Those who've had little luck acquiring tickets to the Red River Shootout might have a better chance this year. New upper deck bowls being added to the Cotton Bowl's end zones will increase the stadium's seating capacity from 76,000 to about 92,000 this year, the highlight of a better than $50 million renovation project expected to be completed by October.
That means on Oklahoma's side of the stadium, 8,000 more tickets will be available; they will be sold to fans based on the Sooner Club's point system. "We pushed the new seats as far forward as possible to maximize fan visibility,” said State Fair of Texas president Errol McKoy. "The end zone seats are really going to be great seats.” The Cotton Bowl also has added new restrooms and concession stands, particularly in the end zones, as well as three new entrance and exit gates to deal with long lines in and out of the stadium. "I think the renovations are going to create a huge positive in people's attitudes about the Cotton Bowl,” McKoy said. "People are going to be amazed with how good the stadium looks. We think it will meet the standards OU and Texas have established for their stadiums in terms of fan amenities. "We did not scrap any cost — everything was done first class.” Despite rumors OU and Texas administrators were considering moving the game to the Dallas Cowboys' new $1 billion stadium under construction in Arlington, a contract extension was signed by both schools last year to keep the Red River Shootout at the Cotton Bowl through 2015.
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Oklahoma and Texas' annual showdown is always a tough ticket, but an increase in the Cotton Bowl's capacity should mean about 8,000 more tickets on the Sooners' side of the stadium. Associated Press