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Sunday, December 30th, 2012

Aggies Hold First AT&T Cotton Bowl Classic Practice

Photo By: Photo by Ian Halperin/CBAA
The Aggies practice at Ford Stadium, one of the events leading up to the 2013 AT&T Cotton Bowl Classic between the Oklahoma Sooners and Texas A&M Aggies at Cowboys Stadium.

Dallas – The No. 9 Texas A&M Aggies got back to football basics for their first practice for the 77th AT&T Cotton Bowl Classic.

Under brisk outdoor conditions, the Aggies donned full pads for a nearly 60-minute workout on the practice field adjacent to Ford Stadium on the SMU campus. The spirit of the 12th Man was in full force as a swarm of Texas A&M fans welcomed the squad prior to its first workout in preparation to take on the No. 11 Oklahoma Sooners (10-2, 8-1 Big 12 Conference).

“I thought we had great energy at practice. With all the fans and spectators that were here, I was kind of shocked at the number of people that were here. I thought that created some energy for us too,” said head coach Kevin Sumlin. “We bounced around and weren’t out here very long but that’s kind of the way we’ve done things up to this point.”

The practice was a return of sorts as Ford Stadium was the site of the team’s first win of the 2012 season, a 48-3 victory over SMU. That win sparked a five-game winning streak before a 24-19 loss to LSU on Oct. 20. A&M rebounded from that defeat to go another five-game winning streak to close the season.

Two former Aggies, Rod Harris and Ken Reeves, were among those watching the A&M workout. Harris was an All-Southwest Conference performer who starred for A&M in 1985-89 and Reeves played in College Station from 1981-84. The team capped off practice in celebratory fashion with happy birthday wishes and a Gatorade bath for defensive coordinator Mark Snyder.

Tonight, the Aggies enjoyed a private team function and then caught some National Basketball Association action between the Dallas Mavericks and San Antonio Spurs at the American Airlines Center.

Snyder, junior DE Damontre Moore and seniors DL Spencer Nealy, LB Sean Porter, LB Jonathan Stewart and DB Steven Terrell will conduct an interview session with the media Monday morning at the Omni Mandalay Hotel in Irving. A&M is back on the practice field later in the day with a traditional “Tuesday” practice session at Highland Park High School in nearby University Park.

The 77th AT&T Cotton Bowl Classic will be held on Friday, Jan. 4 on FOX. Telecast starts at 6:30 p.m. with kickoff scheduled for 7:10 p.m. Gus Johnson will handle play-by-play duties with Charles Davis as the color analyst.

For the first time the AT&T Cotton Bowl Classic will be heard around the world on ESPN Radio. Providing play-by-play is Brad Sham, the “Voice of the Dallas Cowboys”. Ed Cunningham will provide color commentary and Ian Fitzsimmons will report from the sidelines.

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