Game On

I’m pretty disappointed that you overlooked Texas State University in your “20 Reasons to Love College Football” [September 2011]. It’s a huge school, with nearly 35,000 students. It is moving up to the WAC in 2012, upgrading stadium seats to 30,000, and has snatched up former TCU, Alabama, and Texas A&M coach Dennis Franchione. There is a lot of excitement in San Marcos and across the state about the big move in the program, with donors shelling out money and box seats selling out. And yet you hardly mentioned it in your college football edition.
Marc Speir
, Austin

I guess you were scared to include the Sul Ross State University Lobos in your football story, eh? How embarrassing to the other Texas mascots that our Lobos would have made barbecue out of all of them, even the precious pony [Reason Number 5, “Because Our Mascots Kill”]. An Aggie with a drawn saber might have a slight chance of winning, or maybe a miner with a pick, but I’d still bet on the Lobos!
Rabid Lobos Fan, Alpine

How could Reason Number 6—“Damn Good Coaches”—not include a mention of Gil Steinke or Jim Wacker? And shouldn’t Reason Number 20 have been “Because Kingsville and San Marcos were real football towns before UT–San Antonio ever existed”? Who researches these stories, anyway? Not alums from Kingsville or San Marcos, I would imagine, or true in-state football players and fans.

How could y’all overlook the Texas A&M University–Kingsville Javelinas’ legacy, Lone Star Conference/NAIA champs who produced so many NFL stars over many decades? What about their rivals from San Marcos, the Texas State Bobcats, national champions as well?

I could go on about all “the fans”—all Texans and all potential readers—you forgot in Reason Number 1: the Stephen F. Austin Lumberjacks, the Sam Houston State Bearkats, the Sul Ross State Lobos, the Angelo State Rams. Those schools and more have long had great college football programs and have great Texas stories.

If you are going to choose such broad topics then I suggest you do the work and remember how big Texas is and how many people are involved. Many universities have produced outstanding football programs not mentioned, long before this season.
Bud Garcia, Austin

It’s one thing to miss facts when writing about politics, education, or religion. These can be forgiven. But how can the Lone Star State’s namesake magazine make such a grievous error when cataloging the biggest football rivalry in the state?! While enterprising young Aggies did manage to brand the new mascot with “13–0,” the brand was not changed to read “BEVO” [Reason Number 17, “Because A&M and UT Hate Each Other”]. When, as you mentioned, Bevo was barbecued, the Aggie pranksters were invited, served from the side they branded, and presented with the hide still reading “13–0.” Lost now to the campus in College Station, it for years hung in the sacred Memorial Student Center.
Brandon LeBlanc, 
Cedar Park

Editors’ Note: We appreciate Mr. LeBlanc’s clarification. Numerous versions of this story exist, some of them doubtlessly pure legend. There are no doubts, however, concerning the importance of this rivalry. See Farmers Flight!

Honor Role

Nice article about Karen Wagner [“Karen Wagner’s Life,” September 2011]. I attended the Command and General Staff Officer Course with her at Fort Sam Houston. I was a major in the Reserves at the time. She was a major as well. I knew her to be a wonderful officer and person. She was a real credit to the U.S. Army.

I remember her best for her introduction to our class. There were about thirty of us. Late in the evening, around eight p.m., we all took our turn saying a bit about ourselves, our spouses, children, pets, and for reservists, our civilian jobs. Some gave speeches, some said very little. Karen came near the end. She stood up. It was very simple, with no hesitation: “No kids, no pets, no problems.” We all busted out laughing. We need more like her in the Army. She was a true leader.
Thomas J. Crane, San Antonio

Ground Rules

A “patch”? The Texanist, while the acknowledged authority on all things Texan, may have missed the subtlety involved in deciding what to call a property of diminutive proportion [September 2011]. The term “patch” is something your ma does to your blue jeans or what a fence requires when one of your cows begins to fancy herself an escape artist. You could have a pea patch or a watermelon patch, in which case “patch” refers to the crop. In Texas, it’s the land itself that is the focus of our affection. Bottom line, if land is used to grow something, it’s called a farm, and if it is used to raise horses or cattle, it is a ranch. If it is used to raise hogs, it is called Arkansas. But calling any of our beloved Texas land a “patch” seems a little oxymoronic.
Ray Henley, Fort Worth

Editors’ Note: Our September 2011 issue contained several errors of fact. The article about Rick Perry’s political career [“The Great Campaigner”] stated that Perry has won ten contested elections. The correct number is eleven. (The 1990 Republican primary for agriculture commissioner was inadvertently omitted from our list.) Kenneth Neighbours, Perry’s opponent in the 1984 Democratic primary for state representative, won 22 percent of the vote, not 10 percent. W. R. “Bob” Hailey, his opponent in the 1986 Democratic primary for state representative, won 24 percent of the vote, not 15 percent. And, contrary to what we wrote, Ann Richards was not the last Democrat to win a statewide election. Dan Morales, Bob Bullock, and John Sharp, among a handful of others, have won elections in the years since. Our college football package also contained a mistake. The item regarding throwback jerseys erroneously stated that Baylor University linebacker Mike Singletary once made 79 tackles in a single game. That is pretty much impossible—even for Mike Singletary. In fact, the most tackles the two-time All-American ever had in a game at Baylor was 33. We regret these errors.