Switzer tales: Returning to Eufaula
Barry Switzer doesn’t accept most speaking engagements, for two reasons. 1. There are too many; he’d have to filter requests from too many people and too many organizations. 2. He doesn’t want to be tied down.
Switzer said that in the “fourth quarter” of his life, “I like calling my own plays. If I get a chance to go to Vegas or the Bahamas, I want to be able to go.”
But a few weeks ago, Switzer made an exception. For the first time in 22 years, he spoke at a high school athletic banquet. Eufaula’s.
And Switzer didn’t mince words when he spoke: “I’m here because of the three Selmons (Lucious, Lee Roy, Dewey), J.C. Watts and Rusty Griffis.” Those were the five Eufaula players who played for OU from 1971-80.
Switzer said he agreed to come at the behest of Gary Moores, a Eufaula booster who helped OU recruit the players. The only other person who could have enticed Switzer, he said, was the late Paul Bell, Eufaula’s legendary coach.
“Y’all going to get a history lesson tonight,” Switzer told the crowd. “How many Aggies are here tonight? Y’all not going to enjoy this. From the time the Selmons started playing for us until they left, our record was 54-3-1.”
And the pipeline might never have started. In 1970, the best lineman prospect in Oklahoma, Midwest City’s Barry Price, chose Oklahoma State late in the process. That left OU with a free scholarship, and the staff debated whether to take Lucious Selmon, a fullback at Eufaula.
“Lucious thinks he’s going to be the next Jim Brown,” Switzer said. Switzer took one look at Lucious and said, “‘Hell, yeah, let’s take him. He’s built like Godzilla.’ And I haven’t even seen Lee Roy and Dewey yet.”
Lucious was a superb defensive lineman, 1971-73, and in ’73 started at nose guard with his little brothers starting as sophomore defensive tackles. 1973 might have been OU’s greatest defense ever. Both Dewey and Lee Roy eventually made all-American; Lee Roy won the Outland Trophy, eventually was inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame and generally is considered the greatest Sooner player ever.
Long forgotten is that 1972, Lee Roy’s and Dewey’s freshman seasons, was the year freshman eligibility was reinstated. But in 1972, OU had two excellent defensive tackles: Raymond Hamilton and Derland Moore. Hamilton played nine years in the NFL and made 117 starts with the Patriots; Moore played 14 years in the NFL and made 146 starts with the Saints.
Message Sent Successfully
Be Sure to Check Out Our Top Headlines
- 22062Oklahoma baseball: Joe Simpson 'thrilled' that Sunny Golloway left OU
- 13856Tom Ward is out as SandRidge's CEO
- 11034Classen School of Advanced Studies valedictorian disappears while hiking with family in Ecuador
- 10900UPDATE: I-40 reopened at Shields after fatal wreck
- 7641Will Oklahomans get on board with new water toy?
- 7472Oklahoma State football: A stunning success story at the box office
- 6309Oklahoma State football: Mike Gundy lifts Wes Lunt restrictions, but too late
- 5703Get App-y: Google Glass to offer heads-up computing
- 5621Prosecutors say stolen car was at heart of 2011 fatal shootings in Oklahoma City
- 5179Team Blake's Danielle Bradbery wins "The Voice"; The Swon Brothers finish in third place
Back to share with a friend form.
Add More Recipients