Meet Kern Tips and Legendary Southwest Conference Ted Buss
As a spindly ten-something kid in a neighborhood among others of similar stature, we would gather on the biggest, coziest lawn on fall Saturdays and play football.
It was maybe five or six to a side where wobbly passes were caught and dropped and the arm tackle wasn’t as painful as it looked.
But the game was only part of the scene. Imagination was dominant through a creaky little AM radio setting on the porch.
At noon, the Humble Network’s Southwest Conference “Game of the Week” was set to air on Kern Tips. His voice was classic, a bit like Keith Jackson and Lindsey Nelson.
If Saturday’s game was between Baylor and Arkansas, one side would be the Bears and the other the Razorbacks. We imitated the radio parts and took time outs to hear a pitchman talk about the longevity of a gas tank from a Humble pump at 20 cents a gallon.
We all had our favorite teams and players, and the back window of Dad’s clunker was covered in logo stickers featuring teams from across the big SWC. Kindly, my old dad would say, “Shit, boy. How many more of these things are you going to put on the car? »
I loved hearing Kern mention Billy Howton and the Owls. . . Kyle Rote and the Mustangs. . .the cotton Davidson of the bears . . . Don Maroney of the Longhorns. . . Preston Carpenter and the Razorbacks. . . Yale Lary of the Aggies. . . and Jim Swink and Chuck Curtis of the TCU Horned Frogs.
I mention all of this to let you know that I am one traditionalist among many who still savor the old days of college football. We will never change. Not now. Never . . . No no never. Believe it or not, ours was the best of college football eras.
Oh, we’ll always follow our favorite teams, and many of us understand why college football turned pro. It has become unavoidable. We are talking about large companies.
Major college programs pump millions into their schools’ coffers, and the college with the most money to buy players wins, YEA!
A tidy roster of coaches is now being paid between three and six million or more a year in hopes of reaching the bottom four. Where 50,000 was a good crowd in 1951, up to 100,000 and more is not unusual today.
It stands to reason that with so much loot collected each year, why shouldn’t the players responsible for it share the loot? Face it. It’s like that. And what was will never be again. Poetic, huh?
Never mind. We of the 50s were the lucky ones.
Ted Spud Bus column appears every other Sunday in the Times Record News.