The Red River Rivalry is adding some corporate flair.
In a press release from the official website of Texas Athletics, the school announced that, starting in 2014, its annual rivalry game with the University of Oklahoma will be known as the AT&T Red River Rivalry and that it will also be updated with a new game logo and team marks.
Said Texas athletic director Steve Patterson:
As a University of Texas alumnus I have long enjoyed the Texas-Oklahoma series and the great tradition it represents for Texas and Oklahoma fans. We look forward to working with AT&T representatives and the University of Oklahoma to generate excitement for the new name and brand, and continuing our relationships with the State Fair of Texas.
Oklahoma athletic director Joe Castiglione gave a statement as well:
The Oklahoma-Texas game played annually at the Cotton Bowl is one of the grandest traditions in all of college football. We will continue striving to make this contest a truly memorable experience for the student-athletes and fans of both the University of Oklahoma and The University of Texas amidst the unique and colorful atmosphere of the State Fair of Texas.
This year's meeting will be the 109th between Texas and Oklahoma. Per the release, the game was first played in 1900 and has been played in Dallas since 1912 and in the Cotton Bowl since 1929.
Should College Rivalry Games Have Corporate Sponsors?
The Longhorns lead the all-time series 60-43-5, having also won the most recent meeting in 2013 despite entering the game as substantial underdogs. However, OU had won the previous three meetings before that and still has a 9-5 record since the start of the new millennium.
AT&T Stadium in Arlington—home of the NFL's Dallas Cowboys and the world's largest video board and affectionately known as "Jerry's World" after Cowboys owner Jerry Jones—will host the championship of the inaugural College Football Playoff in 2015, and the company continues reaching its arm into the biggest stages for the biggest games.
As long as it doesn't interfere with the product on the field (and how could it?), no one should too much mind the corporate partnership.