During the month of June, BON authors will memorialize the final days of the UT-A&M rivalry through a series of perspectives, as seen through The Eyes of Texas, to include essays, personal reflections and commemorations of significant note.
I don't have anything against Texas A&M. I really don't. I have friends that went there, I have family that went there, and I have professional peers who went there. It's a good school. Now, I didn't want to go there (and I didn't want my sister to go there), but I won't begrudge anyone who decides to head to College Station. In my opinion, people should define success and happiness on their own terms.
So when it came time to put together a post for this series, I wanted to avoid writing about any topic that seemed unnecessarily inflammatory. More than anything, I wanted the facts to speak for themselves. So, with that in mind, I decided to research the Texas Volleyball program and their rivalry with Texas A&M. And let me tell you, when it comes to Texas-Texas A&M and volleyball, the facts could not be any clearer.
More, after the jump...
Full disclosure, I'm not a very knowledgeable fan over Texas Volleyball. Now, I've yelled "Point, Texas" in Gregory Gym more than once, but I would consider myself to be more of a "supporter" than a "fan." I highly encourage the BON Community to include some additional stories, anecdotes, and details of dominance in the comments below.
When I started looking into the volleyball rivalry, I fully expected to see that Texas had historically dominated Texas A&M. To verify this fact, I went to Texassports.com, pulled up the game recap for the last match against Texas A&M (which we won), and found the following facts:
- The win improved Texas' all-time record against the Aggies to 70-23 and 23-13 in College Station.
- The Horns' senior class ended its career with an 8-1 record against Texas A&M
In jotting down some notes over these stats, I basically nodded my head and thought "yeah, that sounds about right." This reaction caused me to set my pen down, think about it some more, and ultimately became the backbone of this story. I mean, think about it.
Could it really be that unsurprising that Texas had won 75% of its volleyball matches against Texas A&M? Could it really be that unsurprising that Texas had won nearly 64% of its matches against Texas A&M in College Station? And then, after bit more digging, could it really that unsurprising that Texas had gone 35-5 (a winning percentage of 87.5%) in its home matches against Texas A&M? Could it really be that unsurprising that Texas had gone 12-5 (a winning percentage of 70.5%) on neutral floors against Texas A&M? Well, yes it could. And that's what really struck me about this topic.
Essentially, the only thing surprising about our 75% historical dominance in volleyball was the fact that it remained so unsurprising. I fully expected to find that Texas had owned Texas A&M in volleyball and didnt even bat an eye when I saw the stats. For a "rivalry" series, that seems pretty remarkable. However, over the course of the rivalry, the stats are crystal clear. We beat them at home, we beat them on the road, and we beat them on neutral courts.
Now it's true that everything isn't necessarily that cut-and-dry. For example, after a victory in College Station in 1998, the Longhorns lost seven straight road matches against Texas A&M. Additionally, as pointed out by this article, Jerritt Elliott struggled against Texas A&M at the beginning of his tenure against Texas. I'm sure there are a series of other such stats that can be used to mitigate the disparity of the historical records.
However, as it comes time for Texas A&M to head to the SEC, Texas has dominated the Aggies over the last 7 years. In fact, since 2005, Texas has gone 14-1 against Texas A&M. And, once again, is anyone really surprised by those numbers?
In conclusion: Point, Texas. For the game, set, and match.