For over 100 years, the Yell Leaders have embodied the unique Aggie Spirit for which Texas A&M is so well known. The Yell Leaders are comprised of five students that are elected by the student body. They are the official spirit organization of the university and they lead Aggie fans in “yells” during athletic and other university events. Unlike cheerleaders, the Yell Leaders do not perform gymnastic feats. Instead they use a variety of hand signals, called “pass backs”, to direct and intensify the crowd. The Texas Aggie Yell Leaders represent the 12th Man at Aggie athletic events, serve as campus ambassadors to A&M and Aggie Mother’s Clubs across Texas and the U.S., and regularly make appearances at campus-wide events for current, new, and prospective students, former students, campus administrators, visitors, and dignitaries. Midnight Yell Practice has been dubbed a “College Football Bucket List” item and is one of Texas A&M’s most well-known traditions.
When A&M was an all-male military college in 1907, students often invited guests from Texas Women’s University to take the train to College Station and attend Aggie football games. Then as now, only a certain number of guest tickets were available, and these would be handed out based on seniority, so freshmen were rarely able to bring guests to the games.
According to legend, the Aggies were being out-scored so badly during one football game that the TWU students were threatening to leave the game due to boredom. To prevent this, the upperclassmen ordered the freshmen, or “fish,” to find a way to entertain their guests. The freshmen raided a janitor’s closet and changed into the white coveralls they found there and began leading the crowd in yells from the track area in front of the stands. The freshmen got so much attention from the students of TWU that it was decided that only upperclassmen would be allowed to participate in this entertainment in the future.
Today, the Texas Aggie Yell Leaders have evolved into a team of five upperclassmen, three seniors and two juniors. Student body elections to choose the Aggie Yell Leaders are held annually, and it is not uncommon for more students to vote for yell leader candidates than to vote in the Student Body President elections.
The Yell Leaders attend all home and away football games, all home basketball games, all home volleyball games, all home soccer matches, and post-season football, basketball, and volleyball. They can always be found on the sidelines of the playing field in front of the student section. Additionally, the Yell Leaders can be seen annually at the Texas A&M Coach’s Nights, all new student conferences, all Fish Camp sessions, and numerous campus events hosted by student organizations and university departments.
Memo Salinas ’22
Howdy! I am an Agribusiness major from Laredo, Texas and a member of the Corps of Cadets, in Squadron 17. I’m proud to be a second generation Aggie and continue the legacy that the many Aggies in my family have set before me. I grew up coming to Aggie football games, watching the Corps of Cadets march into Kyle Field, and learning about Aggie spirit and tradition through my father. As a student, I have been blessed to experience the unifying Aggie Spirit by partaking in the ceremony for George H.W. Bush, attending traditions such as Aggie Muster and Silver Taps, and standing with the rest of the 12th Man during the historic 7 OT win. As a Yell Leader, it is my goal to show and spread the love and passion I have for A&M, welcome all Aggies to the Aggie Family, and help them experience the spirit that can ne’er be told.
Weston Porter ’21
Howdy! I am an Industrial Distribution Major from Dallas, TX, and a member of the Corps of Cadets in Company E-1. I am a fourth-generation Aggie along with my three siblings. For my whole life, all I have ever known is maroon. I never really knew why being an Aggie was such a big deal when I was younger, but my eyes were opened when I arrived in College Station and got to live out the Aggie life. If there is one thing I want to share as a Yell Leader it is this: Aggies are a strong community always there to help those in need. I believe everyone needs to understand that they always have a friend right next to them to talk to. Let it be in a class lecture or a Texas A&M football game. Aggies are always here for each other and that will never change.
Keller Cox ’21*
Howdy! I’m a Construction Science major from Houston, Texas, and a member of the Corps of Cadets in Squadron 17. I am a first generation Aggie and knew very little about A&M growing up. In fact, it wasn’t until 8th grade that I went to my first Aggie Football game. Then, after watching my brother decide to attend and hearing of his experience, I knew A&M was where I was meant to be. Since my fish year in the Corps, I’ve learned that it is our traditions and the people that make A&M so special. From my buddies in Squadron 17, and friends and community in Fish Aides and Aggie Men’s Club, I’ve seen first hand the spirit that can ne’er be told. Without these things, this would just be another school. As a yell leader, my goal is to both share and show that same spirit that called me here in the first place.
*Head Yell Leader
Jacob Huffman ’21
Howdy! I am a Sports Conditioning Major from Weatherford, TX and a member of the Corps of Cadets in Company H-1. I’m a first generation Aggie who was drawn to A&M initially because of a scholarship from the Marine Corps. Very quickly, however, I realized that this university embodies the same core values that I hold dearly, and I fell in love. Values such as integrity, respect, and grit set Aggies apart from the rest, and it is a privilege to be able to promote the values that make this university so special. As a Yell Leader it is my ambition to help others feel the same love for this university and ideals that make us all Aggies.
Mason Graham ’22
Howdy! I am a Finance major from Dallas, Texas and a member of the Corps of Cadets in Company L-1. I’m proud to be a third-generation Aggie and continue the Aggie legacy that my family has set before me. I always dreamed of going to Texas A&M, and the years spent going to Midnight Yell, and yelling on the Aggies on Saturdays with my family solidified why I wanted to attend Texas A&M. Since arriving on campus, I have begun to understand why my family loves Texas A&M and its traditions so much. I have experienced the Aggie spirit through my buddies in L-1, my time on Aggie Muster Committee, and the many other traditions that unite us as Aggies. As a yell leader, my goal is to serve Texas A&M by sharing the spirit that ne’er be told with all Aggies and allow each Aggie to find their place in the Texas A&M community.