One angry Aggie

By Chuck Carlton
Updated: January 26, 2011

DALLAS — Texas A&M athletic director Bill Byrne raised concerns Tuesday that Texas’ new cable network with ESPN could conflict with NCAA recruiting rules.

High school games and coverage were mentioned as part of the programming at the introductory press conference last week with Texas and ESPN officials.

“I can’t speak for the NCAA, but I would imagine the governing body will look into the use of a collegiate television network airing games of prospective student-athletes,” Byrne said in a statement.

“I understand networks such as FSN and ESPN airing high school sports, but whether or not employees under contract with a university that may have additional contact would seem to be an issue.”

Byrne said questions about Texas’ new contract, worth $300 million over 20 years, would be discussed at length at A&M and in the Big 12 with the league’s partners.

Recent rumors, based on anonymous quotes, suggested some A&M fans might have an interest in renewing discussions with the SEC because of Texas’ new deal.

“As we have stated on many occasions, it is our desire to work with our member institutions in the Big 12 Conference to do what is best for our league, and, of course, do what is best for Texas A&M University,” Byrne said.

Byrne’s comments came during a question and answer session with members of the media Tuesday night.