Story Poster
Photo by Lindsay Caudle, TexAgs
Texas A&M Football

Athletic director Scott Woodward has high hopes for Texas A&M

June 9, 2016
26,294

The man in charge of Texas A&M athletics wants to play Texas in football, wants the Arkansas football series played on campus and wants state-of-the-art facilities for all sports.

He does not, however, want Aggie fans to manage expectations.

In fact, Scott Woodward invites grandiose expectations because he has them, as well.

“Frankly, my expectations are just like theirs,” Woodward said. “We’re here to win championships, to do it the best way we can and to do it the right way."

In a Tuesday interview with TexAgs, Woodward said beer sales are being considered at A&M baseball games, he’s working to improve the quality of concessions at sporting events, that someday he’d like to schedule a football series with Washington and that he believes the football program has a solid foundation that can legitimately challenge SEC West powerhouses Alabama and LSU.

Woodward, who arrived in College Station four months ago from the University of Washington, said the infrastructure is there to warrant those expectations.

Lindsay Caudle, TexAgs Athletic director Scott Woodward cited Kyle Field's redevelopment as evidence of Texas A&M's commitment to success. {"Module":"photo","Alignment":"left","Size":"large","Caption":"Athletic director Scott Woodward cited Kyle Field\u0027s redevelopment as evidence of Texas A\u0026M\u0027s commitment to success.","MediaItemID":59554}
“We’re set up here,” he said. “We have resources here. We have great recruiting bases here. We have incredible academics here. We’re set to really do good things. My expectations are very high.”

Woodward isn’t the first athletic director to set high goals and forecast championships, but he seems to be delivering more than the company line.

He also has a history of getting things accomplished.

As athletic director at the University of Washington,  he was able to coax heralded football coach Chris Peterson away from Boise State and get him to come to Seattle. Woodward also spearheaded a $350 million drive to renovate Husky Stadium.

For years, A&M has discussed and debated the need to construct an outdoor track & field stadium and a new softball stadium. Those projects have been put on hold for more than a decade.

Two months ago, A&M regents approved plans to construct both facilities.

It’s no coincidence headway was made on those projects shortly after Woodward arrived.

“You look at the fact that you have probably the worst softball facility in the SEC, and you look at our outdoor track stadium (where) you can’t hold a meet for a world-class team,” Woodward said.

“That’s not the Aggie way. We want to be great at everything we do from physics to football. I didn’t have to do a lot of convincing. That’s the beauty of being here. Everybody is excited about the prospects moving forward. I sensed that from day one.”

Perhaps Woodward has been able to make traction because he appeared a great fit at Texas A&M from day one.

TexAgs Former A&M athletic director Eric Hyman often seemed condescending and unapproachable, unlike his replacement. {"Module":"photo","Alignment":"right","Size":"large","Caption":"Former A\u0026M athletic director Eric Hyman often seemed condescending and unapproachable, unlike his replacement.","MediaItemID":46300}
Woodward is more approachable than his predecessor, Eric Hyman, who at times seemed condescending … like when he said his job was to “manage expectations.”

Woodward is more cordial and laid back. He wears a business suit, of course, but frequently with an open-neck shirt.

“I only wear a tie when I’m asking for money,” he joked.

Humor and an easy-going nature plays well in College Station. It’s even better when the Aggies play well, too.

Texas A&M is the only Southeastern Conference member to appear in a football bowl game, the NCAA basketball tournament and the NCAA baseball playoffs. Indeed, A&M’s is the only athletic department in the nation to reach the postseason in every sport in which it competes.

The men’s basketball team reached the Sweet 16 for only the fourth time in school history. Woodward promptly awarded coach Billy Kennedy with a contract.

The baseball team is heading into the NCAA Super Regionals and is among the favorites to advance – and perhaps win – the College World Series.

Of course, football matters most, and after consecutive 8-5 finishes there has been growing discontent with Coach Kevin Sumlin’s program. In fact, the website coacheshotseat.com lists Sumlin as the coach whose job is most in jeopardy.

Not so, says Woodward. He said that A&M’s spectacular inaugural SEC season of 2012 – in which the Aggies finished 11-2 behind Heisman-winning quarterback Johnny Manziel – gave a false perception of the true strength of the A&M program.

“We didn’t have the depth or the size or the strength,” Woodward said. “We had the speed and very good skill positions, but we needed to get deeper and stronger. I know (Sumlin) has enunciated that many a time. As long as we see that progress, that’s what we need to be great.

Alex Parker, TexAgs Texas A&M football coach Kevin Sumlin received his new athletic director's vote of confidence on Tuesday. {"Module":"photo","Alignment":"right","Size":"large","Caption":"Texas A\u0026M football coach Kevin Sumlin received his new athletic director\u0027s vote of confidence on Tuesday.","MediaItemID":68003}
“I really feel like (Sumlin) is a first-class coach, and I like the staff he’s put together. The first units look like SEC-caliber star athletes and star players. We need to get more in the depth department. We need to continue to recruit for the long haul of the SEC.”

Woodward actually offered LSU and Alabama as examples.

Though LSU won national championships in 2003 and 2007 and played for a national title in 2011, the Tigers endured a decade of mediocrity in the '90s.

“People forget (former LSU coaches) Mike Archer and Curley Hallman,” said Woodward, who attended LSU. “The first time I came to Kyle Field, R.C. (Slocum) whipped them pretty good. There were very average years in the late '80s and '90s … a decade of malaise, essentially. People forget that.”

He said there is a similar case of amnesia for Alabama, which has won four national championships in the past seven seasons.

However, Woodward pointed out Alabama's national title in 1992 under Gene Stallings and its first crown under Nick Saban in 2009 were separated by nearly twenty years.

“The reign of the three Mikes (coaches Mike DuBose, Mike Price and Mike Shula) was very average for Alabama,” Woodward said. “So, you go through these cycles.”

He said A&M is in the process of building a football program that can attain the kind of success that Alabama and LSU have had.

“I like where we are, and I like how we’re building,” Woodward said. “And I’m like the fan base –  I’m impatient. I also have to look at it from the standpoint of what we’re facing, what we’re up against and the job that we’re doing.

“This is one of those things where you have to make sure you’re getting it right and the foundation is solid so you’re not making – in my opinion – rash or imprudent decisions.”

One of the decisions he may face in the future is whether or not to restore the series against Texas ... Woodward said he would be in favor of playing the Longhorns again, but only under the right circumstances. {"Module":"quote","Alignment":"left","Quote":"One of the decisions he may face in the future is whether or not to restore the series against Texas ... Woodward said he would be in favor of playing the Longhorns again, but only under the right circumstances.","Author":""}
One of the decisions he may face in the future is whether or not to restore the series against Texas, which canceled the long-time rivalry game after A&M left the Big 12 for the SEC in 2012.

Woodward said he would be in favor of playing Texas again, but only under the right circumstances.

“I’m against doing it at the end of the season,” he said.

“I’d like to do it at the beginning of the season. I think that makes more sense from my standpoint. We obviously have obligations with Power Five non-conference games going out a few years.

"Then, (there's) the standpoint of making sure it works for Texas, too," he continued. "We’re not totally blind here – though, we’d like to be – but it has to work for them as well. I guess at the proper time, we’ll have discussions about it.”

A lot of Aggies won’t like Woodward’s position on the Texas issue. Yet, most seem to like him.

He says he’s been made to feel very welcome by Aggies, but he’s also aware that in his job the love is not unconditional.

“I’ve been very welcomed, and I feel very good about it,” Woodward said. “But it’s always, 'What have you done for me?' (It's) not, 'What are you doing for me?'

“They want results. I want to give them results.”
Discussion from...

Scott Woodward embraces high expectations as Aggie athletic director

19,966 Views | 32 Replies | Last: 4 yr ago by West Point Aggie
Olin Buchanan
How long do you want to ignore this user?
Staff
S
Scott Woodward embraces high expectations as Aggie athletic director
inch05
How long do you want to ignore this user?
AG
really good, thanks!
brockdgag86
How long do you want to ignore this user?
Thanks Olin!
Ag_EE
How long do you want to ignore this user?
Uncle Jimbo
How long do you want to ignore this user?
The difference between our decade (or more) of mediocrity and the ones that Alabama and LSU had is that Nick Saban isn't walking in our door.
halfastros81
How long do you want to ignore this user?
AG
1) How do you know he's not?

2) A number coaches not named Nick Saban have won Championships and overseen the building of dynasties. The goal is to find the next Nick Saban.
greg.w.h
How long do you want to ignore this user?
AG
It sounds good. My ears are tickled and I feel all warm inside!

Defending Sumlin makes it sound like he hasn't quite given up on managing expectations, though. I realize that the reboot with the coaching staff is underway and there is time left on Sumlin's contract to realize more return on investment by helping the current staff succeed than by paying departure payments. For Woodward's comments about doing it the right way to be true and building depth to be true, we should see a 10 win season plus a bowl win for 11-2 final record. Otherwise: he's wrong.
fireinthehole
How long do you want to ignore this user?
quote:
The difference between our decade (or more) of mediocrity and the ones that Alabama and LSU had is that Nick Saban isn't walking in our door.

Nor is a Saban walking through anyone else's door. See tu,
Bob Dobalina
How long do you want to ignore this user?
quote:

Defending Sumlin makes it sound like he hasn't quite given up on managing expectations, though.


ADs defend their coaches right up until they fire them. The decisions on Sumlin are going to go way above Woodward. Hyman basically used the managing expectations excuse to do nothing when he had the power to do something. No AD at A&M is going to be solely in charge of the football coach or program.

I liked his comments on recruiting. He knows all parties (coaches, boosters, etc.) have to get on the same page to make it work.
Jarrin' Jay
How long do you want to ignore this user?
F playing cow.

All else sounds good.....
ag2003
How long do you want to ignore this user?
AG
The only way you bring back the Texas series is on Thanksgiving....makes zero sense to play them early in the year
The Chicken Ranch
How long do you want to ignore this user?
AG
I agree. I'm confused why he would want to play tu at any time other than Thanksgiving.
MyComputerCareer
How long do you want to ignore this user?
If a loss is going to take you out of playoff contention, it should be a conference loss.
Aggie87
How long do you want to ignore this user?
AG
quote:
I agree. I'm confused why he would want to play tu at any time other than Thanksgiving.

Don't want to play tu at all, ever again. Don't look back.

Don't give them a chance to play us (and beat us).

If that were to happen (assuming they develop their program and develop better coaching), and they beat us a time or two, it will only hurt us with in-state recruiting. And help them.

We want to be a difference, an alternative. Not equals or comparable to tu.

Don't play them. This will keep the scales balanced in our favor with recruits.

I'll be happy to never play them again in my lifetime.
el_guapo
How long do you want to ignore this user?
The time of playing tu on Thanksgiving is over. We are now in the SEC and have wrestled lsu away from Arkansas for the Thanksgiving game. We need to focus on nurturing our main rival WITHIN the SEC.
The Chicken Ranch
How long do you want to ignore this user?
AG
More scared Ags. Good thing the AD disagrees with you. As do the ADs at Florida, Georgia, USC, and UK. They aren't afraid of their in state OOC rivals like y'all are.

Eventually this game will be renewed. And when it is the TMF foundation will need to send tampons and pacifiars in the ticket renewal packets.
Aggie87
How long do you want to ignore this user?
AG
quote:
More scared Ags. Good thing the AD disagrees with you. As do the ADs at Florida, Georgia, USC, and UK. They aren't afraid of their in state OOC rivals like y'all are.

Eventually this game will be renewed. And when it is the TMF foundation will need to send tampons and pacifiars in the ticket renewal packets.

Be nice if you could respect others who don't share your opinion, instead of having to denigrate them

For me it's a matter of actively disliking them and never wanting to see them get back up again.

Playing them helps them achieve that, gives them more credibility.

Not scared of nothing tu.
The Chicken Ranch
How long do you want to ignore this user?
AG
No, you are scared to death that we would lose if we played them again. You even said this. It is also entertaining to watch the gnashing of teeth and hand wringing on this board any time anyone, including the AD, even mentions playing tu again.

tu will be back up again on their own, probably sooner than we are. I think we are a little full of ourselves to think that playing tu only helps them and hurst us, when in reality it would probably benefit us more in the long run due to the inherent advantage that the SEC gives us. Of course, no one sees that. This is the same for Florida, UGA, USC, and even Kentucky. And those schools actually play and aren't afraid of their in state OOC rival. Does it hurt Gerogia when they lose to GT? Does it hurt Florida when FSU wins? Of course not.

Why is it ok for us to play them in basketball, baseball, and softball but not football? Haven't they historically dominated us in all those sports as well, while we currently have the better programs?
Maroon Flash
How long do you want to ignore this user?
AG
quote:
Eventually this game will be renewed. And when it is the TMF foundation will need to send tampons and pacifiars in the ticket renewal packets.

No some of us just have a good memory of why we left the Bdf conference.

Don't you remember tu getting time put back on the clock to beat Nebraska or the totally bogus PI call that set them up to kick a field goal for the win over us in the last game?

Not in the least scared of them, I just am aware of tu's propensity to pay off refs.

Rather than dividing the fanbase we ALL look forward to playing teams such as UCLA. No need to make tu appear legit by getting on the field with us.
The Chicken Ranch
How long do you want to ignore this user?
AG
Take it up with the AD. He's the one that wants them back on the schedule and has the power to try and make it happen.
W
How long do you want to ignore this user?
AG
Good interview with Woodward.

like I've posted before...the first step to getting the horns back on the schedule...is getting the Arkansas game back to campus.

A&M has to get its home & away schedules with Alabama, Auburn, LSU, Arkansas, and (potentially) t.u. organized so to speak. Can't play 4 of the 5 away from Kyle on a regular basis. That's scheduling suicide. Also must keep 7 home games per year.

so unless the Jerryworld contract is cut short somehow...the earliest t.u. would be back on the schedule is 2025
W
How long do you want to ignore this user?
AG
and regarding Sumlin...there's no way A&M is going to pay him $15 million (after 2016) to walk away (plus what Chavis and Mazzone would be owed). No way. He'll be here thru the 2017 season (barring some terrible scandal)

Frederick Palowaski
How long do you want to ignore this user?
AG
quote:
More scared Ags. Good thing the AD disagrees with you. As do the ADs at Florida, Georgia, USC, and UK. They aren't afraid of their in state OOC rivals like y'all are.

Eventually this game will be renewed. And when it is the TMF foundation will need to send tampons and pacifiars in the ticket renewal packets.


The "scared" argument is only from Ags that need to measure their own d!cks with the horns. Quite sad really.
The Chicken Ranch
How long do you want to ignore this user?
AG
Isn't that what football is all about?

And no one has EVER given a reason why it is ok for UF, UGA, USC, and UK to play their in state OOC rivals but not us. Sure, I've heard about how the refs cheat, and how they are bad business partners, all of which we know IS entirely true. Do you honestly think that these schools don't have the exact same
Issues and hate with their rivals? Of course they do! But these folks fail to acknowledge that tu's ability to manipulate those things is long gone now that we are in the SEC. There has never been a time in our history where we have been more equal with them than now. Want to kick them while they are down and change the paradigm for generations? Play and whip their asses!

Woodward understand this.
TMartin
How long do you want to ignore this user?
I posted a number of times that A&M had become a retirement center for ADs and badly needed a new one with some vision and a pulse I got blasted for those comments. Suddenly things are different......go figure.
oklacityag75
How long do you want to ignore this user?
AG
Thanks OB, another great article. We finally have an AD with vision. He is a huge breath of fresh air after Dazed and Confused Hyman.

quote:
Woodward said he would be in favor of playing Texas again, but only under the right circumstances.

The right circumstances would be playing EVERY year at Kyle. We choose the dates and it is ONLY through the SEC programming. lhn will not be allowed any rights, including replays.

We need to all remember, DeLOSER Dud canceled the series. tu quit playing TAMU and coerced gheylol, TCWho, and tceh into not playing us. They burned the bridge and they must rebuild the bridge. That means we will dictate everything concerning the series.
http://i109.photobucket.com/albums/n54/townsend_h/maroonstate-whiteaTm_zps54e4b3e7.jpg

Tamu_mgm
How long do you want to ignore this user?
AG
quote:
and regarding Sumlin...there's no way A&M is going to pay him $15 million (after 2016) to walk away (plus what Chavis and Mazzone would be owed). No way. He'll be here thru the 2017 season (barring some terrible scandal)


Yup, at minimum until after the 2017 season. And if we do 9 wins or better in 2016, that buys him at least another season past that
libertyag
How long do you want to ignore this user?
AG
Football series with Washington? nah
Aggie87
How long do you want to ignore this user?
AG
quote:
Why is it ok for us to play them in basketball, baseball, and softball but not football? Haven't they historically dominated us in all those sports as well, while we currently have the better programs?

Corps of Cadets membership became voluntary only in the mid-60's. The first black student to graduate from A&M happened in 1967. The first black starter on the A&M football team (Hugh McElroy) didn't happen until 1970.

If you take roughly 1972 as the dividing line between a basically Corps of Cadets football program at A&M, and what became a truly competitive football program at A&M, then the records are like this:


A&M vs tu, up through 1972, 79 games - tu 56 wins, A&M 18 wins, 5 ties

A&M vs tu, from 1973 to present, 39 games - tu 20 wins, A&M 19 wins


Since the time frame when the teams were playing with the same parameters, tu has certainly *NOT* dominated A&M.
greg.w.h
How long do you want to ignore this user?
AG
quote:
No, you are scared to death that we would lose if we played them again. You even said this. It is also entertaining to watch the gnashing of teeth and hand wringing on this board any time anyone, including the AD, even mentions playing tu again.

tu will be back up again on their own, probably sooner than we are. I think we are a little full of ourselves to think that playing tu only helps them and hurst us, when in reality it would probably benefit us more in the long run due to the inherent advantage that the SEC gives us. Of course, no one sees that. This is the same for Florida, UGA, USC, and even Kentucky. And those schools actually play and aren't afraid of their in state OOC rival. Does it hurt Gerogia when they lose to GT? Does it hurt Florida when FSU wins? Of course not.

Why is it ok for us to play them in basketball, baseball, and softball but not football? Haven't they historically dominated us in all those sports as well, while we currently have the better programs?
I'm fine with never playing them again in any sport. We have great conference mates and some of them will emerge as storied rivals that outshine the schools in Austin, Baylor (which is its own region surrounded by Waco), and Lubbock. Off the top of my head, LSU, Florida, and 'Bama are excellent competitors to take the field against in almost every sport. Florida compares favorably to Stanford in the Learfield Director's Cup so might be the most direct comparison with Texas. 'Bama and LSU are the cream of the crop in football. And the rest of the West Division should bring pride and joy to A&M.

Fear of Texas? No. And trying to turn it into a schoolyard shoving match to try and make your point belittles both you and those you're addressing. Just like our former conference mates did. Politely requesting that you cease and desist. Make your arguments based on reason and facts not based on imputations of failings in those you're arguing against.
Lungblood
How long do you want to ignore this user?
TCR is a disappointment to all Aggies. The new AD may be too... If he doesn't win in FOOTBALL!

TCR the poster, of course. The real Chicken Ranch was a Fine Establishment.
Lungblood
How long do you want to ignore this user?
quote:
quote:
No, you are scared to death that we would lose if we played them again. You even said this. It is also entertaining to watch the gnashing of teeth and hand wringing on this board any time anyone, including the AD, even mentions playing tu again.

tu will be back up again on their own, probably sooner than we are. I think we are a little full of ourselves to think that playing tu only helps them and hurst us, when in reality it would probably benefit us more in the long run due to the inherent advantage that the SEC gives us. Of course, no one sees that. This is the same for Florida, UGA, USC, and even Kentucky. And those schools actually play and aren't afraid of their in state OOC rival. Does it hurt Gerogia when they lose to GT? Does it hurt Florida when FSU wins? Of course not.

Why is it ok for us to play them in basketball, baseball, and softball but not football? Haven't they historically dominated us in all those sports as well, while we currently have the better programs?
I'm fine with never playing them again in any sport. We have great conference mates and some of them will emerge as storied rivals that outshine the schools in Austin, Baylor (which is its own region surrounded by Waco), and Lubbock. Off the top of my head, LSU, Florida, and 'Bama are excellent competitors to take the field against in almost every sport. Florida compares favorably to Stanford in the Learfield Director's Cup so might be the most direct comparison with Texas. 'Bama and LSU are the cream of the crop in football. And the rest of the West Division should bring pride and joy to A&M.

Fear of Texas? No. And trying to turn it into a schoolyard shoving match to try and make your point belittles both you and those you're addressing. Just like our former conference mates did. Politely requesting that you cease and desist. Make your arguments based on reason and facts not based on imputations of failings in those you're arguing against.
West Point Aggie
How long do you want to ignore this user?
AG
quote:
The time of playing tu on Thanksgiving is over. We are now in the SEC and have wrestled lsu away from Arkansas for the Thanksgiving game. We need to focus on nurturing our main rival WITHIN the SEC.


Agreed...we left the conference tu is in...that week' slot belongs to lsu...if we renew with the nutless ones it needs to be some other time...I get the sense the AD gets this...plus thanksgiving is dead to college football (at least he day of...that now is owned by the NFL...why we continue to be hard-headed about it is puzzling!). Hopefully ESPN forces a change to Friday or Saturday where that game belongs...
Refresh
Page 1 of 1
 
×
subscribe Verify your student status
See Subscription Benefits
Trial only available to users who have never subscribed or participated in a previous trial.