Thursday, November 28, 2013

Vol. 3 No. 76 More Quotes from Abe Lemons

I have to add these quotes by Abe Lemons about a former track athlete,  and Athletic Director at University of Texas, DeLoss Dodds.   Dodds was a very good quarter miler in the late 50's early 60's at Kansas State.  He has been the AD at U. of Texas for the past 32 years.  Many UT fans are calling for Dodds' head these days as athletic performances are waning and the university finds itself in a weakened  conference.  Years ago, Dodds fired Abe Lemons which provided some interesting quotes from Abe.    These quotes come from the Baylor University Fan website.

 . . . . . When DeLoss Dodd's fired Abe at Texas it hurt him very much and he took it very personally. Texas had given him a pickup to drive. He drove it home and parked it in the drive-way. The athletic dept. called him for about a month to return it, but he never answered their calls. Finally, they sent some flunkie out to Abe's house to get it. Abe said something like "sure, it's out in the driveway, take it" The guy then asked Abe for the keys and he responded that he had the truck but he didn't have any keys. The guy had to call a wrecker to come get it.

. . . . .He told some of us that he was going to buy a glass-bottom car so he could run over DeLoss Dodds and look at his face while he ran over him.

 may have to fill in a little background for you to fully understand the glass-bottomed car part.  Down I-35 south of Austin about 30 miles is San Marcos.  There's a tourist attraction there called Aquarena Springs. It's a clearwater park created by some natural springs.  One  of its features is a glass-bottomed boat, to view the underwater fish and turtles and things.  Lemons stole the concept of a glass bottom from that.  Anyone in the Austin area would make the connection and know where Lemons got the concept, but unless you were from around here the idea of a glass-bottomed car would sound pretty inventive. from an anonymous reader.

It's still a good quote and Lemons made no secret of how little he thought of Dodds.  Dodds reciprocated, of course.  He thought Lemons was way too unrefined to represent the University of Texas and eventually ran him off.  Good theatre in all respects. 

. . . . . he commented that he felt no shame for being fired as coach, but he was humiliated that he was fired by a track coach. (Dodds had been a track coach at Kansas State).. . . .

"George, great stuff about Abe Lemons and Deloss Dodds.  I have always thought very highly of Deloss Dodds, because he took the time to speak to me and offer a compliment a couple of times when we ran against K-State.  That meant a lot to me, a young runner awed and intimidated by the outstanding K-State runners."  Bill Blewett

 . . . . the quote about having one more rebound than a dead man was spoken about John (6'9") on the occasion of the team's rather poor performance during the first half of a game in Madison Square Garden at the NIT. Abe was so pissed off that he made the team strip off "shirts and skins" and scrimmage at half-time instead of go to the locker room. The Garden crowd loved it.

. . . . Abe recruited  by saying "tell me where you want to go. If they have a team, I'll schedule them". As a result, they played Hawaii, Alaska, Vegas, you name it. Once they had to play Hardin-Simmons in Abilene the night after they had been to Vegas. Needless to say, the Chiefs were tired and put on a pitiful performance against HSU. As punishment, Abe made the entire team stay out until 1 a.m. in Abilene. By ten o' clock they were all begging to come back to the motel, but Abe refused. There's probably not a deader town in America at one in the morning.

At a coaches conference Digger Phelps, coach at Notre Dame University, was talking about the big pressures on an 18 or 19 year old athlete playing for Notre Dame with all that tradition.   Lemons was heard at the back of the auditorium saying something like,  "I bet that an 18 year old Marine with his face down in the sand, under fire at Iwo Jima was thinking to himself, 'Gee, I'm glad I'm not a freshman at Notre Dame.'  " 

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