Charlie Strong has spoken his mind in the months since he’s taken over at Texas, and during an interview on Wednesday, Strong made it known exactly how he feels about rekindling the rivalry against Texas A&M.
"You would like to see it happen," Strong told ESPN.com. "At some point it needs to happen. We need to play them."
Since Texas A&M left the Big 12 a few years ago to join the SEC exactly no one with any pull at either Texas or Texas A&M has been keen on mending the bridge between the two schools, at least in a regular season game. In fact, in April, Texas athletic director Steve Patterson all but double-bolted that door by saying Texas would need a “compelling business or branding reason” to play the Aggies.
“I think the reality for us is A&M made a choice they felt was best for them to move to the SEC. That’s great for them,” Patterson said. “They’ve leveraged that well. They get a new football stadium, they had a lot of success with Johnny Manziel and raised a lot of money. For us, I think there has to be a real business or branding case made to play anybody that we play with our football games. Given the way our schedule is constructed, playing Oklahoma every year in Dallas, which essentially means every other year you lose a home game, makes scheduling somewhat complicated for us. So, unless there is a really compelling business or branding reason, I see a hard time renewing that rivalry in football.”
Strong did note that he hadn’t talked with Patterson about this grand idea yet, but as a lover of rekindling old rivalries, we like where Strong’s head is.
As for the other rivalry severed by a defection from the Big 12 to the SEC — Missouri and Kansas — well, that one doesn’t look like it will get restarted anytime soon.
Charlie Weis on playing Missouri: “They chose to leave. They weren’t kicked out. They want their cake & eat it too"— Brett McMurphy (@McMurphyESPN) July 24, 2014
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