Auld Lang Sune

While trying to reconcile some of the disappointment and discontent about the relative position of the Houston Cougar football team, there are a few determining factors that get lost amongst the lesser factors such as on-the-field talent, quality wins, and football petigree. UH’s failure to thrive can’t be ascribed to these attributes or items such as another school out to get UH, a conference or TV network that doesn’t want UH, or a coach that moves on and leaves UH with 4 hungry kids and crops in the field.

Yes, we’ve had some bad times Lucille. But, if not for any of the above reasons, then what?

When kids go to college, many seek the campus experience with lots of students everywhere- walking to class; food court, dorms, and around town. Kids everywhere at a time in their lives when liberalism and openness to ideas is at a high, and where going out on the town means being vulnerable and silly in what is hopefully a safe campus or college town. After college, what do these wage earning season ticket holders remember? Their hard work, and the good times they had in their dorms, walking to class, going to games, going out on the town, and growing up in an institution that they forever identity with.

This identity was on display when my friends made me go with him to the Aggies versus Kansas state. I was secretly rooting for KState but the faithfulness of the Aggies army, including grandpa’s to newborns would have made cult leader david Koresh blush.

In addition to having a primary affliction manifested in a lack of student identity with the institution (due to urban sprawl or commuter campus of wherever, UH is so disadvantaged by being in the ghetto. Maybe you’re totally comfortable going to games, but more often than not my head is on a swivel walking to and from my car. It’s not a place you would want your daughter being vulnerable and silly like 6th street.

Finally, I think UH is unlucky. UH is good better than 50% of the power five but somehow they got kicked out before the party started and can’t get back in because ESPN is losing its customer base and the keys are dry.

Unless UH can address their urban commuter profile, or make the area around campus more desirable, then today’s students and tomorrow’s boosters will continue to demonstrate apathy at the turnstile while the rest of us raise a toast to auld Lang sane in a stadium or bar that still has seats for the taking.

Scott I respectfully disagree the area around UH being a problem.

Gentrification. Sure go ahead and destroy the thing that makes UH unique and the same as every other Power 5 school. Yes it is in a ghetto but have you taken the time to see other parts of the 3rd ward? It’s not all the same. Living in the ghetto isn’t a problem it’s a challenge and one the UH is willing to take on. Why try to destroy an ugly part of the neighborhood when you can improve it?

I’m never one to shy away from the reality of the world. Ghettos exist. Sorry that not everyone gets to live a life of comfort in a secure one race neighborhood. That’s something I learned once I left UH for grad school in North Texas. This institution taught me diversity is important and an advantage. That’s why I love this city. It spits in the face of everyone that ever wanted to be comfortable. Don’t think you can just move a ghetto to an area and let it become another persons problem. That’s ignorance and shameful.

You speak of liberalism and openness but you forget that just because people of low income resort to a different lifestyle doesn’t make them not human. This city is about people of different backgrounds coming together and it’s at our university’s front door. What better way to educate a kid about the differences in the world than on his commute everyday to school?

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Jeez, I feel like I just read something from 1995!. Some people under appreciate the last 10yrs and the strides the program and, most importantly, the University, have made. This is not the mid-90s when I was on campus. This is a full blown renaissance compared to those bleak times. it’s not even the same commuter school nor is the 3rd Ward what it once was. Kstate vs A&M? When was that?
You keep cryin’ over old UH stereotypes, I’ll be at TDECU, Fertitta Center and Schroeder Park watching my Coogs.


@Scotti, UH is addressing these topics and have been pushing to enhance the image of not only the University, but the area around it. It will take time as many presidents and admin didn’t focus on those items prior to Chancellor Khator, but the image of the University as well as outreach with the Third Ward community is improving rapidly.

You mention Aggie as an example of the college experience, however, they have 60 years on UH as an institution and athletic program which has led to the ability to garner more state funds as well as have advantages that haven’t been afforded to UH as of yet. We are just hitting the stage of having grandparents passing down their knowledge to their grandkids and its starting to show in attendance, donations, infrastructure, etc. This will only improve as we now have the 2nd most on-campus beds in the state which means more will get the traditional college experience while at UH and have that connection that you talk about.

On a lighter note, I find it funny that you mentioned liberalism of the college experience and then used Aggie as an example. The corps may be knocking on your door soon for that. It’s also funny that you compared Aggie to a cult; when I was visiting colleges out of high school, Aggie was one of the ones I went to. My exact words when driving away from College Station were along the lines of it being “one big cult.” Only place I visited where they basically only talked about their traditions and how it was expected you’d start donating to the cause as soon as you graduated…multiple times. That was 90% of the tour. One of the strangest experiences I’ve ever had.

Lastly, our biggest headache is getting over the hump in the state of Texas when so many in Austin perceive us as a threat, both athletically and academically. While we still have a ways to go academically to catch up to UT-Austin, it’s happening and the decision makers are starting to take notice (i.e. UT-Houston, Big 12 expansion fiasco). Luckily, our political support is the largest its ever been and continues to grow and we have big-money boosters that are throwing their weight around a bit. Athletically, we’ve always been a threat to the folks in Austin going back to the Yeoman years. The bleachergate fiasco was an attempt to kill our athletic programs off for good as the sharks smelled blood in the water, but our resiliency has kept us alive on that front. Now they take our coach after BS’ing us about expansion in another attempt to keep us down and we’ll see how that works out, but we turned the tables on them a bit with the CMA hire. The future is bright.

And to finish off on another tangent, you mention the “ghetto” around UH, have you been to Austin? The area around UT isn’t exactly West University and one of the talking points that Austin legislators have been hitting McRaven on is outreach by UT to the surrounding community.

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I’ve been saying for awhile UH needs to implement Imminent Domain on the area south of Scott Street and west of I-45. Buy everyone out, tear down the shanties, and build houses that can be rented by students, teachers, employees, etc. Those few square blocks are completely unacceptable.

Would you rather have your daughter at Baylor?


With all due respect, and I do appreciate your thoughts on this, but your thoughts are misplaced. Specifically, they are outdated. This would be appropriate if Bill Clinton was still in office. As UH Alum, Bauer Class of 14, your comments are outdated. Have you been on campus recently? I do get this “commuter” thing from good old timers on occasion, but the facts speak for themselves. Go see the Campus. The world is not flat.


I agree with you.The prior comment makes me a little sick. Why is the bias that the community is “ghetto” and therefore not safe? It is not Ghetto, it is part of the city’s culture. That was very clear bias and profiling.

The facts also state that UH is far safer than our friends up north. (UTa & aTm) @Scotti


Scotti have you ever been to USC? USC is one of the best Universities in the world. We do agree right?
Until recently right next to the campus, the Sports arena and the Coliseum had more to do with junkies than with doctorates or Heisman trophies.
I will be blunt. Your comment is flat out racist. You don’t like the area? You don’t feel comfortable walking around? Put on your big boys pants. Be proud that we can inspire local residents and children to thrive for the best. Should a University be in a village, away from everything, away from reality? That’s another debate for another day. I went to School in the late 80’s/early 90’s. I had classes at night or went to the library late. NEVER did I have an issue walking to my car or other buildings. I have not been on campus lately but I can assure you that today’s U of H looks pretty awesome. I can assure you that even tough I speak Spanish I feel 100% more secure on our campus than at USC’s.
Embrace where we are. It speaks volume of what a University can achieve without any help like the PUF.
I will add for any potential visitor or possible recruit is that we represent what America is all about. Regardless of color, financial background, religious affiliations YOU/WE can succeed.
Are you with me Scotti? I hope you are.


I have been to USC and you are correct. There is clear bias in the original post, while not totally untrue, it is an older stereotype of UH.


while i don’t agree with the assertion that the UH proximity to the 3rd ward is as bad as our poster makes it out to be, it’s still not as comfortable as west u.
we still have a way to go but things are much better than when i was on campus…but i think using the racist term here is totally out of line.

i will say, that my daughter who is away in Ky on a scholarship for soccer at a smaller school misses the game day football experience at UH. That should tell you something about how far we have come…

She identifies UH as a place that has a favorable student experience on campus. she has friends at many of the universities in Texas and SEC and thinks UH student life is comparable to many traditional state schoos.

Was this post copied and pasted from 1996?

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I live about a mile from campus, just on the other side of 288 down Elgin. The area around UH is already changing for the better organically, not just through gentrification but also through 3rd Ward redevelopment and beautification projects like the Project Row Houses and Emancipation Park. I like the urban roots of our school and I think that’s a selling feature more than a detractor. How many college football stadiums have that downtown view? How many are within 5 miles of dozens of Fortune 500 companies? How many have the food, culture and pro sports scenes that we have?

I do think that we have a homeless problem as a city though. The fact that our mayor (a UH alum!) and police force haven’t done anything about a vagrant tent city being built under a freeway a mile from campus disgusts me. I think the organic growth and beautification of Houston in total is a draw to this crowd. I used to live in Miami a few years and it was a similar scene there.

For many years I have read posts describing the area around our campus as ghetto, garbage, dangerous, inhospitable, disgusting, trash, graveyard and many others that you could add. The fact is that it is an area not as affluent as others. So what? Not every single campus of the world looks like Westwood, West U or Pasadena Cal Tech. Our detractors constantly use it to trash or demean us. Let’s call a spade a spade. The real meaning behind these comments is plain racism. Yes, I am being 100% honest with what I am describing here. Enough already, these comments further portray divisiveness. You don’t like the area? Do something about it. Mrs Khator has done an amazing job. Scotti why don’t you ask the atm brass to send us a check form their PUF share. I am sure we can put it to good use.


Don’t like the area around UH and want to see it change? Invest, move in, set an example of what can be done.


Lets call a spade a spade and stop beating about the bush . You insinuate that since UH is located near in a poor black neighborhood, it’s an undesirable place to go to college. If your only experience at UH is paranoia of black people coming out the shadows to get you, then perhaps UT or A&M suits you just fine.

No, UH would not be UH if it was located in Katy or Cypress for that matter wouldn’t it. And for the commuter comment, UH is blue collar university. I have nothing but respect for folks who put themselves through college.

UH football experience is unique and I wouldn’t trade for a strange, mouth breathing cult known as the Aggies.

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My youngest is a junior at UH. He’s been on campus the entire time. He loves it. It is true that UH isn’t surrounded by clubs and eating places but the easy access to downtown via METRO Rail has opened up a lot of places to UH students. I had a parent of a high school junior ask me about the area around UH and whether of r not the campus was safe. He is a graduate of tOSU as is my oldest son so I asked him if he felt safe at the Barnes and Noble on High Street adjacent to tOSU. He said yes. I asked him what it looks like 5-6 blocks east of there. He said crack houses.

A lot of big city campuses are going to have some rough areas nearby, but the safety of college campuses is still relatively good in comparison to a lot of America. People always have to be smart about where they go and what they do. Being on campus at UH has been a blast for my youngest. He’s formed the kinds of friendships and had the kind of fun you can only have on a college campus. UH should get a look from anybody who has an interest in a program offered there to see how it stacks up. UH will most likely exceed expectations and be very competitive in most areas.

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Sorry man but I’m going to pile on with everyone else. I think your post is really poor an misinformed. Previous stats were placed above comparing TU to U of H etc, but to spin off of Dan think about Baylor. Baylor is “prestigious” etc etc etc but it is a dumpster fire for safety.

Regardless, when I read your comments it reads like the media who has said that in the past and has never been to one of our games. They just say that because of hearing it from someone else spreading rhetoric.

Here is something else that is fact. Because of U of H, crime in the Third Ward goes down. There are people that work the games, etc. and contribute to the University as well as the University supplying them with a part time job. When we tore down Robertson and played at NRG for a year crime went up. We get TDECU and crime goes back down. I think we are good for each other, I think there is nothing to fear, I think we are symbiotic, and I wouldn’t change a thing.

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while i can’t defend most of what scotti wrote, we all see it as rather dated thinking. I will defend his comments from those wanting to play the race card here.
all he said was he did not feel safe walking to and from the parking areas at night. he referenced that the school location was in the ghetto…that’s just a fact, we proudly proclaim the 3rd ward defense named for the tuff neighborhood, if your gonna own it then own it.
would i feel safer on 6th street at night then a UH parking lot on scott street…yes is the answer and there is nothing racist about that.
there is an awful lot of overused racisit name calling these days…really don’t need it here.

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All I know is that I have been going out to UH at night for various events for some 68 years now, and I have never seen a single criminal incident anywhere near the campus! In addition, I am a night owl, and I go out to eat every night rather late. I often drive through the Third Ward late at night, and I have also never seen a single criminal incident there either. Make of that what you will!

Much of the criminal reputation of the area has been created by our enemies among the members of the old SWC - the usual suspects.