The Red River Rivalry Belongs In The Cotton Bowl and Nowhere Else

Matt HohnerContributor IOctober 15, 2009

DALLAS - OCTOBER 11:  The Oklahoma Sooners play the Texas Longhorns during the Red River Rivalry at the Cotton Bowl on October 11, 2008 in Dallas, Texas.  (Photo by Ronald Martinez/Getty Images)

I don’t know who was the first person to ever say, “Money is the root of all evil,” but they were pretty damn correct.

Sports have been all about the money nowadays, with no respect or sympathy towards the fans.  Owners have paved the way for the white collar worker, rather than the blue collar person.  I still can’t believe my Red River ticket costs more than my season ticket pass to all of the games in Darrell K. Royal-Texas Memorial Stadium.

You can’t go a minute watching a college football game without seeing a replay sponsored by company “X”, or some post game show sponsored by company “Y”.  Even the Red River Rivalry is sponsored by AT&T, and is now commonly referred to as AT&T Red River Rivalry.

With that being said, I will now refer to the game formerly known as the Red River Rivalry as the AT&T Red River Rivalry.  I mean, AT&T paid millions for their name to be on a rivalry game older than the company itself, right?

Furthermore, Oklahoma and Texas fans, universities want even more money out of their prestigious football programs.  Apparently no one pays respect to tradition and history anymore.

It’s been announced that the AT&T Red River Rivalry will move to the house that Jerry Jones built, and will be played in Cowboys Stadium in Arlington in 2010.  Even though there is a contract to keep this historic rivalry at the fairgrounds of the Texas State Fair through 2015, rumors have been swirling around that both universities would be in favor of rotating the AT&T Red River Rivalry between each campus.

Video Play Button
Videos you might like


The mullah.

I’ve been heavily opposed to this idea for quite some time, but after watching ESPN’s SportsNation yesterday, Colin Cowherd made a valid argument.  Cowherd suggested that college rivalries are similar to families celebrating Christmas.  It’s the same holiday, but a different house each year. 

That might work with every other college rivalry, but it will never be conceivable in the eyes of Sooner and Longhorn fans.

It comes from that whole belief, which the rest of the nation will understand, is that Texans love the fact that they are from Texas.  It’s that whole notion, which Texas Governor Rick Perry emphasized last year in total seriousness that Texas should become a sovereign state.  It’s about history that dates back to the late 1800’s.

The Longhorns originated from Texas’ potent cattle industry.  Cattle drives drove the Longhorns from Texas through Oklahoma to send their products off on trains to the slaughterhouses.

Before Oklahoma became an official state, the U.S. government forced the Native Americans to give up their lands and head west due to America’s expansion.  The government opened up acres upon acres of land to white settlers, but told them they had to wait until they gave them the signal to do so.  People who entered Oklahoma earlier than they were supposed too were coined the term “Sooner.”

These nicknames have historic meaning, rather than the Tigers or Red Raiders (Meaning no disrespect to those nicknames, well, except for that last one).

And these two universities are willing to throw away history and tradition for some extra change?

It’s disgusting.

Oklahoma and Texas are already making at least a hundred dollars a pop for every person that walks through those stadium gates.  Not to mention all the sponsorship deals and television ratings. 

And where does all this money go towards?  So the players can receive brand new textbooks? Yeah right.

C’mon, this rivalry is the most unique and appeal event, in my opinion, in all of college sports. 

There is not a better sight than seeing the Cotton Bowl divided by a sea of crimson red and burnt orange.  The intoxicating smell of Texas barbecue and fried foods always fills my craving for the munchies before and after the game.  Not to mention the display of your team’s pride after the game.

It’s not just a game.  It’s a memorable weekend event that is unforgettable, and not because of the binge drinking that goes on.

Sure this game always has implications not only for the Big XII Conference, but for the national title and Heisman trophy as well. 

It’s a game that not only carries a historic significance, but an annual tradition that has dated back since 1912. 

I couldn’t imagine the AT&T Red River Rivalry anywhere else.  Universities and the media can get how many ever companies they want to sponsor whatever they desire.

Just don’t take away my game from Dallas, Texas.