Two of the most explosive offenses in college football are set for a pair of future meetings, as the Texas A&M Aggies and UCLA Bruins have inked a home-and-home series.
The UCLA athletic department announced several future nonconference matchups Thursday, highlighted by a home-and-home series with Texas A&M in 2016 and 2017.
The Bruins will also meet San Diego State in 2019 and 2020 and Rutgers in 2020 and 2021.
The Aggies will play host to the Bruins on Sept. 3, 2016. It'll be UCLA's first appearance at Kyle Field, which is currently undergoing renovations that will increase its capacity to 102,500 for the 2015 season. A&M will then visit the Rose Bowl on Sept. 2 for the 2017 season opener.
UCLA athletic director Dan Guerrero made a statement in the release, citing the increase in emphasis on strength of schedule that will come with the College Football Playoff.
"Facing tough nonconference competition is a necessity with the new playoff system beginning this year," said Guerrero. "We are excited to add home-and-home series with both Texas A&M and San Diego State to a future schedule that already includes a traditional Big Ten/Pac-12 series with Rutgers."
Texas A&M made the announcement on its athletic department website as well, where director of athletics Eric Hyman lauded the meetings between the two elite programs at two famed venues:
We are very pleased this series was able to come together and provides our program with an exciting, premier non-conference matchup against UCLA. UCLA brings one of the top programs from the West Coast to the redeveloped Kyle Field in Aggieland, and for our Aggie team and the 12th Man to have the chance to play in the Rose Bowl is a historic opportunity.
Last year, the Aggies cancelled series with UCLA's Pac-12 Conference rivals USC and Oregon, making the addition of UCLA an intriguing one.
Bryan Fischer, who covers college football for NFL.com, suggested that the move could be a showcase between Adidas schools. Both A&M and UCLA are sponsored by Adidas, while USC and Oregon are Nike programs.
Aesthetics aside, this will surely be one of the most highly anticipated nonconference matchups in the coming years with both programs building strong for the future.
It'll also be a great contest featuring representation from college football's two best conferences—the SEC and the Pac-12—an encounter that rarely happens since the two leagues don't share a bowl tie-in.
Per UCLA's release, the two storied programs have met just four times. The most recent tilt took place in the 1998 Cotton Bowl, where the Bruins emerged as 29-23 victors. A&M won the first two meetings in 1940 and 1951, while UCLA won the third in 1955, leaving the series knotted at 2-2.
The future matchups could carry playoff implications and will almost certainly be electric bouts featuring blue-chip quarterbacks.
|UCLA and Texas A&M Offensive Ranks|
|Total '13||Scoring '13||Total '12||Scoring '12|
By then, UCLA is likely to be led by either Asiantii Woulard, the No. 1 dual-threat quarterback from the 2013 recruiting class, or Josh Rosen. Rosen, the No. 1 pro-style quarterback for 2015, will announce his decision later this month and is perceived by many to be a UCLA lean.
Meanwhile, A&M is likely to be led by Kyle Allen, who was the top pro-style QB in the 2014 class and is currently enrolled in College Station and battling for the open starting job.
Regardless, these vaunted offenses are sure to light up the scoreboard when they tangle in the coming years.
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