Yes. Parents would brag about getting their children into either UT or TAMU; they are both top dogs. Yet UT is a tad more desirable, enough to warrant an exemption form 10% automatic admit rule that applies to every other public school in the state. So bright students would expand meaningful additional effort and no small amount of stress to get into UT-Austin vs. "settling" for TAMU. Even though, as both schools are massive, highly research productive, universities with top facilities and resources, there's no meaningful difference in educational experience these two schools provide. Any difference could only be due to particular student's interests and intangibles like "clicking" with a particular professor (which can favor UT, TAMU, or any of the other 10 good schools in state alone). And in addition, as Neuhaus said, TAMU actually enjoys MORE name recognition out of state. Just shows how completely irrational competitive admissions game actually is.