Is Texas getting a Notre Dame Complex?

Yes, I just really asked that question, and I am asking that from months and months of speculation and rumors that now are starting to show to be true in some cases. The Texas Longhorns as an athletic department have always felt like they are one of the best and most profitable programs in the country. But when it comes to football, there is no team better than the Texas Longhorns in their opinion, you can talk to some fans and they will tell you that even in a loss, Texas was the best team on the field. While is some aspects this sense of entitlement and feeling that your the best no matter what can be a great thing for a program, but in other cases it causes problems and ends up tearing down a great program. Case in point, is the Notre Dame Fighting Irish.

Notre Dame did somthing historic when they went independent and signed a major television contract with NBC Sports. While it had short term dividends, but over time the positive started to fade and now Notre Dame has fallen so far down that they are the butt of many jokes, but ask anyone associated with the school and they are still the great and proud Notre Dame and they still have all of the bravado that they had back when they first went independent. While Notre Dame plays one of the toughest schedules, they tend fall off during the season and haven’t been a national championship team for some time.

Now the Texas Longhorns have started their own network and have started to see the end of the Big XII. There is speculation that the school will follow in the footsteps of BYU and go independent. But is this what will be the best for the Texas football program? The Longhorns have been one of the best programs over the last few seasons(last year not withstanding). Texas has been in constant contention for a national championship, and has  played in two championship games. While Texas has been one of the top dogs in the Big XII since the inception of the conference, there will be a whole different set of problems the program will face if they want to go independent.

Hopefully the Texas administration will realize that the way to be competitive in major college football is to have a conference affiliation. While there is speculation of a shift in conference power to “super conferences” the only thing Texas needs to do is hold on to an affiliation and try to be the best team it can be within the conference. If Texas can’t shake it’s “Notre Dame Syndrome” then the Longhorns may end up suffering the same fate as the fighting irish have. They will wind up a butt of jokes and be stranded in a haze of mediocrity.

The days of being a national power standing alone have gone by the wayside. the BCS and bowl affiliations are all tied to conferences now, and the only way to compete year in and year out is to be the best team you can be in your conference. Texas needs to wake up and realize this before it is too late.

9 thoughts on “Is Texas getting a Notre Dame Complex?

  1. I think there is as much opportunity for Notre Dame tojoin Texas in a new conference, as there is Texas joining Notre Dame as an independent… That is to say: possible, but not probable. College football is trending towards super conferences, so it is most likely that those independents will find a home in one of those super confereces… In my opinion.

    • To me it seems the only way to stay alive and viable as a.program is in a conference. I agree the super conference will take hold. It is just a matter of time.

      • I could conceive of Texas joining a coalition of independent universities like BYU and ND, but I can’t see them joining a super-conference, where they’d have to give up their King status. Last year there were rumors that USC was looking at maybe going Independent with their own TV deal. If you look at Texas’ scheduling over the next 10 years, look who’s on their schedules. BYU, USC, and ND. Coincidence, or preparing in advance for independence or bigger things? I love to see them in an elite coalition like that, and maybe bring along OU too.

  2. Well said my man. They are creating a lot of turmoil with other schools…and I love the Longhorns, but I agree this may be a mistake of epic proportions.

  3. Pingback: Is Texas getting a Notre Dame Complex?, NCAA Football | BallHyped Sports Blogs

  4. I never realized how big Longhorn Nation was until I went to California for both Rose Bowl games in 2004 and 2005. It wasn’t that a lot of UT fans from Texas traveled out there, but there are so many local UT alumni and fans in California. I also saw the same thing at the Horse Shoe in Ohio. Tons of regional UT alums drove in for the game, and for the 15k fans that had tickets to get in the game, there was another 5-10k tailgating outside too. It’s not just athletics either. UT is mentioned in the same academic circles as Ivy League, Stanford, Cal, Duke, Chicago. You’ll be hard to find another large university in a BCS conference with Texas’ resume for across the board success. Academics, Athletics, Community, Alumni, govt representative power, and money. I don’t blame Notre Dame for placing themselves in an independent position, as it allows them open options to increase themselves in all areas.

    • I don’t doubt that Texas could be succsessful as an independent. But I just think it would be a mistake to go independent and end up seeing the Longhorns fall off like Notre Dame has. Can Notre Dame get back into the limelight? yeah, but they have been non existent for so long it is going to take time to gain back that respect and national prominance. they always say that “if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it”

      • ND’s fall-off was due to coaching. They were and still are getting top notch recruits. They just havent been developed. I think Mack definitely realized the drop-off in development this past year, and thus turned his staff over to bring in guys to motivate his 5-star talent. As long as Texas can keep scheduling big games every year, have a big TV deal, and give a kid a decent chance at being drafted into the NFL, then they’ll stay successful. I think ND still has the potential to be big again, but their failure has been in finding a coach big enough to handle the ND pressure. I do worry about that aspect of Texas’ future. Who’s big enough to follow up Mack?

        • You make a great point about the coaching being behind the fall off. And there is a good concern about the follow up to Mack, because he probably has 3-5 years left before he is willing to step down. The replacement will have to be somone special and has the reputation to fill in. I would bet there is going to be some grooming of the young coaches now on the staff, possibly to be the heir apparent. But it won’t be leaked out to the public until the day he steps down. It will be interesting to watch how things change and shape up over the next few years. It is possible that we will see some of the bigger $ programs decide to be independant as opposed to conference ties. But I think for the best succsess, you will see a higher premium on Conference ties, especially within the BCS and especially if they add the “Plus One” format at the end of this contract.

Comments are closed.