Meaning of the Texas Play Game

It may mean very little other than the chance to play a good team before the season starts. Of course that is true and all that goes with that in prep for the season.

Beyond that… why did they invite Arkansas to open their new building? They wanted a good draw? Yes I am sure that is part of it but there are several of those around. I think and could be all wrong, that they may see more to this texas - Arkansas thing than we may think. Beyond a good program, why Arkansas for a play game to open their new building no less? Perhaps I am reading more into this than there is, but I wonder.

Is it just a chance to play a good team and get a good mark even though it is not suppose to count, before that team gets a chance to get it together? That could be some of it, but they have to know that the Hogs could beat them and spoil their party. With that talent it could happen even though they are not yet a team.

Probably means nothing, but I still wonder. . . and don’t tell me that stuff from either team that it is just practice and does not mean anything. I call BS on that!!! It will not be meaningless to the team that wins. It could come into play should the teams meet in the NCAA I guess, but both will be very different by then.

Hey, when Arkansas plays texas in checkers, it means something!

1 Like

I think the game was scheduled because each coach thinks playing the other will make his team better. Arkansas’ players are going to benefit from seeing a defense like Texas’ before the trip to Maui. The Longhorns are going to benefit from competing against a team as athletic as the Razorbacks this early.

I will be surprised if the coaches treat this like they would a regular game, which de-emphasizes the final score somewhat. I think every player will get a chance to play.

Leading up to this exhibition, I’ve thought a lot about what Dave Van Horn told me after his team played the instructional league players for the Texas Rangers earlier this month.

“It wasn’t all about winning these last two days. We rolled innings and scores really weren’t what they would have been.”

All that is true Matt, but why Arkansas over all the teams they could have brought in? I do think they will try to win. It may not be throat cutting to try to win, but both teams want to win this game I think.

1 Like

I don’t know the answer to that, but it might be as simple as Arkansas was willing to play the game. A lot of coaches will only play other Division I teams in the preseason if the results are not disclosed. Kansas and Illinois, for instance, played a secret game at Lindenwood outside of St. Louis last weekend. Texas played one against Houston in San Antonio. There have been several others.

Musselman likes seeing how his teams react in front of a crowd. I like that line of thinking.

I thought I read somewhere that Muss and Beard are good friends. That’s probably why the game is being played.

I really don’t expect us to win this game with all their experience and the atmosphere of opening up the new arena will be absolutely insane. That will make this incredibly hard for a team that has six freshmen and a lot of newcomers trying to learn how to play together.
This will be huge for us going forward though because we will not play in this kind of atmosphere again until we probably play at Auburn. They will be able to learn a lot about what they need to do,who they need to play

1 Like

I believe one reason that Muss wanted this game is to expose his young team to some in your face great defense which Beard’s teams always have. Just a good reality check early in the pre-season.


The past two years it’s been pretty clear that you can’t worry too much about what happens before February 1st, because everything before that date is to get the team ready for the second half of the conference season and the Big Dance. The non-conference schedule is designed to give the team different problems to overcome and to shake out who is in the top eight and who might be inserted in the top eight if there is an injury or other problem.

I think it’s great that we got a bonus “free” road test against a quality opponent right before the season starts. It gives Muss a chance to advance the learning process a little bit for this very talented but very young team.

We need to remember that this game is also for the purpose of opening the new arena and is for charity. That calls for needing an appeal. Arkansas brings appeal.

I grew up in the 80s. I hate Texas. I get it. But, some of us are making this out to be a bigger deal than it is.

1 Like

Muss has swag and knows he has a very talented team. Some might shy away from a game like this but not Muss.

No question, Beard wanted a name team. Like Matt, I don’t think many would agree to coming there and treating it like a true exhibition with fans, etc. Muss didn’t care.

Like Matt said, the coaches are friends and respect each other. The motivation for Muss is that it will be a true travel test against a strong opponent and won’t count against them no matter what happens.

There is one other thing that I saw when I watched practice. It was motivation for Muss to use for his players as they practiced. He could speak on particular players as they worked to note who they would see and their abilities. That was two weeks ago.

1 Like

I wonder if the result of this game will impact the polls though.

1 Like

Exactly this. Knew when the exhibition was announced that it would heighten everyone’s urgency behind closed doors. You don’t bring it in practice, there is a chance you’ll get exposed in the exhibition.

I heard it when I was at a practice two weeks ago. By the way, that piece is now available at Hogs+, my day at practice.

I’ve got a football piece that should be up today at Hogs+.

I wrote three days last week, including a column on my elk hunt that will be on-line sometime this week. Not sure what platform it will run on - some sort of outdoor website NWADG owns.

1 Like

Thanks everyone for the meaningful responses that stayed on topic (rare on here). I think I agreed with all the different points. I guess my biggest point or question was why Arkansas, and could very well be as simple as Clay said that Arkansas would come and several other similar programs would not. I agree that it will be very good for our team regardless of the outcome. These guys found out real quick what is going to be expected. No disrespect to NDSU, but they know they better be ready to go full bore this weekend if they expect to play early.

By the way, I had read a draft of Clay’s elk hunting story and it is good. I told Clay I wish I had been on that hunt.

Pretty sure Beard reached out and asked Muss if he was interested. Muss said yes. Apparently Muss and Beard are good friends, beyond just coaching acquaintances. I don’t see anything more to it than that. Hopefully Beard will return the favor and play Arkansas in BWA next season.

I am sure Muss will welcome any chance to beat Beard. Remember before our game against them in 2021 when the “expert” called Beard against Muss one of the biggest mismatches in all of sports?

I think there are many reasons, but this is a key one. Folks in Austin don’t like Arkansas…but they respect our basketball brand, even if many of them wouldn’t admit that out loud. This should maximize the draw to the game, which is important to the event.

Beyond the charity aspect, there are benefits to be had by both squads, as mentioned by others in this thread, and I don’t think those are lost on either coach.

oh yeah the charity part

forgot about that

Last week Texas had a secret scrimmage against Houston. I am surprised that wasn’t the opposition for the arena opening. Houston is ranked in Top 5 by most and has first team AA in Sasser.