Texas A&M's move to the SEC is on hold, but it's still quite likely that the Aggies could join the conference in the near future, and according to some, it all comes back to Presidential candidate Rick Perry. After the SEC's statement on Sunday promised "no action", there have been plenty of subsequent reports to indicate the realignment process was paused, not stopped altogether.
So what does this have to do with one of the Republican party's leading candidates for the 2012 Presidential nomination? Everything, according to one political writer. Rick Perry, currently the governor of Texas, is the most prominent Aggie alum in the state, and probably the country.
By championing his alma mater's move to the SEC, Perry has a way to ingratiate himself to the Deep South--a demographic that could prove invaluable come election time. As Paul Burka writes, "It is a way for Perry to validate himself as a southerner. In one bold move–and don’t think for a moment that Perry didn’t orchestrate this–Perry has used A&M to leverage himself into prominence in the South, an area where a Republican presidential candidate must run well. The A&M culture and the southern culture mesh well."
Sure, from afar, it's pretty preposterous to think a politician would use college football to get himself elected President, but then... The only game more cynical than college football is politics. Right?