November 7th, 2012 at 12:09 PM ^

One of the first college games I remember watching was the "Game of the Century" between undefeated Arkansas and UT in 1969.  I remember that President Nixon was at the game and it was a very BIG DEAL in a day and age when big deals weren't as common as they are today.

Hook em horns Darrell.

03 Blue 07

November 7th, 2012 at 12:25 PM ^

I work for a Texas alum, and he and I have often discussed the historical similarities between our two programs. To wit, it was a Michigan man who, I believe, served as UT's first head football coach and taught them the game. From what my boss has described, Mr. Royal was a great patriarch of the Texas football community, revered in a way much like our own Mr. Schembechler. I'm sure DKR will be missed by the Texas family.


November 7th, 2012 at 12:29 PM ^

He's the winningest coach in Longhorn history at 167-47-2, including an 8-7-1 bowl record. He was also AFCA Coach Of The Year twice, I believe. Quite an impressive run as the head coach at Texas, then as athletic director and an assistant to the UT President after that.

Favorite Royalism: "Don't matter what they throw at us. Only angry people win football games."

RIP, Darrell Royal

Section 1

November 7th, 2012 at 12:42 PM ^

In fact, they were close colleagues professionally.  In the era before insanely competitive recruiting wars, college coaches regarded each other as fellow professionals in education.  Bo and Coach Royal were friends and had a huge amount of mutual respect.

Sten Carlson

November 7th, 2012 at 12:48 PM ^

I met today the man several times here in Austin, and my wife is close with his wife Edith. Football lost one of its all time greats! It was sad to see him recently as he wa totally out of it, yet they'd wheel him out at charity functions and such.

Hopefully he's making all those candy asses in heaven do down-ups til they puke!

Hook 'me coach!


November 7th, 2012 at 12:52 PM ^

It was actually Emory Bellard (of Texas A&M and Miss State fame) who developed the 3 -back wishbone option offense, but Royal got the credit and Texas teams were very tough to stop defensively.  

It's noteworthy to me that Royal's career ended on a low note: 5-5-1 record in 1976 that started with a 1-point loss to a no-name Boston College team on the road in MA, followed by a 6-6 tie to hated rival Oklahoma in Dallas, then conference defeats to rival Texas A&M, Texas Tech, Baylor and Houston (30-0). It was a completely different SWC that year with Texas sort of taking a dive, and the league was never the same, with Houston, SMU, Arkansas and Baylor getting stronger and stronger.

But the following year 1977 new coach Fred Akers took Royal's ridiculously talented and veteran team all the way to No. 1 and 11-0 before getting destroyed by Notre Dame 10-38 in the Cotton Bowl.  

In 1977 the wishbone was already passe and on the way out, in favor of more balanced, West Coast passing offenses like the ones at BYU, Stanford, Washington State and Michigan State.



November 7th, 2012 at 3:34 PM ^

They were considered to be one of the hottest teams in the nation that fall, and featured a 270-lb battering-ram of a fullback named George Woodard in its wishbone attack.

There were a bunch of very vocal A&M fans at the game that day, and early in the game they kept yelling "We're #1!" The problem is that Michigan completely shut down Woodard and their option attack, and pounded the snot out of them 41-3.

That game is just one reason why I've always been convinced that if Bo's Michigan teams had the bowl tie-ins that the SWC or SEC had back then (the Cotton Bowl and the Sugar Bowl) instead of the Rose Bowl that he would have won at least one NC. Our offense and defense matched up far more favorably with the other option-running attacks prevalent in those conferences back then than we did with the pro-set-based passing attacks more common in the PAC-10.


November 7th, 2012 at 1:13 PM ^

The first thing you get when you Youtube "Darrell Royal" is:

Which I found ironic considering the current team's struggles with this exact art. From everything I've read about him, it seems like he was a man that preached toughness. A big loss to the Texas family, and I'm sure all of our thoughts are with them.


November 8th, 2012 at 1:09 AM ^

Thank you to you all who educated a young person on someone. I wish coaches like this one and others ie Pop Warner got more press for their contributions to the game.  


November 8th, 2012 at 2:09 PM ^

How relevant was footaball at UofT and in the state before this man? It seems like football wasn't nearly as popular in the state back then as it is today, but I am just getting the feeling from watching videos. Did he put the program on the map or restore it? Did the state care about nothing besides football or was baseball Texas's pastime?