As Robert points out a couple clicks down, there's plenty blame to go around for the Cotton Bowl leaving Dallas, which became official this afternoon. But there shouldn't be one iota of surprise that it has come to this: The stadium is old, the game is tired, and lethargic city officials tried too little too late.
End result: Starting January 2, 2010, you'll be watching two spare middle-of-the-pack conference finishers playing in Arlington, just after the Dallas Cowboys have finished their first season in their billion-dollar building.
By 2011 don't be shocked if the Cotton Bowl Classic is upgraded to a BCS game. As for the Cotton Bowl stadium itself, I know Dallas voters and officials approved $50 million in renovations. But...why? Texas-OU will also move to Arlington after its contract expires in 2010, leaving the grand old stadium with a crown jewel of, um, Grambling-Prairie View A&M.
As for the blame, I too point most of my fingers at Her Highness. She was strongly against the American Airlines Center, yet proudly celebrated on its steps when the NHL All-Star Game rolled through town last month. And she continually unveils her sports stupidity by referring to the Cotton Bowl as a "league," college football showdowns as "faceoffs" and recently demanding that potential Super Bowl events be held in Dallas because "the lead dog should get the lead events...," even though the game would be played in Arlington.
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That ignorance can't single-handedly crush a deal, but ... no, come to think of it, yes, it can. Our mayor just doesn't "get" sports. And now, her city has lost them. --Richie Whitt