Faces in the Crowd: Taking a Closer Look at Who Filled DKR-Texas Memorial Stadium

During the summer of 2020, no one knew what the Texas Football season was going to look like—or if there would be a season at all. But as Texas Athletics moved forward with plans to keep the season alive and opened Darrell K Royal-Texas Memorial Stadium up to a maximum of 25 percent capacity, they announced something that lifted many Longhorn spirits: the My Texas Fan Cutouts. 

For $50, fans could submit a photo of themselves, friends, family members, or their pet that would be blown up into a cardboard cutout and placed in the stands. This offered a chance for people who opted out of attending games in-person due to COVID-19 to feel like they were still a part of Texas Football—and make the stadium look a little less lonely on screens at home. Meet a few of Texas’ most dedicated fans.  

Glena Pfennig, BJ ’64, and Jon Pfennig, BA ’64, JD ’67, Life Members 

“We’ve been season ticket holders for 55 years! We live at Longhorn Village and we’re not supposed to do public things right now, so we decided to do the cutouts. We also felt like it was important to donate. We planned out our picture outfits, wondering, do we wear masks or not? Mostly I miss visiting with friends and soaking up BEVO Boulevard. We’ve been doing football for so long.” —Glena  

Ashly Duong, BS ’12, MBA ’17, Long Duong, BS ’11, MBA ’17, Life Members, Izzy Duong, Shipley Duong (clockwise, from top right)

“We had our son Shipley [named after Texas football wide receiver Jordan Shipley] in February. We live in Seattle right now and normally travel back to the games once or twice a year. This year he was supposed to go to his first, but with COVID-19 we decided to opt out of our season tickets. We got the cutouts to make sure he attended his first game.” —Long  

“We actually got to see him on TV during the first game!” —Ashly 

Bryce Seifert, BS ’16  

“This felt like a unique chance to be a part of something that might only happen once. I wanted to do something goofy for the cutout so it would stand out in the crowd of people wearing burnt orange and doing the hook ’em hand sign. I attended most of the games in person while I was a student, and I have tried to make it to one in-person game a season since I’ve graduated. But if it was my choice, no one would be allowed to attend the football games in-person this season, only cutouts. Any desire I have to go to a game in person is completely negated by the risk created by the pandemic. Staying home and watching on TV is just fine for me.”  

George Bennett  

“My dad, George Bennett, passed in August. He was a retired Air Force veteran. I wanted a picture of him at DKR because Texas is the team we watched every weekend. It’s my, my mom’s, and my sister’s favorite team and I knew it would make us happy to see him there. Jonathan Sarver [BA ’11, a friend Bennett met via Twitter] paid for his picture and now paid extra for his picture to be at the Frank Erwin Center for Texas Basketball this season! The response I got to my dad’s cutout was overwhelming. So many people took pictures with him and sent them to me. It was awesome!”—Chris Bennett

Shannon Sweeney, BS ’14, Life Member  

“My parents went to school at UT and I grew up in Austin, so that’s where this starts. I’ve been to every home game for the last 24 years. The second cutouts were offered, I thought it was a way to feel like I had some presence at the stadium for the team I grew up watching. We’re a little less connected right now, but the wins still feel just as great.”  

 
 
 

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