There’s going to be a lot of adjustments for new Texas A&M head coach Jimbo Fisher as he settles into life in College Station, one of the sport’s most unique and challenging environments. He’ll be facing sky-high expectations commensurate with his eye-popping 10-year, $75M fully guaranteed contract, and the demands of a fanbase that’s both extremely passionate and deeply eccentric.
For instance, this post that surfaced yesterday on Twitter, via 24/7 sports:
Well, good news, everybody! Coach Fisher met with Reveille today, and this photo was released to the public.
Now, it’s hard to glean a lot of information from this, if you’re not an experienced dog whisperer like myself. Fortunately, we had a representative present at the meeting, and are able to provide this full and entirely accurate transcript. Enjoy!
JIMBO FISHER: Well, gosh, it sure is a pleasure to be here. What a whirlwind! I tell you, there was a time I thought I’d never leave Florida State. I’d been there since 2007, and I’d really built a life for myself there - not to mention winning a national championship in 2013! It’s a terrific program and a great community, and I’m thankful for the opportunities I had there. But I tell you, I was just blown away by what I saw once I was approached by the administration here. Texas A&M is a special place, and Aggies are special people. The passion these fans have, despite having not even won a national title as recently as Maryland, Minnesota, Syracuse or Army! And the traditions! Oh, the traditions. Well, look who I’m talking to about this, you’re the grandest tradition of all! It’s an honor and a privilege to meet you, Reveille, and I can only hope that I’ve garnered your approval.
REVEILLE: [is a dog]
FISHER: Well that’s great, that’s just great. Now, I know it’s going to be a tough road ahead here - the SEC West is arguably the most challenging division in the entirety of college football. Heck, we’ve got two teams in this year’s New Year’s Six on our schedule every year in Alabama and Auburn. LSU is always a challenge, and I tell you - you can’t sleep on Mississippi State, I think Joe Moorhead is going to do great work building on Dan Mullen’s success there. I hear Arkansas is close to hiring Chad Morris, he could really perk up a sleeping giant there. Oh, I see you looking at me now, Rev - can I call you Rev? I know what you’re thinking, “look at him making excuses, talkin’ about how tough the schedule is!” But I know you don’t buy those excuses. I know you won’t settle for anything less than division titles - conference titles - national titles! You believe in this program more than anyone, Rev, and I tell you what - I believe in this program, and I’m gonna give you a run for that crown. We should be competing for the playoff every year, and it’s my promise to you that we will.
REVEILLE: [thinking about sausage]
FISHER: Now, we’re in a talent hotbed here. East Texas is one of the most fertile recruiting grounds in the country, just full of four- and five-star talent. We’ve got a lot of competition here, though - heck, there’s five Power 5 schools in the state alone, not to mention LSU and Oklahoma nearby, and a load of hungry, on-the-rise G5 programs like Houston and SMU. We’ve got the proximity, but we’ve got to make the sale. And that’s where these traditions come in. You bring a recruit on campus, you want to show them that it’s somewhere special. Well, how many schools have something like the Midnight Yell? Or the 12th Man? Or the Aggie Ring? I’ll tell you how many, Rev - just one. Just one, the gol’darn Texas A&M University! I know you know what I’m talking about.
REVEILLE: [notices a butt]
FISHER: I know that look. That’s the look that says “a lot of other people have fed us these platitudes about honoring our traditions, but they haven’t delivered the results we demand.”
REVEILLE: [still looking at butt, thinking about sniffing it] [also thinking about sausage again]
FISHER: Now, don’t get me wrong. Kevin Sumlin’s a fine, fine coach. I have great respect for his body of work, and I think he’ll succeed in the future, wherever he lands. But you’ve got to be honest with yourself. He came in from the University of Houston - a fine program in its own right, they’re doing some great things over there - but it’s not the pressure cooker that you’ve got here in College Station. You step out on the grass at Kyle Field - and boy, that’s a fine stadium, terrifying place for opponents to play, just some top-notch renovations you’ve had done there recently - you need to know that you can handle that pressure. Well, I think I’ve proven myself in that regard during my time in Tallahassee. There was a program with high expectations. They’d had 14 straight years of top-5 finishes fresh in their memory, but were relegated to the Gator Bowl by the time I came in. It wasn’t easy, but I fought hard to rebuild, and we found our way back to the top.
REVEILLE: [blank stare]
FISHER: Y’all do a lot with the cadets here, and I think that’s the perfect metaphor. This is a battle, and we’ve got to understand it as such. Our opponents are going to give everything they’ve got, and so too must we. Every day. No surrender. No retreat.
REVEILLE: [understands the word “treat”] [ears perk up, tail wags]
FISHER: I knew you’d understand. Thank you for your confidence in me - I won’t let you down.
REVEILLE: [w h e r e i s m y t r e a t]