December 16, 2011
Jerry Jones likes to set records. That's neither a newsflash nor a particularly unique development, particularly after Cowboys Stadium's Super Bowl debacle last February that unfolded in part because Jones was dead set on breaking the previous single-game attendance record.
Many had pointed to Saturday as another potential record moment for Cowboys Stadium, with the cavalcade of Texas state title football games to be held on site serving as a potential single-day record draw for total high school football fans in attendance for a game. Those chances increased when perennial power Southlake (Texas) Carroll High earned a spot in the Class 5A Division I state finals.
Clearly, such a crowd -- the current record is 49,953, dating back to a state title game in 1977 -- is precisely what Jones had in mind when he successfully lobbied the University Interscholastic League to host all of its football title games at Cowboys Stadium in a two-day period. Yet, in a twist of irony, Jones' own team may ruin his stadium's chance at a record.
As noted by the Dallas Morning News, the Cowboys are scheduled to play in Tampa Bay on Saturday night, a matchup with playoff indications for the Cowboys and plenty of motivation for viewers to tune in.
That, in turn, might keep away precisely the kind of football fans who might otherwise have served as impromptu walk-up fans which could have pushed Cowboys Stadium's attendance over the top.
It will be intriguing to see exactly how many rabid Texas prep football fans do show up over the course of Saturday. If the games put together a total fan base that comes anywhere near the current record, that might be even more impressive than breaking the record on a day when the Cowboys provided no competition for the event going on in Jerry Jones' own facility.