July 14, 2014
WACO, Texas -
Multi-platinum singer/guitarist and "American Idol" winner Phillip Phillips will headline Baylor University's annual Traditions Rally on Thursday, Aug. 28, which will begin a weekend of inaugural events as the defending Big 12 Champion Baylor Bears open up the University's new $260 million on-campus McLane Stadium.
The Traditions Rally is a free, community-wide celebration that will give everyone an advance opportunity to celebrate the upcoming season and get a look at the new stadium before the Bears kick off the much-anticipated 2014 Baylor football season against SMU at 6:30 p.m. Sunday, Aug. 31. The Thursday Traditions Rally will include a Baylor football pep rally with the Golden Wave Marching Band, spirit squads and members of the Bears' 2014 football team, Phillips in concert and a fireworks show over the river to close out the celebration.
"Given the strong collaborative effort that has made McLane Stadium possible, it is only fitting that the opening event in the new stadium will be a celebration that brings the entire community together," said Kevin P. Jackson, Ph.D., vice president for student life at Baylor.
"McLane Stadium's opening weekend will bring Baylor and Waco together for a sensational celebration," said Ian McCaw, vice president and Athletics Director at Baylor. "We are grateful for our campus and community partners working together to build exciting programming for Central Texas and all of Baylor Nation to enjoy."
Doors to the free event will open at 5:30 p.m. The pep rally will begin at 7:30 p.m. inside McLane Stadium, followed by Phillips taking the stage around 8:15 p.m. A fireworks show across the river will close the night's festivities.
Free event parking will be available at McLane Stadium, as well as the Ferrell Center and the Dutton Avenue Parking Facility on the Baylor campus.
The concert by Phillips will be the first stop on his 35-city tour to promote his new album, "Behind the Light." Following his "American Idol" season 11, Phillips released one of the biggest singles of 2012, the quadruple-platinum "Home," which announced Phillip Phillips as a singer/guitarist of both rare authenticity and massive pop appeal.
Centering on the American Idol season 11 winner's rich, raspy vocals and masterful guitar skills, "Home" served as the lead single from the platinum-selling "The World from the Side of the Moon" (19 Entertainment/Interscope Records). Phillips's widely acclaimed debut also featured the platinum single "Gone, Gone, Gone" and the Phillips' penned "Where We Came From."
Released in May, Phillips's sophomore album "Behind The Light" finds the 23-year-old Georgia native offering up a batch of songs marked by a more ambitious and refined sensibility but still powered by the earthy authenticity that's long shaped his sound. With each song written or co-written by Phillips, "Behind The Light" also showcases the guitar skills he began honing by learning to play at age 14 and recently sharpened by joining Matchbox Twenty and John Mayer on tour and sharing a stage with Bruce Springsteen at the 2013 Rock in Rio festival.
Anticipation is high as Baylor head coach Art Briles enters his seventh season in Waco and his 2014 Baylor squad is ranked in the Top 10 by various national publications. The Bears return 51 lettermen from last year's Big 12 championship team that won a school-record 11 games and played in the Fiesta Bowl, the school's record fourth straight bowl appearance.
With season tickets for the 2014 season sold out, a limited number of single-game tickets for Baylor football will go on sale to the general public on Aug. 6. Tickets can be purchased ONLINE HERE or by calling 254-710-1000. For information on the Baylor Bear Foundation pre-sale, please CLICK HERE.
Located on Interstate 35 along the Brazos River, McLane Stadium is the largest project ever built in Waco and the Central Texas region. The stadium, which will serve as a front door to the University campus as well as a riverside events center for the community, will accommodate more than 45,000 spectators, including 8,000 students. Under a 147,000-square-foot canopy, the stadium is situated on a 93-acre site that features:
the 775-foot-long Sheila and Walter Umphrey Pedestrian Bridge that crosses the Brazos River from the Baylor campus to the stadium site
106' wide x 45' tall (4,770 square feet) video board
Touchdown Alley and tailgating areas
the Baylor Basin with 16 individual boat slips that will allow fans to "sailgate"
the new Clyde Hart Track and Field Stadium
Additional details about the Traditions Rally will be released closer to the event. For more information, contact Baylor's Department of Student Activities at 254-710-2371.