Big 12: Eric Hyman

Texas athletic director DeLoss Dodds made headlines this week when he reiterated his stance against playing Texas A&M any time in the near future, though he admitted the game would likely happen at some point. Who gets to decide when?

"They're the ones that decided not to play us. We get to decide when we play again. I think that's fair," he said.

Another old Texas A&M rival from the Big 12 has struck a different tune, though. Texas Tech wants to play Texas A&M, and it doesn't sound like it'll be too long before it happens.

"I would think soon,” Texas Tech coach Kliff Kingsbury told the Lubbock Avalanche-Journal of the renewal's timeline. “(Athletic director) Kirby (Hocutt)’s excited about it. I’m excited about it, so hopefully we can come to an agreement and get that thing rolling. I just think it’s a great thing for the state. It’s a great rivalry, a great football game and it would be great for Texas."

He added that he'd "love to be a part of that again."

At last week's Big 12 basketball tournament, Hocutt expressed a desire to resume the series in a meeting with media.

"We would welcome the opportunity to play Texas A&M in every sport," Hocutt told reporters. "It was a fun rivalry, a good rivalry and one in the future that we can begin again."

Texas A&M athletic director Eric Hyman doesn't sound like he's standing in the way of the renewal either.

"We would entertain anything," he told the Dallas Morning News.

It's great to hear talk like that, and just like the Texas series, A&M's rivalry with Texas Tech will be a great game to get renewed. It's not the crown jewel like the Thanksgiving tradition between the state's two biggest football rivals, but it's a step in the right direction for sure.

Texas A&M and Missouri's 2011 exit to the SEC, less than a year after the Big 12 momentarily stabilized with 10 teams, inspired plenty of bad blood across the Big 12, but those feelings shouldn't stop rivalry games that helped make college football great from happening again. Texas Tech isn't Texas A&M's chief rival, but both programs love beating the other, and it can only help marquee rivalries like Texas and Texas A&M and Missouri and Kansas to resume before long.

Kingsbury, who took the head coaching job at Texas Tech after just one season as Texas A&M's offensive coordinator, joked that the Red Raiders should wait to schedule the game until Heisman Trophy winner Johnny Manziel packs his bags and leaves A&M's campus.

The Red Raiders open spring practice on Friday, and Kingsbury met with reporters after throwing out the first pitch -- he says it was a strike -- at Texas Tech's baseball game against Arizona State on Tuesday.

The Journal noted that Hocutt spoke last fall of beefing up the nonconference schedule, but that it wouldn't be a possibility until 2015 of 2016, when the schedule was a bit clearer.

That would be fine with me, but the sooner Texas A&M gets to take the field against its old rivals from the Big 12, the better.

Hope for the Lone Star Showdown?

July, 9, 2012
There's plenty of fault to go around for the end of the Lone Star Showdown. That's a debate for another day.

For now, though, the guard at Texas A&M is changing, and the battle lines have been drawn, so to speak.

New Aggies athletic director made his thoughts clear on the future of the rivalry with Texas.

In an interview with the Bryan-College Station Eagle, Hyman broached how his strategy at South Carolina compared to what he'll do at Texas A&M.
Hyman said it’s too soon to talk about what A&M’s nonconference football scheduling philosophy should be, but added, “First of all, you have to take the SEC.”

At South Carolina, he wanted to play a regional team from the pool of North Carolina State, North Carolina, Virginia or Duke; an instate Football Championship Subdivision team; a lower-tier FBS opponent at home; and the rivalry game against Clemson.

“Across the board, we tried to be balanced,” Hyman said.

He would become a hero if he could get the series with Texas resumed.

“If that’s the right thing to do, then we’ll try to do that,” he said.

Let me help you out: It's the right thing to do.

For now, the ball is in Texas' court. The Longhorns are the ones stonewalling this rivalry right now, but they're also the ones who made it clear that the price of Texas A&M leaving for the SEC would be the state's greatest football rivalry at any level.

The Aggies left anyway. Texas made its stance clear. So did Texas A&M.

The fans of both teams -- and college football -- lost. The sooner that changes, the better.