Despite Texas head coach Charlie Strong saying a few weeks ago that he’d “love to play” rival Texas A&M in the future, athletic director Steve Patterson said getting the Aggies back on the schedule is not a priority right now.
“At some point and time in the future to make some business sense… I don’t know,” Patterson said. “It’s not at the top of my list.”
Since the Aggies left the Big 12 for the SEC in 2011, the two longtime rivals have not squared off on the gridiron. The last game between the two was a Texas 27-25 win on Thanksgiving in 2011. There have been some rumblings in the past few years about potentially rekinding the rivalry, but Patterson doesn’t seem too interested.
“Until there’s a case made that it makes sense to play a game against another school in the state of Texas, I don’t see us focusing on it,” Patterson said.
Instead, Patterson has his sights for Texas extending beyond Austin. He wants to build the Texas Longhorns brand internationally in places like Mexico City, China and even Dubai. Patterson discussed the possibility of playing a football game at Azteca Stadium in Mexico City and the school’s basketball team will play a regular season game in China in 2015.
Could Dubai be next on the agenda? According to Mike Finger of the San Antonio Express-News, Patterson said he is “pondering the idea of sending teams to the Middle East for sporting events in Dubai.”
Texas AD Steve Patterson, citing alums in oil & gas industry, says he's had conversations about sporting events in Dubai.— Mike Finger (@mikefinger) April 1, 2014
Patterson also strongly proclaimed his stance on the issue of student-athletes forming a union. Though, according to the Austin-American Statesman he is ok with “increasing the stipend given to athletes to cover the full cost of tuition,” he is completely against the idea of unionization.
“If you’re a football player coming out of high school that decides you want to go to the pros, go take up your issue with Roger Goodell, the owners and the union,” Patterson said. “That’s your place to go, if you want to go play professional football, if you want to be an employee.
“If you want to go play professional basketball, go to the D-league, knock yourself out, then go into the draft to the NBA. That’s your place if you want to be an employee, if you want to be a professional. This is not your place. This is student-athlete athletics.”
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