Howdy! My name is Mason Riley Hines, a current student at Texas A&M. I’m sure there are some of you who read that sentence and clicked off this page. To those of you that want to hear and read a little more, I’m glad you chose to stay.
Introducing myself a little more, I grew up in a small town in Central Texas that plays six-man football, I’ve followed college and pro sports since I could read, and if I had to pick a favorite sport, it would be football, with baseball a close second. My dream in life is to use my journalism degree to the fullest extent, whether through articles like this, some corporate writing gig, or producing my own content in the future.
For now, I’m more than happy to be a part of the Walk-On Redshirt team, and wanted to bring you my own thoughts regarding college football conference realignment.
About an hour before I sat down to write this, the Universities of Texas and Oklahoma officially announced their intent to not renew media contracts with the Big 12 Conference and explore other options, particularly the SEC. I know that as an Aggie, there are people who expect me to have some insane “this is bogus” reaction, but that’s not the case at all. In my personal opinion, after a few days of toying with the idea, this move was inevitable, and will change the NCAA forever. It’s also a move that should excite the masses.
The inevitably of the move comes from what the Big 12 had become, a laughing stock on the national stage. Being the only “Power 5” conference to have never won a College Football Playoff Semifinal game, despite four straight chances by Oklahoma, certainly had weight. The conference deterioration had an effect on the recruiting trail as well, when Texas A&M used their “we’re in the SEC” tagline to win a few recruiting battles over in-state foes.
Overall this decision is one that as a college football fan, you shouldn’t be able to hate. Who cares about Texas being a bully in the 2010s? If they want to join a conference that consistently puts a team at the top, let them. Embrace the competition. Show up and show out. If I’m a Texas A&M fan, and I am, then you should be ecstatic to play these teams again. This is the ultimate chance to prove on the field that you do belong at the adult table. It’s an opportunity for fans of all these teams to finally quit bickering on Twitter, and have some real results to tout against each other. Thanksgiving will have its spark back, OU versus SEC teams every week will be loads of fun, and above all, no conference will be the same. Let the mayhem begin.