Texas Tech University

Texas Tech President Named Honorary Saddle Tramp

Paul Tubbs

May 9, 2023

Lawrence Schovanec is given his own bell in honor of his long-standing support of the spirit organization.

President Schovanec with Saddle Tramps

The oldest spirit organization on campus has a new member and he works in the President's Office of Texas Tech University.

The Saddle Tramps have made Texas Tech President Lawrence Schovanec an honorary member.

“This means a lot to me,” Schovanec said of receiving his own Saddle Tramp bell. “But it's really all about the students.”

Schovanec is only the fourth president to receive this honor and joins a distinguished list that includes a former governor, deans, coaches, band directors, broadcasters, sponsors and supporters of the program.

The process of selecting honorary members is voted on as an organization and requires a two-thirds majority vote for a candidate to be selected.

President Schovanec with Saddle Tramps

“It was unanimous,” said outgoing Saddle Tramp President Trent Bell. “Over the past several years President Schovanec has been supportive of our organization. He helped us with funding to attend the Texas Bowl, which was an amazing experience. He is always encouraging and goes out of his way to meet and talk to us at events.

“With this being Texas Tech's centennial year, we thought it was fitting we make President Schovanec an honorary Saddle Tramp.”

The Saddle Tramps were started in 1936 by student Arch Lamb to support the athletic teams at Texas Tech. The Saddle Tramps are active keepers of tradition at Texas Tech and support the university through activities that include wrapping the statue of Will Rogers and Soapsuds before every home football game; forming the legendary “Bell Circle” before kickoff; the ringing of Bangin' Bertha at games; ringing the “Victory Bells” at the Administration Building; and serving as active participants in parades as well significant involvement in the Carol of Lights holiday celebration ceremony.

President Schovanec with Saddle Tramps

“This is an honor long overdue for one of the most important and successful president's in the history of the university,” said Saddle Tramp senior sponsor and Vice President of the Texas Tech Alumni Association Chris Snead. “Dr. Schovanec has been a champion and supporter of the Saddle Tramps and this honor is just a small way to express our appreciation.”

The Saddle Tramps along with their counterparts in High Riders have been an active part of the Raider Red mascot program at Texas Tech since the program's inception in 1971.