State Rep. Larson files bill to revive Texas A&M-Texas football rivalry

The Aggies and Longhorns last met Nov. 24, 2011, Texas A&M's last season in the Big 12. The Longhorns won the game 27-25 at Kyle Field.

In less than a month, students at Texas A&M University will get the chance to voice their thoughts on reinstating the historic rivalry football game against the University of Texas.

The Texas A&M Student Senate voted unanimously Wednesday night to support the inclusion of a question on the next campus-wide opinion poll on Feb. 21.

The question would very directly ask, "Do you support reinstating the Texas A&M University vs. University of Texas rivalry game on our nonconference football schedule?"

Executive Director of Operations for the Student Senate Connor Hull, a junior at A&M, presented the resolution with fellow student Chipper Adams, who was one of the people encouraging Hull to propose the resolution.

"I just think that it was a sign from both the Senate and the student body that we would be open to looking at this game being brought back," Hull said about the unanimous vote.

The resolution comes less than a week after Texas A&M President Michael K. Young met with University of Texas President Gregory L. Fenves for an interview with the Austin American-Statesman, during which both presidents spoke about the rivalry game, among other topics.

"It's a storied rivalry of a hundred years or so. We're supportive," Fenves said of renewing the rivalry.

Young had similar sentiment during the same interview, saying, "Absolutely," noting the school has been in favor of facing off against Texas since A&M left the Big 12 Conference to join the Southeastern Conference.

The last game between the two schools was in 2011.

State Rep. Lyle Larson, a 1981 graduate of A&M from San Antonio, also proposed legislation in November that would require the return of the rivalry game around Thanksgiving.

Though the idea of bringing back the game was on Hull's radar since starting at A&M, he was not originally interested in the idea because of the effort required. However, he got a call from a group of people from the University of Texas, including the student body president and vice president, about gauging student interest.

That, paired with Young's support to the Statesman, was enough to convince Hull to write a resolution that would allow the Senate to get a true understanding of student interest in reviving the game.

"I think it's kind of critical right now that we hold an opinion poll so the students' voices can be heard and just see if they want it back or not," he said.

This will be the first official poll on the topic conducted through the elections process, Hull said. The Senate has conducted smaller polls that showed support for the game, but those have been with about a 1,500-student sample size. The poll on Feb. 21 will allow all 60,000-plus students to weigh in on the subject.

If the votes are in support of bringing back the rivalry game, he said, the Senate then can take those results to the university's administration to show them there is backing from students.

Hull said Texas A&M University System Chancellor John Sharp has asked the Senate do something on a university-wide scale to allow all students to voice their opinions.

"It'll be good to show him something," Hull said.

The ballot will go out Feb. 21 at vote.tamu.edu. Then, Hull will present a second bill, likely during the March 6 meeting, to ratify the results, making them the "official opinion of our body," he said.

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(15) comments

Nunya Bidness

If we never play Texas again in football, it will be too soon for me. I don't miss it a bit. We don't need to play them, we gain nothing by playing them, and there's only a downside for us by playing them. Texas is irrelevant in college football today. By contrast, Clemson, Alabama, Georgia, LSU et al are FAR more relevant in college football. Heck, even Kentucky is more relevant in football today than Texas is. No, never play them again I say.

pragmatist

I guess it depends on what you want. If you simply want a junior NFL and the term “relevant” refers to national rank and size of the athletic department budget, OK.
But, if you want local interest and college pride based on beating traditional rivals, you don’t get that by avoiding opponents in your region of the country. Folks at Bama, Auburn, Tennessee etc still have their traditional rivals. We don’t. And, yes, kicking the tails of those tortilla throwing Red Raiders and dominating our great state was fun. I do miss it.

Justin Boyett

Wrong again. We gain everything by playing them, money, attention and a bigger footprint. Their coach who is Tom Herman is doing an excellent job turning them into a football powerhouse once again, you just haven't been paying attention. Your opinion is irrelevant.

Homer Sapiens

Remind me again whose idea it was that A&M join the SEC?

Justin Boyett

Mister Whipple aka Richard B Loftin.

Nunya Bidness

You would be wrong.....he was told to make it happen, it wasn't his idea.

Justin Boyett

I would be correct. If you knew who it was then you would have posted it but you didn't. Whats that say about you? Not much.

Chris Barnes

Joining the SEC was *absolutely* the right thing. We can have our SEC and still play the t-sips.

pragmatist

Not only do I miss the rivalry with Texas, I miss all the in-state rivalries. While I realize playing in the SEC can generate bigger money for the university, it must be said that playing Vanderbilt, S.C. or almost any SEC team, does not excite or interest me nearly as much as playing another team from inside Texas. How many Ags really and truly care about beating Kentucky or Tennessee compared to beating Texas Tech or Baylor?

Nunya Bidness

Yeah, I sure miss the good old days when a loss was met with chants of "Poor Aggies", and having tortillas thrown at us, or goal posts rammed up in to our section of the stadium. Good times. Can't wait to bring them back.

Justin Boyett

That’s funny, I don’t remember us ever kicking the 💩 out of tech or tu. It was more like the other way around. Do you really want to go back to those days?

RICHARD HENNESSY

You bet, I would care more about beating Kentucky or Tennessee than beating Texas Tech or Baylor or ANY team in a poor conference like the Big 12, including Texas. For me, Texas is irrelevant except for recruiting. I especially value the new rivalries we have, or will have, with Alabama, Auburn and LSU. More on point, I would never want to give up road trips to places like South Carolina, Florida, South Bend and Colorado for a road trip to Austin. I went to one game in Austin and would never go again. I just returned from a Florida bowl game. I had wanted to see a bowl game in Florida for decades. It is interesting to me that the 2011 Texas game was highlighted in this article. The way that game was officiated would never encourage me to want to play Texas again. I prefer a level playing field. Finally, I wonder when those who buy season tickets, and provide the most significant support to the athletic department, will get the same say that the students will get.

pragmatist

By "roadtrip" I did not mean catching a United Airlines flight or driving my 40 foot motor coach over a 4 day weekend. I meant packing a buddy's car and going to the game in Lubbock, Dallas, Austin,etc. THAT is a roadtrip, not a vacation. Wealthy graduates, like you, (good for you) have interests that are not the same as students. Granted, you give more money and pay way more for those season tix than any student, but this goes to the point. What the student wants no long seems to matter. it is what big tv, big donors and big business want. It just makes no sense to be in the same conference as schools that are a 3 hour flight away. And, the more you say you are glad to be out of the Big 12, the more it starts to sound like you are running from the Longhorns and from the Sooners, not to mention Baylor and TCU until just a couple of years ago.
Bravado aside, I hate the horns as much as anyone but running away was not the way to settle the score. Beating them is the answer.
Unless we start playing them in something...anything, they can (and will) always say "Poor Aggies" and they will be right. It is time to man up and put them on the schedule or shut up about it.

RICHARD HENNESSY

From a former student and graduate who is far from wealthy, when the Big 12 was formed, I was hopeful it would be a good conference and that the former Big 8 members would temper the overwhelming influence of Texas. Didn't happen. There is a reason that, not only A&M, but Arkansas, Nebraska, Colorado and Missouri left the Big 12, likely because they wanted no part of Texas anymore. I don't see why we would want to chain ourselves to that anchor again,

Chris Barnes

Nope - the only in-state team I cared about playing is t.u. Don't give a squat about 3rd rate teams like Baylor, Tech, SMU, etc.

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