The 2016 Texas-TCU football game has been moved from Thanksgiving to the day after - Friday, Nov. 25 - a decision initiated by the Big 12 TV partners.
Both Texas and TCU announced on Friday their 2016 football game has been moved from Thanksgiving to the day after - Friday, Nov. 25.
The move was initiated by the Big 12 TV partners - ESPN and Fox.
From a practical standpoint, this makes sense, because UT's traditional game on Thanksgiving no longer had the tradition.
When Texas played Texas A&M on Thanksgiving it was an event everyone made plans for.
And because it was home-and-home, the students at either school were willing to give up going home for Thanksgiving to attend the game on their campus every other year.
But with Texas always playing the Thanksgiving game at home - against either TCU or Texas Tech - students haven't been willing to stick around, in part, because the Longhorns' haven't been nationally relevant.
The game also began to struggle in the ratings once the NFL night game on Thanksgiving moved from the NFL Network (which wasn't carried by Time Warner for years) to NBC, where everyone could easily access the game.
So it only seems logical to move Texas' Thanksgiving night game to the Friday after if the Turkey Day game wasn't even holding UT fans' interest from an attendance standpoint without A&M or a regular opponent (which would require home-and-home, so that students might be willing to re-arrange Turkey Day plans every other year to be on campus for the game).
Again, it hasn't helped that since A&M bolted for the SEC after the 2011 season, Texas football has been underperforming.
The only way Texas students will come back from Thanksgiving break even to attend a game on the Friday after Thanksgiving is if the Longhorns get back to being a Big 12 title contender with championship/postseason implications on the line.
UT's press release ...
Texas Football game against TCU to be played November 25
The game between the Longhorns and Horned Frogs was originally scheduled to be played on Thanksgiving Day, November 24.
Austin — Texas’ 2016 football game with TCU will be played on Friday, November 25, at Darrell K Royal-Texas Memorial Stadium. The game was originally scheduled for Thanksgiving Day on Thursday, November 24. The kick time and network broadcast information has not yet been determined.
The Longhorns last played on the Friday after Thanksgiving in 2007 at Texas A&M, with the last home game coming in 2006 versus the Aggies. Those two games finished a stretch of 12-straight Friday games against Texas A&M that began in 1996. Prior to that, the last series of Friday games around the Thanksgiving Holiday came in 1974 and 1975 versus the Aggies.
TCU's press release is a little more forthcoming about WHY the game is being moved - no surprise - it's what the Big 12 TV partners wanted ...
At the request of the Big 12 Conference and television partners ESPN and FOX, TCU's football game at Texas this coming season has been moved from Thanksgiving, Nov. 24, to Friday, Nov. 25.
The Horned Frogs will be playing on Black Friday for the second straight season, having defeated Baylor 28-21 in double overtime this past year.
Since beginning Big 12 play in 2012, TCU has won both its games versus Texas in Austin. Each one was played on Thanksgiving. The Horned Frogs won 20-13 in 2012 and 48-10 in 2014.