Last week the Dallas area was front and center on the national TV spotlight with North Texas and SMU both having prime time games on national television. It was a rare opportunity for both of these up and coming programs to showcase their talent, but also showcase their campus to a wider audience. It is an exciting time for both schools because starting next season each of them will be joining a new conference, and be looking to take their teams to the next level.
North Texas started the week off with “Sunbelt Tuesdays” and made a very impressive showing on ESPN 2 with a victory over the defending conference champion. It wasn’t the victory that proved a lot for the Mean Green, it was how they won it. Coming back from a halftime deficit, and letting their opponent score on the opening drive of the second half. It was this type of win which will help attract attention to North Texas and may keep some recruits closer to home. While this was a rare national appearance for North Texas, don’t be surprised if they show up more in the future.
SMU had to wait for their turn on Thursday night with a rare weeknight game on Fox Sports network. But the Mustangs came out on a stampede and were in control early and never looked to lose it. Their opponent Houston tried to fight back, but just couldn’t catch any of the momentum needed to overtake the Mustangs. June Jones has done yeomen’s work at SMU getting them back to a respectable status after the death penalty.
While SMU seems like it is closer to getting to a more respectable standing nationally, North Texas has had more success with winning conference championships in the last decade. Both teams have been laughing stocks, and are now looking like competitive programs which could make the recruiting scene in Dallas that much tougher. Neither of these schools will take recruits away from Texas, Oklahoma or A&M, but they could well battle another area team for talent and lessen the gap between them and TCU.
This is a great time to be a college football fan in Dallas-Fort Worth; because all three area programs are getting better each year and it could be a battle between the three. The Metroplex is no longer a college football wasteland.