Big 12: Frank Broyles

Aggies planning tribute for former coach

November, 12, 2010
Former Texas A&M coach Emory Bellard was recently diagnosed with ALS, or Lou Gehrig's disease, but the school is putting together an honorary dinner for the coach.

Former Texas A&M coaches Jackie Sherrill and R.C. Slocum plan to be in attendance at the Nov. 19 dinner, as well as Frank Broyles, Spike Dykes, Grant Teaff, Bill Yeoman and Bum Phillips.

Bellard coached Texas A&M to a 48-27 record in a little more than six seasons at Texas A&M in the 1970s, twice going 10-2.

For more information on how to attend, go to

Lunch links: Ride it out, Forlorn Five

June, 11, 2010
Lots of happenings means lots of links.

Arkansas-A&M rivalry a nod to the old SWC

October, 3, 2009

Posted by's Tim Griffin

ARLINGTON, Texas -- I think I've wandered into some kind of football time warp.

Sure, the Texas A&M-Arkansas game will be played in the modernistic Cowboys Stadium. Every known spectator amenity known to mankind -- especially that massive high-def television screen that is as stunning as I was told -- is present.

But this game assuredly is a nod to the storied rivalry that the Aggies and Razorbacks once enjoyed in the Southwest Conference.

It's been a treat for fans old and new to cheer the highlights of players like Bill Montgomery, Jack Pardee and John David Crow that have been showed before the game. We even had a couple of glimpses of Frank Broyles and Bear Bryant in some highlights, narrated by the venerable Kern Tipps.

This will be a fun series over the next 10 years. It will give both schools a chance to celebrate their storied football legacies.

And maybe even make a few more memories of their own.

Stoops-Brown rivalry one for the ages

October, 10, 2008

Posted by's Tim Griffin

DALLAS -- Tomorrow amongst the ferris wheels and corn dogs, we'll celebrate the kind of coaching rivalry that used to mark college football.

In the Big Ten, the legendary "Ten-Year War" involved Woody Hayes vs. Bo Schembechler. Barry Switzer vs. Tom Osborne was almost as big as the Big Eight Conference itself. The SEC had Bear Bryant against Shug Jordan. And the Southwest Conference celebrated the annual grudge game between good friends Darrell Royal and Frank Broyles.

But after surveying the landscape of college football today, those matchups look about as quaint as dollar-a-gallon gasoline. We likely won't see many like those again.

That's what makes tomorrow's game at the Cotton Bowl so special and intriguing.

Mack Brown and Bob Stoops are that rare breed today of rock stars with coaching whistles, arguably bigger than their respective programs. Both have won national championships and are headed towards induction one day in the College Football Hall of Fame.

And their yearly battles in the Red River Rivalry will one day be remembered as one of the greatest coaching rivalries in college football history.

Saturday's game will be the 10th time that Stoops and Brown have hooked up. Stoops holds a 6-3 edge, including a five-game winning streak from 2000-04. But Brown has claimed two of the last three games between the two South Division rivals.

When each arrived at their respective schools, both programs were perceived to be downtrodden dinosaurs that had seen better days. Just look back to the coaching tenures of John Blake and John Mackovic and remember how far both schools have risen since their swoons a decade ago.

After their arrivals, Brown and Stoops elevated the stature of both programs, turning them into two of a handful of national powers who are national championship threats almost every season in the new millennium.

Since Stoops arrived in 1999, either Oklahoma or Texas has won the Big 12 South Division championship every year. The Sooners have accounted for five Big 12 titles and the Longhorns one during the nine-year period. During that same period, every Big 12 North team has claimed at least a share of the title.

Brown realizes how the Big 12 has changed the dynamics of their rivalry.

"I remember when we got here, everybody said the luster was gone," Brown said. "This game wasn't important anymore and nobody really cared about it and it wasn't even a national TV game and it was so sad that the Texas-OU game was unimportant.

"It was important to the players, it was important to the coaches, but it's back now to where it has national implications, and that's been fun."

The Stoops-Brown rivalry might not be as bitter as some of those other coaching matchups. But that doesn't mean that either coach doesn't want to beat the pants off his coaching rival tomorrow afternoon.

Stoops said he might run into Brown three or four times a year -- including their 3 -hour yearly shindig at the Cotton Bowl.

Brown has always spoken reverently about his respect for Stoops.

"What I've gotten is a great respect for Bob and what he's done over the last 10 years," he said. "He'll be remembered like Barry Switzer and (former Oklahoma coach Bud) Wilkinson. He's done exactly for them what they've asked him to do.

(Read full post)

Longhorns ready for visit from old rivals

September, 9, 2008

Posted by's Tim Griffin

Most of the Texas players have little inkling about how big the Longhorns' rivalry with Arkansas used to be.

One of the flagship battles of the old Southwest Conference will be restaged Saturday in Austin when the Razorbacks visit.

For the old-timers, the rivalry brings back memories of Darrell Royal and Frank Broyles, "The Big Shootout," Ken Hatfield's punt return, Tony Jones' catch and others during the 75-game series history.

But for younger fans whose football memories are shaped with Texas in the Big 12 and Arkansas in the Southeastern Conference, it's more of a relic to the past than one grounded in the present.

"I think that Texas feels like (it has) a lot of rivals. Our fans usually talk about the game of the week," Texas coach Mack Brown said. "So many of the kids now at Arkansas and Texas were not alive when some of those games were really important (between the two schools)."

Brown got a little bit of an idea earlier in his career at Texas when he posted a 1-2 record against Houston Nutt-led teams. Arkansas rang in the new millennium with a 27-6 victory in the Cotton Bowl punctuated when Nutt taunted Texas fans by flashing an upside-down hook'em sign to celebrate his victory.

Nutt's team was even more impressive in 2003 when they hammered the Longhorns in a 38-28 victory in Austin that snapped a 20-game home winning streak.

Texas earned a matter of revenge the following season in Fayetteville, Ark., with a tight 22-20 comeback victory in Fayetteville that helped steel the Vince Young-led team for back to back BCS bowl comebacks in the next two seasons.

Nutt is gone and offensive wizard Bobby Petrino has replaced him as Arkansas' coach. The Longhorns know they will still be in a battle.

"Arkansas is in the SEC and they do have great players on their team," Texas senior defensive end Brian Orakpo said. "So we can't afford to take them lightly."

The Longhorns are hoping that the Arkansas will provide them with a strong test heading into a punishing Big 12 start that includes games at Colorado, Oklahoma (in Dallas) and Missouri in the first three weeks.

And the Longhorns say they aren't overlooking the Razorbacks, despite Arkansas' early struggles in narrow victories over Western Illinois and Louisiana-Monroe. Arkansas was down 13 points in the fourth quarter against Louisiana-Monroe before rallying for a 28-27 victory.

"I think these guys are young and talented," Texas senior defensive tackle Roy Miller said. "It's a huge game and a big rivalry. Nobody is taking them lightly. We expect them to give us their best game."

Rare four-star, nonconference tilt tops Big 12 viewers' guide

September, 8, 2008

Posted by ESPN's Tim Griffin

Here's the latest four-star viewer's guide for the games of the weekend. Plan your honey-dos and set your tape recorders accordingly.

A ranking of four stars indicates must-see television, and maybe even a game tape to be savored by more devoted viewers. Three-star games are worth the investment in time. Two-star games bear a quick glimpse or two for occasional score updates. And one-star games are indications that your time might be better spent at the grocery store or playing with the kids. All games will be played on Saturday unless otherwise noted.

Four-star game

Kansas at South Florida (ESPN/8 p.m. ET, Friday) -- Both teams will be trying to prove their national legitimacy in a battle between old Bill Snyder disciples Mark Mangino and Jim Leavitt.

Three-star games

Iowa State at Iowa (Big Ten Network, noon) -- Hard to believe that the game for the Cy-Hawk Trophy is one of only four this week matching 2-0 teams.

Arkansas at Texas (ABC, 3:30 p.m.) -- Darrell Royal and Frank Broyles aren't roaming the sidelines like the good ol' days, but Mack Brown hasn't forgotten the thumping that the Razorbacks gave his team in Austin in 2003 in their last trip.

Oklahoma at Washington, (ESPN, 7:45 p.m.) -- Bob Stoops didn't like his last trip to the northwest when he was jobbed by a Pac-10 officiating crew in Oregon. This game should be easier, particularly with Ty Willingham's job status being an open question in Seattle these days.

Two-star games

Washington State at Baylor (FSN, 12:30 p.m.) -- This matchup is intriguing only because a judgment can be made about the relative strengths of the Big 12 and Pac-10 conferences when its worst teams meet.

Nevada at Missouri (PPV, 12:30 p.m.) -- Rangy Nevada QB Colin Kaepernick gave Texas Tech fits last week. It won't be quite as easy in Columbia, particularly with top Nevada running threat Luke Lippincott out for the season with a knee injury.

New Mexico State at Nebraska (PPV, 7 p.m.) -- This has some entertainment value as New Mexico State mad scientist Hal Mumme and talented QB Chase Holbrook faces the Nebraska secondary. How much will the Cornhuskers miss Barry Turner? And how much will the Aggies be a mystery in their first game of the season?

SMU at Texas Tech (FSN, 7 p.m.) -- Wonder if there might be a few passes at Jones SBC Stadium in this one? Tech has dominated the series, winning the last 12 games since SMU's six-game streak from 1981-86.

One-star game

Missouri State at Oklahoma State (FCS, 7 p.m.) -- Don't expect the Cowboys' talented offense to show much mercy against Terry Allen's Missouri State team. The Bears have never beaten a Big 12 team in nine previous games.

Big 12 morning links: Brown vs. Stoops -- one for the ages

July, 25, 2008

Posted by's Tim Griffin

College football history is marked by historic coaching battles, some that have been a big part in the history of Big 12 schools.

No rivalry was as intense, or as nationally regarded, as those in the 1970s and 80s between Nebraska and Oklahoma when Tom Osborne and Barry Switzer were prowling the sidelines. Their relationship always was cordial but has deepened after both men left coaching. Switzer campaigned when Osborne was running for governor in Nebraska a few years ago. They've even made television commercials together.

Texas coach Darrell Royal had his own legendary battle with Arkansas' Frank Broyles over the years. The two coaches always were close friends. It was somehow fitting that both left the coaching profession together, facing off in their final games in the 1976 season finale.

The Big 12 now has a similar rivalry that likely will be as fondly remembered in the future. Berry Tramel of the Daily Oklahoman correctly is putting the recent battles between Oklahoma's Bob Stoops and Texas' Mack Brown in the same historic category.

The Stoops-Brown matchup is as good as it gets in college football these days. They will meet for the 10th time this season at the Cotton Bowl, with Stoops holding a 6-3 edge.

It's been interesting to watch both coaches have such completely different styles but be able to have sustained success. Both have won national championships. Both have pushed their respective programs among the handful of the most dominant in the country, restoring the order at two of the nation's traditional power schools.

It's rare that two division rivals like Texas and Oklahoma can be so good at the same time for so long. And the way college coaches bounce around to better jobs makes such a sustained rivalry as Stoops-Brown hard to find.

Here are a few other Big 12 links worth checking out this morning.

My take: Such are the expectations that come with success. Missouri coach Gary Pinkel always wanted his program judged like that -- and he's about to get it this year.

My take: Robinson might be among the most indispensable players in the conference. The Cowboys would crater without him.

My take: The competition between Austen Arnaud and Phillip Bates for the starting job appears close heading into camp after talking with Chizik this week.

My take: Which is a pretty good indication of the lack of recent lack of national title success in the conference, except for the Jayhawks, isn't it?

My take: The margin of error could be even closer this season. I'm betting the Big 12 will be more competitive from top to bottom than any season in recent memory.

My take: Sherman is facing a tough rebuilding job, but it's not that tough. What about Greg McMackin, who has to follow June Jones at Hawaii?

My take: Most people thought Mark Mangino's job at Kansas once was impossible, too.

My take: The comparison is a little bit dicey. Both Stoops and Brown have national championships and their programs are awash with money. Rutgers isn't close.

My take: And also could make Will Muschamp's chances for a head coaching job come that much sooner.

My take: Freeman's career totals (24 touchdowns, 26 interceptions) make his claims a little suspicious.

My take: Some unexpected football success might be the best thing to settle everybody down in Waco. Or the creation of a high-sugar, high-caffeine version of Dr Pepper.

My take: But if the Wildcats make a bowl game, all of those bitter thoughts will be forgotten -- at least at the Prince household.

My take: Who needs those preseason football magazines with a resource like this?

My take: It's tougher to look good the second time around in the Red River Rivalry. Just ask Colt McCoy.