Dallas Cowboys executive vice president Stephen Jones, on a conference call Tuesday to promote the Sept. 4 Cowboys Classic at Cowboys Stadium, the college football opener that pits TCU against Oregon State, said he ultimately wants more college football games played at JerryWorld each season than Cowboys games.
The stadium will host four major college football games this season, one shy of last year's total during the mammoth venue's inaugural season (the Texas Tech-Baylor game, at Cowboys Stadium last year, is at the Cotton Bowl this season). This year's slate again includes the Dec. 4 Big 12 championship, the league's final title game before it drops to 10 teams for the 2011 season.
While that means Cowboys Stadium will lose a marquee matchup, Jones said he foresees no problem attracting more games and a large number of them.
"I can tell you that we’re always going to be very aggressive in terms of our approach to hosting these games," Jones said. "We believe this is a hotbed for football. I think schools like to be in our area, playing in front of all the potential players that could be recruits for those schools. Even though right now it doesn’t look like there’s going to be a Big 12 championship game played, we think in due time those things take care of themselves and we’re going to have many opportunities to host games."
He's probably right. In 2013, Notre Dame will play Arizona State and rumors abound that Alabama and Michigan are working on a deal to play underneath the enormous JerryWorld video board in 2012.
Those games are likely just the beginning of annual pilgrimages for other major conference schools seeking to gain a foothold in Texas' fertile recruiting grounds, the main reason why Jones said he has not and will not lobby the Big 12 to reconsider its stance and push to continue the title game.
"We obviously respect our relationships with these people and it’s certainly not our place to tell them how to run their business," Jones said. "We just think in due time that there’s going to be a lot of great football to be played in college and a lot of it played in the North Texas area, and because we have the building that we have we think it’s going to be a natural to host these games and eventually we’ll get the number of games that we want to have."
The 2010-11 college football schedule at Cowboys Stadium:
Sept. 4: TCU vs. Oregon State, 6:45 p.m.
Oct. 9: Texas A&M vs. Arkansas, TBA
Dec. 4: Big 12 championship, 7 p.m.
Jan. 7: Cotton Bowl, 7 p.m.