Though Steve Patterson is out as athletic director, the Arizona State athletic department has picked up where he left off and reportedly approved plans to play Texas A&M at Reliant Stadium on Sept. 5, 2015.
A report from FOX 26's Mark Berman on Twitter stated that "contracts have been approved" for the Pac-12 and SEC schools to meet at the home of the Houston Texans.
Contracts have been approved. Texas A&M will play Arizona State September 5, 2015 at Reliant Stadium.— Mark Berman (@MarkBermanFox26) November 21, 2013
Berman also reported that the game will be a part of the AdvoCare Texas Kickoff series. According to an article Berman wrote on Thursday afternoon, Texas A&M will be the home team and the game will be officiated by Big-12 officials.
Texas A&M-vs-ArizonaSt.Sept.5,2015 @ Reliant Stadium.AdvoCare Texas Kickoff. Aggies will wear white,roof closed.Plan is2use Big 12 officials— Mark Berman (@MarkBermanFox26) November 21, 2013
The Advocare Texas Kickoff series began in 2013 as the Oklahoma State Sooners defeated the Mississippi State Bulldogs 21-3 and will continue next year when LSU meets Wisconsin.
House of Sparky first reported that the Arizona State athletic department was in talks to play a BCS conference opponent at a neutral site in October when Steve Patterson agreed to an interview outside of AT&T Stadium in Dallas, Texas.
In the interview, Patterson hinted about the possibility of a nonconference game being added to the 2015 schedule when he said, "Hopefully we'll get the contract done in the next month to be able to announce that. That will be an exciting game, a one-off in another NFL stadium."
News that Patterson accepted the athletic director position at Texas broke on Nov. 5 but the Arizona State athletic department was able to complete the process of scheduling the game just three weeks later.
The Sun Devils needed a strong nonconference opponent for the 2015 season after the LSU Tigers dropped Arizona State from its 2015 schedule in hopes of playing in-state opponent Tulane in the Superdome to start the year. Arizona State is currently scheduled to host the University of New Mexico on Sept. 5, 2015, so the Sun Devils will likely look to renegotiate with the Lobos.
As of now, the Arizona State athletic department has not released a statement announcing that plans for the game have been finalized.