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MUST READ . . . .Frank Denius story

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Frank Denius was not yet twenty-one when he fought his way across Europe and was awarded four Silver Stars, a Presidential Unit Citation, and two Purple Hearts. On the Way describes Denius's formative experiences during World War II in gripping detail and will cause any reader to wonder how he or she might have held up under similar pressure. The powerful opening chapters are followed by a detailed account of Denius's life and career after the war, assembled into a first-person memoir from conversations between Denius and Thomas Hatfield, and published by the Briscoe Center for American History at the University of Texas at Austin.

Discharged from the army in October 1945, Denius enrolled at the University of Texas within a week. He is a lifelong supporter of the university: as part of the Texas Exes, as a donor to numerous academic programs, and as a fan of Longhorn football. Former UT football coach Mack Brown liked to say, "Frank has been to more practices than I have."

Denius graduated from the University of Texas School of Law and joined one of Austin's leading law firms in the late 1940s. Denius recounts how Texas operated in Lyndon Johnson's prime, observes power plays in the Texas energy industry, and describes his role in building a regional university into a global leader.

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I was lucky enough to spend more than an hour on the phone yesterday with Frank Denius. The UT press recently published Denius' autobiography titled "On The Way".
For those unaware, Denius is one of the most die-hard Longhorns fans you'd ever want to know. His blood truly runs burnt orange.
But just how "burnt orange" is he?
"This October will be my 71st straight Texas-OU game," Denius told me.
When I asked Denius about his favorite OU game, if there was ever one that was the most memorable, his response made me chuckle because only he has seen enough of the games to consider it in such a way.
"Hmmm, there are so many," he said. "I guess I kind of would have to think back and look at it decade by decade."
Denius then immediately started talking about the '46 game, then the '51 contest, then the '58-, '69-, '77-games, the Peter Gardere years, and on and on.
And he wasn't just describing the fact that Texas won those games, but rather how they won, who the players were, and he even talked about the other games in that season to give more color on why that OU game was so significant in his opinion. It was like he was there, seeing them all in his memory and vividly recounting them to me detail by detail.
As I listened, I realized what I was really hearing was a kid's love, his pure love for the game and for the Longhorns, pouring out of a 91-year old man who had landed on Omaha Beach in World War II, who became a confidant of LBJ and Darrell Royal, who was chairman of Southern Union Co. and who helped civic leaders guide Austin into the great city it has become. Heck, he even has a story about how Town Lake came to be.
He's been to state dinners at the White House, he's won the Congressional Medal of Honor, been wounded in war twice and he was awarded the Legion of Honor from France.
I'd say that's a full life.
Denius' love affair with the Longhorns is far from football only. He is one of the universities greatest benefactors, supporting multiple initiatives financially over the years, including most recently the Dell Medical School. Of course, the football team's practice fields are also named in his honor.
There's so much more to Denius' story and I'll publish that article at a later date.
But in the interim, suffice to say that I feel Frank Denius is a great man, a great Longhorn and a national treasure.
You can order his book through UT Press at the link below.
P.S. If you're somehow unconvinced that he's a true fan, just ask him about football officials. He'll tell you there was this Rice game back in the 50s where... you get the picture.
Denius met Tom Herman and other Texas football coaches at a donor meet-and-greet on Monday night.
Denius said he came away impressed and feels confident that Herman is the right hire.
"I think the stars are aligning just right," Denius said. "This is happening at the right time in his life and at this specific time in the university. I'm very excited."
Spring Westfield running back Daniel Young de-committed from Houston last night.
Texas offered Young a scholarship earlier this month. Young is expected to visit Texas in January.
Remember, Texas assistant Corby Meekins is the former head coach at Westfield. Meekins is very familiar with Young and his family. What's more, Corby's brother, Matt, replaced him as head coach at Westfield.
With the recent commitment to Texas of fellow running back Toneil Carter, it brings about a question.
How many RBs is Texas willing to take in this recruiting class?
Outside of Young, Wylie East RB Eno Benjamin also has an offer from Texas. Benjamin is expected to announce his decision on Jan. 7.
Here's a name for recruiting to file away for the month of January.
Troy James.
James is from Baton Rouge (La.) Madison Prep. It's where Malcolm Roach played his high school ball and where Roach's father still coaches.
While much has been made about Texas recruiting defensive lineman Bryan Jones, James could be a diamond in the rough.
James is a 6-3, 275-pound defensive lineman who plays through contact and with a high motor. He seems to be a perfect fit at a 5-technique in a 3-4 scheme.
James is currently committed to Arkansas but he told EJ last night that he is very interested in the Horns, too.
James may be a late qualifier which could be some cause for concern from various programs. But as a player, he's terrif
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