Sports News Without Fear, Favor or Compromise
Sports News Without Fear, Favor or Compromise
Illustration for article titled Top Billin

Few people, if any, have written better stories—funny and smart—about college football than Dan Jenkins. Last fall, Michael MacCambridge was good enough to make Jenkins' 1963 Sports Illustrated piece, "The Disciples of St. Darrell on a Wild Weekend" part of his excellent Director's Cut series for Grantland:

Joe Coffman is a modern Texan. This means that Mary Sue is a pretty, loving and understanding wife, that his sons Bobby, 6, and Larry, 4, are healthy and happy, that his business is successful (four other branches in Austin, San Antonio, Lubbock and Amarillo), that his ranch-type home is comfortable, with all of the built-ins manufacturers sell these days, that he has a 1963 Oldsmobile Starfire and a 1962 Impala (both convertibles), that his close friends are mostly the ones he grew up with or knew in high school and college. Being a modern Texan also means that Joe Coffman might not recognize a cow pony if it were tied on a leash in his backyard, that he despises Stetson hats, that he likes cashmere sport coats, pin-collar shirts, Las Vegas, playing golf at Colonial Country Club, Barbra Streisand ("Think she can't sing?"), good food, good booze, Barry Goldwater and, more than anything else, the Texas Longhorns.6 And does he like those Longhorns!7

"They got too much character to lose that game," Joe said about Texas as he browsed through the mail on his desk at the office, drank some coffee and talked on the phone. Like any loyal Longhorn, his preoccupation with the OU game was all-consuming. The other games, they were good ones, Joe Coffman felt, but his good health, he said, his well-being and welfare would be riding with the Longhorns. It was not a very good day for work.

"I got to think a Bloody Mary's the answer," he said, heading out to Colonial Country Club. There would be friends there, talking football, "getting down" (making bets), and the time would pass more quickly through the endless football arguments that take place in Colonial's 19th hole the day before the games.

[Photo Credit: Darren Carroll]

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