The Cowboys Classic at AT&T Stadium has become one of college football's marquee regular-season games. As announced Wednesday, the 2016 version will feature two of the most storied programs in the sport.
According to ESPN.com's Alex Scarborough, the Alabama Crimson Tide and USC Trojans will clash in the opening-weekend affair in two years:
Mark your calendars: Alabama will play USC on Sept. 3, 2016, in the Cowboys Classic.— Alex Scarborough (@AlexS_ESPN) July 16, 2014
The announcement piqued the interest of many within the college football realm. It isn't often that two elite programs meet on one of the biggest stages in the sport, but that is precisely what will happen in 2016.
NFL Network's Albert Breer was particularly impressed by the upcoming matchup:
So that's pretty cool ... RT @Andrew_Gribble Alabama announces it will play USC at the Cowboys Classic in Dallas in 2016.— Albert Breer (@AlbertBreer) July 16, 2014
Bleacher Report's Matt Miller echoed those sentiments:
And I'm announcing my attendance. RT @BarrettSallee: Alabama announces it will play USC in the 2016 Cowboys Classic.— Matt Miller (@nfldraftscout) July 16, 2014
With that said, not everyone is convinced that it was the best course of action. Bryan Fischer of NFL.com is looking forward to the encounter, but would have preferred a multi-game agreement between the schools:
Wish Alabama/USC were doing home-and-home for nostalgia’s sake but I will certainly take that matchup at JerryWorld.— Bryan Fischer (@BryanDFischer) July 16, 2014
Dallas Cowboys owner Jerry Jones has brought some huge events to his state-of-the-art facility since it first opened in 2009, but it can be argued that Alabama vs. USC rivals anything that has come before it.
"We're always looking but not anything I can share with you right now," Saban said. "I don't think we want to create speculation."
Are you excited for the 2016 Cowboys Classic?
Now that it is official, though, anyone and everyone involved with college football will likely be talking about it for the next two years.
The hope among neutral fans has to be that the Trojans regain their footing as a top-ranked team. Alabama has been the toast of college football over the past several years and seems poised to remain in the spot. USC has had its ups and downs, but the potential for greatness is always present.
If the 2016 Cowboys Classic turns out to be a battle between two of the best teams in the country, then it may go down as one of the most highly anticipated regular-season games ever.
Whatever the case, there is no denying the fact that this announcement is great for college football.
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