LUBBOCK, Texas -- When Montana State and Texas Tech were paired up for Week 1 of the 2019 college football season, it was a bit of a dream matchup for Drew Ingraham.
"It's something that I never thought would happen. College football scheduling is so difficult, just getting two teams with availability, getting them to schedule the matchups, so really, the percentages of this happening are very minimal," Ingraham told MTN Sports last Friday. "It was very much disbelief when I first saw it, but it was a flutter almost. 'Oh my gosh, this is happening.'"
Ingraham, who graduated from Bozeman High School in the 1990s, before attending Boston College and Springfield College, was the only person in attendance at Jones AT&T Stadium who had worked for both the Bobcats and the Red Raiders.
After working briefly at the University of Massachusetts Amherst and Colorado College, Ingraham returned to Bozeman in 2007 to become the associate athletic director for marketing and event operations, a position he held for nearly seven years.
"I was pretty excited about it. It was my first real job where I felt like, 'I'm an assistant AD right now. This is going somewhere,'" Ingraham recalled. "The opportunity to go back to Bozeman, be around friends, my family, who never left Bozeman. My mom and my dad still live in Bozeman, my sister, who went to college back east, is now back in Bozeman and married with two young boys. ... It was a great opportunity to go back there and spend seven great years."
Following his MSU career, Ingraham joined the University of New Mexico athletics staff, working as an assistant athletics director for marketing and revenue generation, then associate AD for marketing and fan engagement. Then another opportunity came calling.
"This business is all about relationships and it's getting to know people, to know opportunities, and people that can help you find those opportunities and then you have to take advantage of the opportunity," he said. "I got to know somebody who got me the opportunity at New Mexico, met a bunch of people that were able to give me the opportunity here in Lubbock, and it was just time where it was a new position they had created. They had never had an associate AD for marketing and communications."
Ingraham has been with Texas Tech since November of 2017, and along with the rest of the marketing and communications team, continues to find new ways to display the Red Raiders' brand, both in Lubbock and beyond.
"In 2007 I was worried about negotiating print ads and making sure we had our content in there, proofing it and sizing it, and now I oversee our social media department and you're looking at how much engagement you're getting, likes and retweets and how is this hitting your social media market," he said. "It has been probably one of the largest evolutions in outreach from a college athletics standpoint."
Ingraham and his staff will be on the field Saturday as Texas Tech (1-0) hosts UTEP at Jones AT&T Stadium.