The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

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Touchdown in Aggieland

Photo by Photo by C. Morgan Engel

New Texas A&M head football coach Jimbo Fisher throws up a Gig ’em while arriving at Easterwood Airport on Sunday afternoon.

On a cloudy Sunday in College Station, the man who will lead Texas A&M into a new chapter of Aggie football history arrived.
Jimbo Fisher’s first footsteps in Texas as A&M’s new head coach included the playing of the Aggie War Hymn by the Fightin’ Texas Aggie Band, a group of excited A&M fans and even a maroon carpet that led from the steps of the jet to a car waiting on the runway.
Fisher, accompanied by A&M Athletic Director Scott Woodward and University President Michael K. Young, stepped out of a maroon and white Gulfstream jet owned by A&M regent Robert L. Albritton, Class of 1971.
Fisher comes to Aggieland exactly one week after A&M fired Kevin Sumlin, following A&M’s 45-21 loss to LSU the night before to close out the regular season.
The week leading up to Fisher’s arrival at Easterwood Airport on Sunday was filled with copious amounts of drama, speculation and excitement.
As Fisher prepared for the Seminoles’ last game of the season, which was postponed due to Hurricane Irma in September, multiple reports indicated that A&M and Woodward were actively pursuing Fisher — and only Fisher.
Before the Aggies could actively offer Fisher the job, the Board of Regents announced on Monday, Nov. 27 they would hold a special meeting to discuss the legal and personnel issues of A&M’s football program, including those relating to appointment of a new head coach, according to the official agenda. However, that meeting ultimately wouldn’t take place until Thursday, Nov. 30.
In Tallahassee, Fisher continued to go through his regular routine, including his weekly call-in show. During the show, a fan introduced as Mike from Tallahassee questioned Fisher’s loyalty amid several reports suggesting he was considering A&M. However, before Fisher could respond, the fan was rushed out by event security.
Thursday, after nearly three hours of deliberation deep inside the Board of Regent offices within the Memorial Student Center, A&M chancellor John Sharp gave no indication of what was discussed in the meeting. But, he did say there were a few coaches the Board had in mind.
“We have candidates,” Sharp said. “It’s just not something we can talk about. It’s sensitive with the coaches and the others.”
Later in the day, as the drama continued to grow, it was discovered that there was as a plane from Tallahassee scheduled to land in College Station early Friday morning, prompting the press on both sides of the saga to stake out their respective airports.
In Florida, reporters were stationed outside the football offices on the FSU campus and Fisher’s house on Friday. In a dramatic turn of events, a Christmas tree was pictured sitting on the curb of the Fisher residence. This prompted many people in Tallahassee to believe that Fisher had in fact decided to leave Florida’s panhandle for the greener pastures of Texas.
Finally, midway through Friday, the speculation came to an end when the news broke that Fisher had resigned from FSU and would not coach in the Seminoles’ game against UL-Monroe to take the job at A&M.
According to ESPN’s Mark Schlabach, Fisher’s deal with the Aggies is a $7.5 million deal for 10 years, making Fisher’s contract the largest in college football history in terms of total value. This also makes Fisher the second highest paid coach in college football behind Alabama’s Nick Saban.
Florida State President John Thrasher released a statement on Friday in the hours following the initial reports confirming Fisher’s departure from the FSU football program.
“Today, Jimbo Fisher informed me he has accepted an offer to become the next head football coach at Texas A&M University,” Thrasher said. “I believe Texas A&M is getting one of the best coaches in college football.”
Fisher is set to be officially announced as the Aggies’ head coach Monday morning in a press conference that will be held in the Hall of Champions inside Kyle Field.

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