Tradition and the Aggies

It is important to preserve a collective identity. Tradition serves as a guide, a handy code reference for the social norms by which the new person will abide. It can become stifling, however. New ideas can be crushed by the stodgy adherence to tradition, often called “the way we do things” or “that’s the way it’s always been.”

I’m not exactly sure which iteration of tradition we are talking about with this A&M move.

Pete Thamel says A&M is ignoring tradition. He is mostly talking about the long history of competition between them and Texas. That is good tradition. He is also talking about the conference affiliation with Texas, one that has long favored one over the other. Though, A&M has always had one chief rival, the don’t play that game as a showpiece in Dallas do they? No, Texas has long been the Cowboys to the SWC/BigXII’s NFC East. They are everyone’s rivals and no one’s exclusively.

That’s a bad tradition. Unrequited hate? If A&M has determined that the relationship as currently formed is not worth preserving even at the loss of so much inter-school history? Well then they have no choice. Sure, Texas needs them . . . to fill a role. They need them to be the plucky thorn in their side. Good enough to be a worthy loser post-Thanksgiving.

I’m rooting for them to move. Same way I root for mistreated girlfriends to get out from bad relationships with abusive boyfriends. How could you not? Texas and the rest of the Big XII are not making compelling arguments for staying. that sound much different from said abusive boyfriend, either “You promised.” “Look what you’ll be doing to everyone here!” “You’re being selfish.”

That last one is key. Thamel also threw that line in there. No doubt there is some measure of pride involved on the Aggie half. Deriders call it “ego.” The Aggies have a first-class university and to be cliche — they have to look out for themselves a bit. Texas A&M is as good or better than Texas in many facets –they just want to be treated like it.

I can’t hate ‘em for that.

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Editor extraordinaire, UTSA grad student. Twitter