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Conch Horn

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Everything posted by Conch Horn

  1. I'm on the sidelines near the team area for many Texas games and one of the most galling things is a glaring lack of fire and intensity from Swoopes, particularly following a turnover or non-productive offensive series. People have noted his body language as being that of a defeatist and I question whether or not he possesses the inner desire and leadership required of a winning quarterback. Nice young man, but leave "nice" in your locker. In discussing this subject with several other former players the other night, the consensus was that, basically, no one has ever seen him appear to be visibly pissed off at the appropriate times and he lacks any semblance of confidence, much less any level of cockiness. His postgame interview with The LHN after the last debacle was a prime example. When asked his thoughts on his performance, the response was simply, "I competed. That's all you can ask..." No. It's. Not. Give me a QB1 with the red ass about another loss that's not afraid to take hits...and dish 'em out.
  2. There is something very significant named for Freddie at Darrell K Royal-Texas Memorial Stadium...and an important part of Longhorn Football tradition. The base of the scoreboard at the south end tunnel where the players enter and leave the field is dedicated to the memory of Freddie Joe Steinmark. There are two pictures and a plaque on the concrete pillar that served as the support for the pre-Godzillatron scoreboard. When the players come down the ramp from the locker room, they touch his picture to honor his courage and heart. It was one of the greatest moments of my playing career to put the first 3 points on that scoreboard on the night it was dedicated to my good friend Freddie's memory.
  3. The FNL cast was a great family to work with. Kyle, Connie, Brad, Taylor, Aimee, Scott, Jesse, Matt, Liz, Tim, Aaron,...all of 'em, just great people on and off the set. Funny thing was, though, that the "McCoy" guys, "J.D." and "Joe" were the only ones that seemed to think they were better than anyone. Consequently, they didn't last long in the storyline. Many crew members were pretty happy when they moved on... There are several cast members that have maintained a presence in the area and it's always a great time when we have the chance to get together for a visit and some storytelling. Kyle Chandler bought a ranch in the Dripping Springs area and serves as a volunteer firefighter in northern Hays County when he's not working on a project. I was always honored when he would ask me what a "...real Texas high school coach" would say in certain situations when he didn't feel comfortable with the script outline in various scenes...and he'd actually use my suggested lines. Overall, it was one of the most fun things I've ever done and I was privileged to be able to work both on camera and behind the scenes in a truly great series. "Dillon, Texas" was a pretty cool place to spend a part of my life. Even though we wrapped the final scenes in the summer of '10, I still get a little choked up when I drive by the stadium and field house over by ABIA. Lots of late hours, but great memories there...
  4. Hey, Jim- Glad you're a fan of Friday Night Lights! I worked on the show and was cast as the Referee that threw Coach Taylor (Kyle Chandler) out of a playoff game in Season 3, Episode 10 ("The Giving Tree"). Great cast and crew to work with on that show; miss 'em every day...
  5. Try 100 mg of 5-HTP and 3 mg of Melatonin. Other than vivid, weird dreams, it works pretty well for this old night owl...
  6. Glad to find something to fill the "Breaking Bad" void. Hell of a great show...and the final 10 minutes of the last episode was absolutely genius direction and camera work.
  7. It'd be nice if folks would give Coach Bibb Falk his due when referring to the baseball stadium. I call it, "The Falk'n Disch"...
  8. ...we had Medina. Folks have been reporting that smoothie machines and flat screens have been replaced by puke buckets and pits. Reportedly, team members this off season will feel a level of pain and discomfort like no other athletes have ever endured. No doubt that in recent years, things have gotten a bit less demanding than what we would like to believe, but as some old-timers around here can attest, we had our version of a "reign of terror" from the toughest little man I've ever known. Frank Medina measured in at under five feet tall, but he might as well have been twice that height, based on the level of fear and respect we had for him. He could be either your worst enemy...or your best friend...and I chose the latter. If you busted your butt in his infamous "Medina Sessions" and he recognized your effort, the respect was mutual and he showed actual admiration for those players that weren't totally blessed with natural athletic ability. We had what would be the equivalent of 4 and 5 star talent come through the 40 Acres over the years ("Blue Chips" was the accepted term then) that had all the press clippings, but didn't have the heart for what Frank doled out during the off season. Before schools like Nebraska built massive weight facilities that became their version of the Taj Mahal, most athletic trainers from Frank's era shied away from the heavy lifting and prescribed a regimen that was geared toward lean and quick players. We were warned by Frank at the start of each off season (which began the day we got back from the Christmas break) that we would "..run, run, RUN, and then RUN some more!" On days that we didn't only run, we worked out in the locker rooms, where Frank had turned the heat up to something resembling the Planet Mercury. With the benches pushed up against the lockers, we'd be split into groups. One group donned 40 pound weight vests and sparring gloves and beat on these giant heavy bags suspended from the concrete beams under the stadium...for 3 minutes. While that was going on, another group did situps...with the weight vests...and holding a 25 pound weight plate behind your head. There was a jump roping group that had to stay in continuous motion for those 3 minutes, lest Frank catch someone "pacing themselves" and he'd have everyone start over. Another group carried 25 pound dumbbells in each hand and jogged briskly around the inside perimeter of the locker room, pumping the weights up and down as they ran. When Frank would blow the whistle to start, he would then walk around yelling, "Show me something, men!" and occasionally punch an unsuspecting player in the gut as they slugged away at the heavy bag or jumped rope. The only group that got to rest during this explosion of energy was the group holding the feet of the guys doing sit-ups...and they'd be sweating all over your legs... Three minutes seemed an eternity, and when Frank blew the whistle, we had but a few seconds to get out of the weight vest, hand it to our partner, and move to the next station before he blew the command to begin again. Student trainers were screaming at guys, imitating Frank's exhortations, and partners were yelling encouragement to their buddies...if they could draw a breath in that hellhole. Whistle. Rinse. Repeat. No water break until everyone had done the exercises for one full circuit to Frank's satisfaction. When those sessions were over, we'd go outside onto the track and "cool down" with some sprints and a few conditioning laps. If the weather was inclement, we had ramps to run under the West side stands while wearing the weight vests and sometimes carrying a teammate piggy-back in relay races up the ramps. Frank was like a little tyrant strutting around in his starched white trainer's pants and shirt, always with a navy blue or olive green "sweat jacket" and a white bucket hat with a burnt orange chenille "T" emblazoned on it. We'd do our workouts with one eye on what we were doing...and the other eye on Frank. Sometimes, he'd focus on what you were doing and you'd pray you were doing it right...and if you were, you might get a little wink from Frank...and it made everything seem worthwhile. And...we had puke buckets...if you could make it that far. [ATTACH]720[/ATTACH]
  9. Do you foresee any movement of players from one side of the ball to the other during spring drills? I know there are folks wishing for Mykkele Thompson to get a look on O, but have you smelled or seen any smoke regarding Mykkele or others?
  10. They were, in fact, low cut Chuck Taylor All-Stars. Roosevelt had sustained a serious knee injury and the training staff recommended a flat-sole basketball shoe for him on that old Astroturf playing surface to minimize traction if he had his foot planted and took an awkward hit. Many of our offensive linemen wore similar shoes with a basketball sole on that surface to hopefully avoid severe knee injuries.
  11. Here's how one local Austin establishment handled a situation a few years ago... My wife, daughter, and I were at Uncle Billy's Brew & Que on Barton Springs Road one afternoon and my wife began exhibiting symptoms of a stroke while we were seated at a table. She slid onto the floor with no muscle function on her left side and I had my daughter immediately find the manager while I called 911. The manager calmly cleared the room where we were while waiting for the ambulance. Luckily, not too many folks there, save one smartass college-aged group that was laughing at my wife and calling her a "drunk bitch" and such. The manager snapped at them to shut up and leave the area. We had only ordered a couple of drinks and were getting ready to order food when the stroke hit, so I gave the manager my credit card to take care of any charges we had incurred. He handed it right back and said, "No, sir. It's taken care of." The EMS folks arrived, got my wife stabilized, and we followed the ambulance to Brackenridge Hospital. While I was in my wife's ER area, I was paged by a woman at the ER waiting room desk and was informed that someone was there that wanted to talk to me. She pointed to a young lady that I recognized from Uncle Billy's, wearing one of their company shirts. She had 4 large paper bags full of barbecue from Uncle Billy's, ribs, brisket, sausage, you name it, and a bunch of side dishes. She handed them to me, asked how my wife was doing, (fortunately, the EMTs and doctors got her on an anti-stroke med immediately and she was doing well) and then told me that I had beers waiting whenever I had the chance to return. I'll never forget that act of kindness by those folks at Uncle Billy's and have tried to repay them as often as possible with many return visits. That's the way to handle a crisis involving a customer... I live just around the corner from Red's and now I have even less of a reason to give them a try.
  12. Why should he? The game was last Saturday...
  13. Who do you see taking over for Anthony Fera at P/PK? It appears that Nick Jordan redshirted this season, Nick Rose will be a Junior, and Will Russ is still around. Any news on walk-ons or transfers in that area?
  14. Former teacher, coach, and football official now working for a drug testing company (no, I don't test the drugs myself...) setting up and servicing testing programs for school districts and businesses throughout the state. Yes, I'm a traveling, card-carrying, certified pee collector... Also worked on the TV series, "Friday Night Lights" in the football equipment department and had a couple of speaking roles in the show. Worked on the series, "Necessary Roughness" in a similar capacity a couple of summers ago. During the football season, I'm a Television Timeout Coordinator, or "Red Hat" for the Big 12. In other words, I'm the guy in the red hat, red shirt, headset to the network production truck, and fluorescent orange gloves (they're not "oven mitts") you probably scream at to get off the field during commercial breaks at the UT games and other conference venues, as well as the Alamo Bowl, Texas Bowl, and the US Army All-American Bowl. I'm actually providing the fans in attendance at least three opportunities per quarter to relieve your bladders from the pregame tailgate ingestion of refreshments that I cannot partake in until after the game. I'm wishing I could return to the area of team/sporting goods sales, but those gigs are getting harder to find...
  15. The picture was actually from the 1973 Cotton Bowl game when we came back to beat Alabama, 17-13.
  16. Absolutely. Glad someone else is a fan of the Tampico Stogies!
  17. You're right. I was saying that I didn't question their heart and effort, etc. It's been a long time since I played and my helmet may have come off a time or two during tackling drills, hence the poor composition. When I was in the program, we were extremely grateful for anyone who had the desire to try to help out as a walk-on...and the line to sign up wasn't very long. It would be sweet if there were several 6'3"+, 275ish lb. guys with great footwork and blocking skills to give Caleb Bluiett a great battle every day in practice...but they would probably be on scholarship here or somewhere else. I'm sincerely not questioning your assessment of the walk-on situation at Texas as you are obviously way more connected than I. I did consult a young friend of mine that was a walk-on here from '03 to '06 and he said that it was tough to find many guys nearing the same size, speed, and skill set that the scholarship players possessed that wanted to pursue a dream and try out. He did tell me that he and several of his fellow walk-ons that did stick around for the 2 trips to Pasadena were pulling some scholarship-caliber honeys, so it was worth the effort... I'll tread lightly from here on out...
  18. Bennie hasn't been allowed to do his job the way he wanted to the last few years...
  19. I'm not sure whose "..time and space.." is being taken up by these kids that want to be a part of the Texas Football program. No one is forcing these guys to walk on and if they can't contribute on the scout teams, special teams, or possibly earn a spot on the depth chart, they're not invited to stick around. They bust their asses in the weight room and practice sessions just like the scholarship players...and the biggest reward for most of them will be wearing a Longhorn jersey on the sidelines at a home game and possibly getting to hear their name announced on Senior Day. Some, like Michael Ungar, are able to carve out a spot on the roster and excel to nearly "folk hero" status. In every football program, there have been countless, nameless walk-on players that have put forth more effort and sacrificed more sweat and time than the vast numbers of highly-touted scholarship athletes that never contributed a positive snap...but they simply weren't talented enough to merit playing time in games. Rather than question the heart and effort of these non-scholarship players, I prefer to thank them profusely for the contributions they make to the program. They have my utmost admiration and respect.
  20. Last year, the general tone was eerily similar heading into the Alamo Bowl. Coming off of another poor performance at season's end combined with the Mack drama, many folks feel they're making a statement by not attending/not supporting the team in this game..."and that's fair." However, UT has a fairly rabid following in South Texas that did show up last year and had a great time, particularly in the 4th quarter. I work on the sideline for the Alamo Bowl every year and I can honestly say that the Texas crowd was as loud and raucous as any bunch of fans I've observed over the past 20 years...and I think it'll be similar to that as long as we can keep it from getting out of hand early. Don't underestimate the San Antonio/South Texas Longhorn fans. They love a reason to party and this is an event for which they'll be prepared. As it has always been for my 6+ decades on Planet Bevo, I'm glad to see another kickoff. My gameday job doesn't allow me to cheer, show emotion, etc., but believe me, I still get teary during "The Eyes" before the game, feel the butterflies in my gut, and have to suppress the urge to jump out of the building when we score or hit a big play....just like in my playing days many years ago. I guess I'll always look at things through a player's eyes and be grateful for those that cheer, encourage, and unconditionally support the efforts of the guys on the field...and play my ass off despite the folks that turn their back on you when times are tough. Like politics, I have friends on both sides of that aisle...and no matter who's coaching...or taking snaps...or leading stretching exercises, there will be a faction that'll hate 'em. I've been around long enough to know that some folks are only happy when they're miserable...but life's too short for me to feel that way. Come to think of it, I'd be pretty sad if I found out that I'd seen my last Longhorn game...so I'll look forward to the next one. Hook 'Em.
  21. Tip o' the hat to the late, great, Mr. Lewis Grizzard...
  22. Very interesting that Briles would even meet with Mack given the amount of distrust and vitriol between the two...
  23. Being such a highly-regarded philanthropist, Pawwwwllllll probably gave his invitation to Tammy or Harvey Lee Updyke...
  24. Coaches, Sports Information Directors, Athletic Directors, etc. are in New York City for the National Football Foundation's Annual Awards Dinner: National Football Foundation > Home

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