KARBACH HOPADILLO KICKOFF CRAWL, FRIDAY, AUG. 31

WHO:

The official kickoff event with school cheerleaders, mascots and college football legends participating in full night of activities along with a live broadcast on Sports Radio 610

WHEN:

7 p.m. – 10:30 p.m. CT

WHERE:

Various midtown establishments starting at Front Porch Pub at 7 p.m. including Christian’s Tailgate, The Dogwood, Pub Fiction and Little Woodrow’s; fans must be age 21 and over to attend

             

KARBACH LOVE STREET TEXFEST, SATURDAY, SEPT. 1

WHO:

Musical Performance by Sam Riggs

WHEN:

 

8 a.m. – 11 a.m. CT

8:45 a.m. CT, Texas Tech Spirit Walk

9:00 a.m. CT, Ole Miss Spirit Walk

9:05 a.m. – 10:35 a.m., Sam Riggs

WHERE:

Bud Light Plaza and the South Entrances of NRG Stadium

 

Tickets are still available. Please note that the NFL Clear Bag Policy will be in effect. For more information, visit www.advocaretexaskickoff.com. The game will be televised nationally on ESPN and heard locally on SportsRadio 610 (KILT-AM).

 

CONTACTS:

Allie LeClair
(832) 667-2050
allie.leclair@houstontexans.com

Stephanie Ramsey
(832) 667-2035
stephanie.ramsey@houstontexans.com

###

Press Release

SAM RIGGS TO HEADLINE KARBACH LOVE STREET TEXFEST AT ADVOCARE TEXAS KICKOFF

FOR PLANNING PURPOSES

Tuesday, August 14, 2018

HOUSTON – The AdvoCare Texas Kickoff announced today the game day will get underway with a performance by Texas rock-infused, country artist, Sam Riggs at the Karbach Love Street TexFest on Saturday, Sept. 1.

The artist, originating from St. Cloud, Florida, has created two albums and two EPs (extended play record) on his own dime since 2010. Riggs’ last album – the 2016 release Breathless – debuted at No. 12 on the Billboard Country Albums chart.

Riggs’ passion for music began at a young age when his mother would play the guitar for him and his brothers before bed, and solidified after attending a Garth Brooks concert with his father. Not long after high school ended, Riggs headed to the Lone Star State to pursue his dreams. The artist picked up a welding job to fund himself and enrolled himself at Austin Community College, where he took a songwriting course. With the help of his professor, he realized he needed to be out there doing it for himself.

Riggs sold his welding equipment, his truck and invested the money to make his second EP. Since then, he has racked up 2.2 million streams on Spotify and a number of his singles hit the upper levels of the Texas charts, including the ultra-country “Hold On A Let Go,” the thumping concert re-creation “High On A Country Song” and his vulnerable “Second Hand Smoke.” To top it off, Riggs picked up the Texas Regional Radio Award in 2016 for Top New Male Vocalist.

The weekend’s festivities will begin Friday night in Midtown at the Karbach Hopadillo Kickoff Crawl on Friday, August 31 where attendees will have the chance to participate in multiple giveaways as they make their way around select bars in Midtown. The night’s giveaways include AdvoCare Texas Kickoff tickets and swag, passes for a meet and greet with Sam Riggs, pregame sideline passes – all of which can be won through games at each bar. At the end of the night, a final drawing for two 50-yard line AdvoCare Texas Kickoff game tickets at the last bar of the crawl. Sports Radio 610 will be broadcasting live from Little Woodrow’s from 7 p.m. – 11 p.m. CT.

On game day, Karbach Love Street TexFest will kick off the events at NRG Stadium on Saturday, Sept. 1 starting at 8:00 a.m. CT outside the south entrances of NRG Stadium. The event is headlined by Sam Riggs, who will hit the stage at 9:05 a.m. CT following the team arrivals and Spirit Walks.

Karbach Love Street TexFest is a free event open to all 2018 AdvoCare Texas Kickoff ticketholders that features live music, prizes and the teams’ spirit walks into NRG Stadium. The official pregame party for the AdvoCare Texas Kickoff will be held outside the South Entrances to NRG Stadium between the Amegy Bank Gate and Ford Gate. This year’s festivities will include food trucks, games, inflatables in the Kids Zone, drink specials and pet adoption from the SPCA Houston by Papa’s Pets. For more information on the event, visit www.advocaretexaskickoff.com

Following is a detailed schedule of the events leading up to the AdvoCare Texas Kickoff game:

KARBACH LOVE STREET TEXFEST, SATURDAY, SEPTEMBER 1

WHO:

Musical Performance by Sam Riggs

WHEN: 

8 a.m. – 11 a.m. CT
8:45 a.m. CT, Texas Tech Spirit Walk
9:00 a.m. CT, Ole Miss Spirit Walk
9:05 a.m. – 10:35 a.m., Sam Riggs

WHERE:

Bud Light Plaza and the South Entrances of NRG Stadium

 

The matchup of the Red Raiders and the Rebels will kick off at 11 a.m. CT following the pregame festivities at NRG Stadium. The game will be televised nationally on ESPN and heard locally on Sports Radio 610 (KILT-AM). Tickets remain for the 2018 AdvoCare Texas Kickoff and are available by clicking here or calling (832) 667-2390.  

CONTACTS:
Allie LeClair
(832) 667-2050
allie.leclair@houstontexans.com

Stephanie Ramsey
(832) 667-2035
stephanie.ramsey@houstontexans.com

###