Darrell Royal, who coached the University of Texas to three national titles and became the biggest college football icon in a state that worships the sport, has died at age 88. On the field, Royal was known for his play-calling genius, taking the biggest of risks in the biggest of games. Off the field, he rose from humble beginnings during the depths of the Depression to become a homespun populist rivaling Will Rogers. Royal was the winningest coach in University of Texas history, compiling a 167-47-5 record in 20 seasons from 1957-76. In recent years, Royal battled Alzheimer’s disease, but he made one last appearance at a game this season, participating in the ceremonial coin toss before Texas’ win over Wyoming.
Austin (Texas) American-Statesman