This morning I got a call from a listener who pulled a GREAT April Fool's joke on her Red Raider son.

She made up a letter purportedly from the president of the University of Texas that claimed that UT was purchasing Texas Tech. You can read the letter below. And remember that it was all done on official University of Texas letterhead with a picture of the president and some kind of UT mission statement on the border. It looked VERY official.

By the way, if you're a Texas fan or alumni...or lawyer...please remember that this is only a joke:

Hi Landon,

Here is the April Fool's Day prank my UT husband and I played on our Texas Tech son.

Dear Friends:

As I travel around the state, I frequently meet Texans and UT alumni who want high-quality public education and higher education for their children and grandchildren. They often ask, what will it take for our state to improve?


We cannot escape the fact that Texas spends less of its Gross Domestic Product (GDP) on education than other states. In 2006, Texas' spending on higher education and public schools amounted to 3.35% of our GDP. Michigan spent 4.49%, California spent 4.24%, and North Carolina spent 4.05%.* These differences may seem slight, but as an illustration, if we added 1% of our state GDP to education spending, it would generate $8.5 billion. Adding 1/10 of 1% would provide $850 million annually.

It is also worth noting that California spends almost twice as much on higher education than Texas, and it has done so consistently for many years, even though its population is only a third larger. That investment has surely played a role in California's GDP, which is 75% greater than ours.

Simply put, our competitors are investing more in education, and they have systematically done so for years. We are far behind.

I understand that our elected officials are working hard to control state spending, but Texas is ranked 35th out of 50 states in the percentage of citizens with a college education. Only 24.5% of Texans age 25 or older are college graduates, and the current projection by the Texas State Data Center is for that figure to decline by 2040. Texans deserve better. We need to increase higher education capacity, and we need to fund excellence at the state's existing national research universities. In the months ahead I'll be repeating this message around the state.

As our first step, The University of Texas is pleased to announce we have purchased Texas Tech University for 1.5 billion dollars. In September of 2012 Texas Tech University will henceforth be called The University of Texas-Lubbock, or UTL. The Lubbock athletic department will be renamed The Shorthorns with burnt orange and black team colors. The two campuses will continue their rivalry with all games being held in Austin. I want to express my gratitude to those who have made this acquisition possible. The acquisition will be announced to the media Monday, but I wanted all local donors to be apprised of how we have spent their money.

Thank you for all you do for The University of Texas at Austin.

Bill Powers
The University of Texas at Austin

That's awesome! Did you see a better April Fool's prank this year?

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