In Texas, we live, breathe, and sleep high school football. If it were food, it would be our 3 daily meals every single day! Heck, we even bury our dead next to the stadiums so they can continue to watch from beyond the grave.
Non-Texans don’t understand the
obsession passion Texans have for High School Football. I know this first hand from living abroad (outside of Texas). You can imagine my horror the first time I moved out of state and realized that the rest of the world doesn’t really give high school football a second thought. I mean they have no idea what homecoming mums are! I learned that apparently, this is just a Texas tradition.
During our 2016 Road Trip, I knew I had to stop by Ratliff Stadium in Odessa, Texas. After all, it was used for most of the filming of the movie Friday Night Lights which retells the story of the 1988 Odessa Permian High School Football Team.
My only regret is not taking more time to visit the high school and other sites (no worries, we will eventually go back).
If you are wondering, there is a fence that goes along the entire perimeter so you cannot “tour” it. However, if you want to take a look inside, I suggest attending a game during Football season which are Friday evenings (in case you couldn’t figure that out by the name Friday Night Lights lol).
Fun Facts about Ratliff Stadium
Seating Capacity: 19,300 seats, there is an additional 200 “seats” for standing room only, bringing the total capacity to 19,500. Due to recent ADA renovations, the seating capacity is now 17,931 (18,150 if you include standing room only).
It was built in 1982 to the tune of $5.6 million.
In October 2001, USA Today picked Ratliff Stadium as one of the top 10 High School Football Stadiums in the United States.
There are over 4,700 parking spaces.
Games are rebroadcast in the Midland/Odessa market on Sunday afternoons, and sometimes playoff games are televised live.
It has a 50 foot by 27 foot Daktroniks high-definition video replay board which is the largest dedicated high school video replay board in the United States.