Barbecue for 'Bama
Teams go head to head, mayors of Bryan, College Station, Tuscaloosa go grill to grill
Published: Wednesday, September 11, 2013
Updated: Wednesday, September 11, 2013 23:09
The battle between two schools just got a little tastier.
The Convention and Visitor’s Bureaus of Bryan-College Station and Tuscaloosa, Ala., along with the mayors — College Station’s Nancy Berry, Bryan’s Jason Bienski and Tuscaloosa’s Walt Maddox — have raised the stakes of the A&M vs. Alabama — by a few racks of ribs.
Per wager stipulations, the mayor and CVB director of the the losing side must wear the opposing school’s logo or other regalia, eat the rival city’s best barbecue and then take pictures in front of a tourist attraction in the winning city, a release from Bryan-College Station CVB said. Berry said she trusts the Aggies to take them to victory.
“[I’m] very confident,” Berry said. “Losing is not an option.”
Jordan Meserole, director of communications for the Bryan-College Station CVB, said the idea for the wager arose as the CVB thought of ways to welcome visitors.
“We just thought it was an interesting way to promote tourism,” Meserole said.
Bienski said the wager may even grow and develop in the next few days to include components such as cowboy hats.
“We may sweeten the pot and do some other stuff,” Bienski said.
Although the barbecue provider has yet to be chosen, Meserole said it won’t let the rivaled Alabamians down.
“We want to find a barbecue place that is local to Bryan-College Station and one that represents us,” Meserole said. “We joke ‘Who’s really winning here?’ Even if we win, they get some of the best of Texas barbecue.”
With Bryan-College Station’s victory in the hands of the football players, Berry said she trusted the coaches and fans to guide the team to a win.
“I know the 12th man is going to show up in style and root the team on to victory,” Berry said. “I think the coaches are going to prepare the team well and they don’t need any words of wisdom from me.”
With an estimated 50 to 75 thousand visitors in town, Meserole said he’s focused on ensuring all visitors have an enjoyable time, no matter which team they are rooting for.
“We’re excited to have so many people coming to Aggieland,” he said. “We always encourage all the Aggies to show the Alabama fans a good time no matter what the outcome of the game is. That’s what we’re showing with the barbecue bet as well.”
Berry said she wants Alabama fans to experience the same courtesy in College Station as Aggies experienced last year in Tuscaloosa.
“I understand that when we were in Tuscaloosa last year, they were very gracious and coming up and congratulating [Aggies] on winning,” she said.
With what is expected to be a full student section, Meserole said he wants Alabama to know what Aggie football is all about.
“Let Alabama know who the 12th Man is,” he said. “The team does better when they’re there to support them and when the team does well, the 12th Man gets louder.”
Berry said the wager has been an entertaining one, but she is looking forward to another Aggie victory.
“It’s a fun wager,” she said. “Beat the hell outta Alabama.”