The Top 12 for the 12th Man Tailgating Crew

17 up and 13 down.

That’s the Texas A&M won-loss record for games that I’ve attended.  The .567 winning percentage for our crew would be good enough to get most college coaches relieved of their coaching responsibilities.

So why am I keeping up with Texas A&M games that our tailgate crew has attended?  I recently became inspired by Rusty Burson’s article in the 12th Man Magazine about the Top 60 moments in the last 60 years for Aggie Athletics.  As such, I’ve poured over our games and arrived at the Top 12 Tailgating moments for our 12th Man Tailgating crew.

Note:  12 through 7 follow below.  Be on the lookout for the Top 6 in a future post.

#12 – Saving the Best for Last – 11-26-09 vs. University of Texas – 39 to 49 L

Our most recent tailgate was the best.  The weather cooperated and on Thanksgiving Day, family, friends and fried turkeys made for a great day of tailgating.  If A&M had won, it would have been even better, but as the last tailgate of last year it left everyone looking forward to next year.  Moreover, when Jerrod Johnson outplayed Colt McCoy he renewed hopes in Aggieland that things are going to get better and soon.

#11 – Pro Potential – 09-27-03 vs. University of Pittsburgh – 26 to 37 – L

In the process of one of the most dominating games I’ve ever seen by a wide receiver, Larry Fitzgerald ended up with 7 catches for 135 yards and 3 TD’s at Kyle Field.  The highlight of the day included an over the shoulder catch that would even leave Willie Mays shaking his head.  Although I’ve attached it here, I try not to watch the video too much because it diminishes the memory of seeing it live.


Normally you hate to lose . . . Fitzgerald was so good though, you not only accepted that he was at another level, you were best served to appreciate it as well.

#10 – The Heat Wave – 09-17-2005 vs. SMU – 66 to 8 – W

Our first game as season ticket holders heated up way too quick.

In Texas you hear people from the Arizona talking about dry heat.  On this day it was simply too hot for words.  The Heat Index on the field had to be closer to 150 than to 100 and there was absolutely no wind.  Just sitting in the stadium made me dizzy.

At the start of the 3rd quarter there were no less than 2,000 sweat stained people sitting in the air conditioned area just outside of the Memorial Stadium Center bookstore in order to beat the heat.

#9 – Hurricane Season –09-22-2005 – vs. Southwest Texas State – 44 to 31 – W

Our 2nd game as season ticket tailgaters got moved up to Thursday night and it had nothing to do with ESPN.  Hurricane Rita forced a change in schedule and resulted in a half empty stadium.

Full disclosure:  I watched this game on TV and ended up giving the tickets to some buddies who proceeded to go to College Station and tailgate throughout the game.  Some of their updates from the evening’s festivities would make even the most hard core “Texts From Last Night Fan” blush.

Later they ended up at the Dixie Chicken and helped extend the Chicken’s position as the national leader for bars in the most alcohol consumed per square foot of real estate.

#8 – The Real Hurricanes Hit –09-20-2008 – vs. Miami Hurricanes – 23 to 41 – L

The Miami game was soo hyped.  The game was soo light.  Speed kills.  Miami skill position players ran circles around A&M defenders.

#7 – Name Change–08-30-2008 – vs. Arkansas State – 14 to 18 – L

For two years we called our tailgate team the “Silver Oak on the Brazos”.  If the Aggies won, and since College Station is just off the Brazos River, we’d open up Silver Oak at the post game tailgate.  Great times.

On the drive up for the first game of the 2008 season, one of our newest tailgaters, Sarah, pointed out the window and said, “Hey, we should change our tailgate name.  It looks like Silver Oak on the Brazos is a retirement community.  That’s pretty lame.”

Sure enough whatever self-perceived cool factor we had been working with had just been destroyed.

Not so cool of her too mention, but oh so true.  The moment turned out to be the equivalent jinx of someone talking about a no-hitter during the middle of a baseball game.

Later that evening . . . somehow . . . some way . . . Texas A&M managed to lose to Arkansas State in Coach Mike Sherman’s debut by committing 4 turnovers .  When the last of those turnovers occurred with 7 seconds left in the game–right in front of our seats–the silence was powerful.  The shockwave that went through the stadium was palpable and made my head hurt and ears ring.

Our Silver Oak stayed on wraps that night and we began the process of renaming our tailgating team in earnest.

Look for the Top 6 in an upcoming post.