The holiday weekend has thrown everything off and I've been on the road more often than not these past couple of days, but I finally am able to get this posted up. The guys over at Texas A&M's SB Nation blog Good Bull Hunting took some time out of their busy holiday to answer some questions for me, and I gotta say I'm looking forward to interacting with them again. Great stuff.
1. Your school is known for having somewhere in the range of one billion traditions. Pick one of the most beloved and tell us a little bit about it.
I'm going to put on my serious hat for a minute and talk about Aggie Muster. My description couldn't do it justice, but it's basically when Aggies gather annually to remember those who have passed away in the last year. I was in school when my great-uncle (1944 A&M graduate) passed away and attended the campus Muster, and it was really moving. Most local and regional Aggie clubs hold the ceremony on the same day each year.
2. What has Johnny Manziel meant for Texas A&M? It seems like with the move to the SEC, the timing couldn't have been more perfect in landing a player like that.
You hit the nail on the head. This was a perfect storm of a changing of the guard with regards to coaching, a shift in marketing strategy, and the unexpected emergence of one of the most legendary football players we've ever had. You couldn't possibly overstate how much he's meant for our university. His playing style embodies our attitude regarding the conference move: we're just going to do our thing.
3. If Texas offered to renew the football series effective next season, would Aggie fans want to start that back up?
I think it's about a 50-50 split right now, but I can see the bitterness fading over time and a shift towards renewing the game in the next 5-10 years. Having grown up in a family with graduates of both schools, I miss it.
4. Will Sumlin be back next year?
YES. Nothing to see here. Move along. But to address the question, I think he wants to accomplish more at A&M before he takes the next step. He's made a big splash in two years, but I think he might stick around for a few more to get his system fully running and try for a run at an SEC title.
(Obviously I asked them this before today, and it looks like they were right about this one.)
5. How do you see the game this weekend playing out?
I honestly don't know. It depends on which Aggie team shows up. Does Johnny struggle again, or is he intensely focused on redeeming himself? How will our O-line handle your great D-line? I'm hoping to see a close game, which will probably mean both teams are in the forties and the game decided by a field goal or so. It will be interesting to see how this team reacts coming off the worst loss of the Sumlin era.