The City of Austin is unique in that it’s a large city without any professional sports teams. However, that doesn’t mean a sports culture is non-existent in Austin. There are several renowned college teams and minor league teams with quite a loyal following. Here's a look at the top programs you’ll want to follow:
1. UT Longhorns Basketball
As a Division I Intercollegiate men's team, the UT Longhorns compete in the Big 12 conference and have won 27 conference championships. The women's team also competes in the Big 12 Conference and has achieved a lot of success over the years. Both teams play their home games at the Frank Erwin Special Events Center.
Catch the men's game against Oklahoma University on Monday, January 23 or the women's matchup against West Virginia on Sunday, January 29.
2. UT Longhorns Football
UT Football is one of the most highly regarded Division I programs in the NCAA. They were Big 12 conference champions in 2005 and 2010 and won numerous Southwest Conference Championships prior to that. Home games are played at the Darrell K. Royal Texas Memorial Stadium. The season starts up again with a home game against Maryland on September 2!
3. Round Rock Express Baseball
A Pacific Coast Minor League baseball team, the Round Rock Express is affiliated with the Texas Rangers and plays their home games at Dell Diamond. In 2016, they were the sixth most valuable minor team in the US, and they surely have a huge following in the Austin area. Their season starts in April, so be sure to catch one of their home games against rivals Nashville or Iowa.
4. Texas Stars Hockey
The top affiliate for the Dallas Stars, the Texas Stars play at the H-E-B Center in Cedar Park, Texas. They have been based outside Austin since 2009, so their local following is still growing, but home games draw quite a crowd and can get pretty rowdy! Watch them play the Bakersfield Condors on Friday, January 27 or the San Antonio Rampage on Saturday, February 4.
5. Austin Spurs Basketball
The Austin Spurs are an NBA Development League team that also plays at the H-E-B Center in Cedar Park. They were purchased by the San Antonio Spurs in 2014 and currently play under coach Ken McDonald. In 2015, Austin won their conference championship and the division title. They host the Northern Arizona Suns on Thursday, January 26 and the Los Angeles D-Fenders on Sunday, January 29.
6. Austin Huns Rugby
Rugby is a rough-and-tumble sport that has been popular in the UK for years and is starting to gain more of a following in the US. The Austin Huns are a rugby club that competes in the USA Rugby Red River Conference. Home games are played at Huns Field at Nixon Lane. They Huns face off against Dallas Rugby on Saturday, January 21 and the Austin Blacks on Saturday, February 18.
What’s your favorite Austin sports team? Feel free to share it with us in the comments section below!