Texas Tech hosts prestigious barbecue cookoff
By: Emily Wade
Texas Tech University hosted the annual Raider Red Meats BBQ and Ribeye Championship Aug. 25- 26. A total of 48 teams from seven states participated in the annual event. Proceeds from the contest help fund the Raider Red Meats Endowment, which provides scholarships for students in the College of Agricultural Sciences & Natural Resources. The contest is a Texas State Championship event and also is sanctioned through the Kansas City Barbecue Society (KCBS).
According to Tate Corliss, Director of Raider Red Meats in the Department of Animal and Food Sciences, there are very few KCBS events held in Texas, and Texas Tech and Raider Red Meats are proud to be able to host one of them. This is the only KCBS event held at a university.
Adding to the excitement surrounding the Raider Red Meats BBQ and Ribeye Championship is another event called the Raider Rumble. In the Raider Rumble, four nationally known barbecue pitmasters, who have either competed on television or have their own cooking show, go head-to-head in a barbecue cookoff on Friday night prior to the event's sponsor appreciation dinner.
This year's big-name Raider Rumble competitors included Big Moe Cason of Des Moines, Iowa; Junior Urias of Midland; Robert Sierra of New Braunfels; and Chris Chadwick of Mackenzie, Tennessee. Big Moe Cason won for the second year in a row. The judges were State Senator Charles Perry, Chancellor Robert Duncan, Bart Reagor, Terri Furman, Gordon Davis, and Stan Powers.
Corliss said Raider Red Meats enjoys putting on the event and offering a unique entertainment opportunity for the Lubbock community.
"It's a great way to get our students engaged in a different part of agriculture," Corliss said. "We're really excited to have a lot of people in the community involved as well as the students."
Open to the public, the Raider Red Meats BBQ and Ribeye Championship is a family friendly event where onlookers are invited to talk barbecue with pit masters and competitors. They may even get to sample some of their products.
"These guys love to talk barbecue, and it's just a fun event before football starts here at Texas Tech to get everybody ready for the fall tailgating season," Corliss said.
Participating teams had the option to compete in up to five different events that included ribs, brisket, pork, chicken and ribeye steak. A unique aspect of the Raider Red Meats event at Texas Tech is the ribeye steak event, which is not usually included in most of the KCBS events. Certified judges ranked the participants in each category on flavor, tenderness, and appearance. A total of $15,000 in cash and prizes was awarded to the top 10 finishers in each category and to the overall grand prize winner. This year's Grand Champions were Tony and Sheryl Valentine, the new owners of The Outdoor Chef in Lubbock.
The event is a unique opportunity for the public to visit with people from all over the country and learn about how they cook their barbecue and hopefully pick up new techniques or ideas. Styles can differ greatly between states much less between regions in states such as Texas. This annual event, which is held at the Texas Tech Livestock Arena, has gathered much support and hopes to continue to grow in the future.
CONTACT: Erica Irlbeck, Associate Professor, Agricultural Communications, Department of Agricultural Education & Communications, Tech University at (806) 834-6708 or firstname.lastname@example.org
0906NM17 / Video related to the Raider Red Meats BBQ and Ribeye Championship is available here
Editor's Note: Three audio files related to the event may be accessed here:
About The Cookoff
- Agricultural & Applied Economics
- Agricultural Education & Communications
- Animal & Food Sciences
- Landscape Architecture
- Natural Resources Management
- Plant & Soil Science
- Veterinary Science
Editor: Norman Martin
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