Review: “Book masterfully lays out The Big Shootout”

He interviewed vast numbers of players from both teams, as well as fans. He researched the social and political attitudes of the times. McDonald doesn’t short-change the era when it comes to race and American culture. What McDonald ended up with was the ultimate book on a football game that changed lives.

Hogs & Steers — All Business, All the Time

By Mark S. McDonald, author When Texas played Arkansas in The Big Shootout for the 1969 national championship, America was in chaos … our young men coming back from Vietnam in body bags, race riots over integration, peace rallies, assassinations, The Pill, street drugs … In this cauldron of stress, how did players and coaches […]

Gasp! – Coach Declares His Faith, Before All

dabo swinney clemson football

Oh, dear, what now? Moments after his Clemson Tigers won the college football national championship Monday night, Coach Dabo Swinney stood on his hind legs and proclaimed “all the glory goes to the good Lord.” Not to some bull-necked linebacker or a pass receiver who seems to carry his own mini-trampoline. With once-invincible Alabama leaving […]

Bama vs. Clemson: Not First of a Kind

ABC Sports college football

In their hustle to fill air time, radio and TV pundits have covered every possible angle in the run-up to the Clemson-Alabama game for the NCAA football championship.  Is America suffering from Tiger-Tide fatigue? Which team will blink? Will Nick Saban actually smile? This much we know: Santa Clara, Calif. is not exactly the crossroads […]

Army-Navy Game: Cleansing the Palate

If the Army-Navy game is one of your favorites each year, sign here. For color, pageantry, hard-won respect and zero B.S., I’m pleased this game gets center stage each year. Compare this contest with the pro wrestling we too often see disguised as football. Army-Navy is like brushing your teeth after a camping trip – […]

Classy Coaches: When Less Was More

college coach nuts on sideline

You saw it. I saw it. We all did. Utah’s imposing head football coach Kyle Winingham dogged officials as he left the field after during his team’s 10-3 loss against Washington in the Pac-12 Championship Game on Friday.  “What!” Winingham demanded, his arms spread wide. “How could you miss that!” It was not a question. Shouted […]

Strong Men, Backed by Strong Women

Mack Brown former Texas Coach now at North Carolina

Mack Brown accepted the North Carolina head football job earlier this week, only after consulting his wife, Sally. “She agreed to go with me to coach at three places — Hawaii, the Bahamas or Chapel Hill.”  Having seen Mack on Nov. 12 at the Little Rock (Ark.) Touchdown Club luncheon to honor local high school […]