UT-A&M rivalry came to an end once before

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UT-A&M rivalry came to an end once before - Houston Chronicle
The first great interruption occurred on Nov. 14, 1911, the day after Texas battled to a 6-0 victory over A&M at Houston's West End Park while their fans - well, they just battled.

It was a time when Varsity (Texas) and College (A&M) would on occasion play twice a year at Austin, Dallas, San Antonio and Houston, which from 1908 through 1911 hosted the teams as part of the cotton industry-themed Carnival known as Not-Su-Oh - Houston spelled backward.

Conflict from the start

From the beginning, the games at West End Park, the city's baseball park at Andrews and Heiner streets, were fraught with conflict. In 1908, A&M students took offense to Texas students carrying broomsticks as if they were rifles, and a Texas student was stabbed.

But the real shakeup came when A&M, which was 1-13-2 against Texas from 1894 through 1908, won three in a row in 1909 and 1910 under coach Charles Barthold "Uncle Charley" Moran. Moran played for the St. Louis Cardinals and was an assistant to Pop Warner at Carlisle during the Jim Thorpe era. He came in 1909 to A&M and declared, "I didn't come here to lose."

Most of the time, he didn't. The Farmers twice beat Texas in 1909, including a 23-0 win in Houston, and won in 1910 in Houston, 14-8.
Texas team manager Stephen F. Pinckney told the Austin American-Statesman that A&M "has earned a reputation for rotten athletics. … They admit trying to injure some of our men."

"I never played in so dirty a game in my life," said Texas lineman Marshall Ramsdell. "… (A&M players) use brute force and break legs and arms and heads by slugging if necessary."

The Bryan Eagle responded with the headline "Varsity Curses Sent Home to Roost/Slanderous Charges of Texas University Athletic Authorities Refuted by Positive and Incontestable Evidence."

"The football team, the student body, the athletic council, the faculty and the alumni association have found nothing wrong in Mr. Moran's systems or tactics," wrote J.B. Bagley, A&M athletic council president.

And so the teams parted. Texas lost just two games over the next three years and was unbeaten in 1914. A&M in 1912, with what was considered Moran's best team, outscored opponents 366-25, but the lost revenue from the Texas game, Hohn wrote, "all but sent our athletic department into bankruptcy."

Quietly, former A&M players Hal Moseley and Joe Utay began talks with Texas, which in 1913 hired Theo Bellmont from his job as secretary of the Houston YMCA to be athletic director, to revive the series.

On Nov. 30, 1914, the schools agreed to play again in 1915. A few days later, Moran resigned, citing "immediate pressure of other business" in his home state of Kentucky.

Parting wish

He received a full dress parade from the Corps and was made an honorary member of the Class of 1913. As A&M prepared to play Texas in 1915, he wrote each player a letter that concluded, "If you still love me and think anything of me, then beat Texas."

They complied, winning 13-0 in the first A&M-Texas game at College Station, and the A&M athletic department recorded a net profit of $3,429.07 - roughly the amount that Texas, with its $152 million athletic budget spends every 15 minutes these days.
A great read not only about the rivalry, but a look into why there were a lot of people who wanted football outlawed back in the day.

Oh, and the line "a dilly of a donnybrook" made me realize that Keith Jackson was already writing about football in 1911. ;)

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