Week 1

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Howdy!

The NCAA Soccer Season has begun!  But, undefeated Texas A&M will have to wait another week to open our home schedule of games, since hurricane Harvey has forced us to cancel our scheduled match for this Saturday against the Oregon Duck.  So, our new Home Opener will also be our annual Fish Camp Reunion Game vs OK State next Friday, September 1st at Ellis Field.

We opened the season last weekend in southern California with two shutout victories.  A&M knocked off defending WCC campion Pepperdine 1-0 in OT, and then knocked off San Diego 2-0.  With those wins, the Aggies are once again moving up in the National Rankings!  Below is an update on news surrounding the Aggie soccer program and my players.  I hope you like and will forward to friends you also think would enjoy the news.

That time of the year!

I love August because I’m a soccer fan, not just the coach of the Aggies.  Yes, the new college season has begun, but so too have the broadcasts of the Premier League in England/Wales and the Champions League across Europe.  Here in America, the MLS and NWSL seasons are starting to near playoff time, so all the games have added value.  And, all this soccer is available to us on a multitude of TV channels and video platforms!

It been truly amazing to witness the growth of soccer in America.  There are many contributing factors to the growth, but the bottom line is that soccer is here to stay!  Maybe you played soccer as a kid, or play(ed) FIFA on your gaming devise, or you started following women’s soccer because of the Aggies or the USA ‘99ers, or went to a game with a friend and became hooked as a live action fan, or… There really are so many reasons why the sport has taken hold.  But I just think Americans have become comfortable with the rules, athleticism, drama, and excitement of soccer, and that it’s a game without borders and IS played in every corner of the globe, yet available every day on TV, YouTube, and social media.

So, who is YOUR team? 

If you’re like me you have many favorites for several reasons.  I’m a Manchester United fan because I am a Sir Alex Ferguson fan and continue to follow and support the club he guided for 26 years.  I’m also a Real Madrid fan, mostly because my mother-in-law is a Madrid native, and I’m not a fan of Diego Simeone.  I’m a proud Texan and American, so I support FC Dallas, Houston Dynamo, Houston Dash (even though orange isn’t in my color wheel), as well as San Antonio FC and RGV Toros of USL. And, I am a HUGE supporter of our new local club, Cavalry FC, which has boys teams from 7 year old’s up to the U23 PDL team of the Houston Dynamo, which plays here in the Brazos Valley in the summer!

I obviously support our red, white, and blue USA National Teams of all ages and genders, and love to follow the American Outlaws supporters’ groups around the country and here in BCS!

And, I have become a fan of other special clubs, teams, and managers/coaches.  I am a fan of Arsene Wenger and the beauty his Arsenal teams play, but maddened that they’ve strayed from what made their undefeated “Invincibles” so special in the early 2000s.

I’m also a fan of special stadiums and soccer atmospheres. For example, I want to go to Dortmund and see the “yellow wall” and I’d love to experience a match from the Kop at Anfield in Liverpool (preferably one which Manchester United wins).  And, I hope to someday do a summer pilgrimage of MLS venues, much like baseball fans try to visit the many ballparks of minor and major league teams across America.  I’ve been to events in Portland, Vancouver, Houston, Dallas, LA, KC, Columbus, and San Jose. But I know that experiencing MLS games in Orlando, Seattle, Denver, NY/NJ, Philly, Minnesota, Chicago, Atlanta, and soon at LAFC and Miami would be a lot of fun!

I’ll be honest, I watch a LOT of games of all levels on TV and am always looking for cool items and ideas to potentially “borrow” and instill into our soccer environment at Texas A&M, both on and off the field.  We are proud of the reputation Ellis Field, the Maroon Militia, and the 12th Man have around the country, and can’t wait for Saturday’s Home Opener against the Oregon Ducks!

Hurricane Harvey is making things… difficult

You don’t mess with Mother Nature.  Unfortunately Hurricane #Harvey isn’t going to give us the opportunity to play this weekend, which is a shame.

We have been planning and looking forward to this Saturday night’s home opener for quite a while.  In addition to a great game against a terrific Pac12 opponent in Oregon, many cool “sideshows” were to have been happening around the event.  A big, youth tournament (Aggieland Friendship Cup) annually attracts dozens and dozens of great female youth teams from all around the state to College Station’s Veterans Park for games on Saturday and Sunday.  The tournament was purchasing nearly 2,000 tickets to the Aggies-Ducks game.  But alas, Harvey has cancelled that tournament.

Saturday was also scheduled to be Dorm Unity Night at Ellis Field, which would have attracted thousands of A&M dorm residents to the stadium to support the Aggies and potentially win big $ prizes.

Not playing the match will disrupt our team’s playing rhythm a bit.  Ellis Field has a state of the art playing surface and underground drainage system, so the rain wouldn’t have been a major factor.  But lightning and the unpredictability of a big storm like this was just too much of a risk to take for the players and fans who would have been placed in harm’s way.

At this time, I don’t have a replacement match scheduled, but will be looking around to try and find a quality opponent that might be available to slip into our already crowded fall schedule.  If we can find a game that can help our RPI and fit into our calendar, I will be sure to announce it here on www.CoachG.com

In the meantime, please be sure to check out the links to fun news, features, and videos about our players and program below!

Special features and Player Spotlights

soccer1

Texas A&M Soccer News

A&M Soccer Highlight Videos from this week

Thanks and Gig ‘em!

-Coach G