ORG XMIT: TXJP103 Actor Matthew McConaughey, left, and former Texas Longhorns football coach Darrell Royal enloy their evening at the Texas Film Hall of Fame Awards in Austin, Texas, Friday, March 10, 2006. McConaughey was honored along with actresses JoBeth Williams and Cybill Shepherd, actor/musician Kris Kristofferson, and musician Lyle Lovett.(AP Photo/Jack Plunkett)

Football

Texas countdown to football: 5 memorable Darrell Royal quotes

Posted August 22nd, 2016

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The football season is approaching fast, and Texas fans are getting excited. Counting today, there are 14 days until the start of the football season. To help celebrate, we’re counting down five things every day until the start of the season.

Darrell Royal is one of the most famous coaches in college football history. He’s also regarded as one of the greatest quotable coaches in the history of the sport. Sometimes he said quotes about football. Sometimes he said quotes about everything but football.

Cedric Golden came up with a list of Royalism four years ago, but we’re cutting it down to five. 

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Here are five Darrell Royal quotes every Texas Longhorn fan should know: 

5.

If worms carried pistols, birds wouldn’t eat ‘em.”

Self explanatory. Surprised this quote isn’t hanging around campus somewhere. 

4.

Three things can happen when you pass, and two of ‘em are bad.”

Royal certainly believed this. Quarterback Bobby Lackey once threw just 23 passes in a season for Royal. Texas hasn’t lived by this slogan in a long time. In fact, Colt McCoy went on to become one the greatest passers ever at Texas. 

10/30/10 Ralph Barrera/AMERICAN-STATESMAN; Texas hosts Baylor in a Big 12 game at Darrell K. Royal Texas Memorial Stadium in Austin, TX.--Texas' lost their third straight home game as Baylor came away with a 30-22 victory Saturday night on the day former quarterback Colt McCoy had his jersey number retired before the game with head coach Mack Brown helping out.
10/30/10 Ralph Barrera/AMERICAN-STATESMAN; Texas hosts Baylor in a Big 12 game at Darrell K. Royal Texas Memorial Stadium in Austin, TX.–Texas’ lost their third straight home game as Baylor came away with a 30-22 victory Saturday night on the day former quarterback Colt McCoy had his jersey number retired before the game with head coach Mack Brown helping out.

3.

Hell, no, I’m not going to candy this thing up. These are work clothes.”

When someone asked Royal if the Longhorns should change their jerseys, this is what he said. And we stand by it to this day. Why change perfection? Every Longhorn fan should remember this when they say, “You know what would look awesome, black jerseys!” And we should probably stay away from advertising on the jerseys, something we’re guessing former athletic director Steve Patterson would have green-lit. 

Plus, did anyone really like these?

Texas QB Tyrone Swoopes (18) will start the first practice over Jerrod Heard
Texas QB Tyrone Swoopes (18) will start the first practice over Jerrod Heard

2.

 (TCU) is like a bunch of cockroaches. It’s not what they eat and tote off, it’s what they fall into and mess up that hurts.”

What, you thought the most searing quote from Royal would be about Texas A&M? You would be wrong. No telling if TCU thought this was a compliment at the time or not. Probably not compliment. Royal said this before  the 1962 TCU game. The year before No.1-ranked Texas lost to the Horned Frogs 6-0. Here’s more on the quote. 

11/22/12 Ralph Barrera/American-Statesman; TCU vs Texas at Darrell K. Royal Texas Memorial Stadium, Thursday November 22, 2012-- TCU's head coach Gary Patterson celebrates his team's second touchdown during second quarter action.
11/22/12 Ralph Barrera/American-Statesman; TCU vs Texas at Darrell K. Royal Texas Memorial Stadium, Thursday November 22, 2012– TCU’s head coach Gary Patterson celebrates his team’s second touchdown during second quarter action.

1.

Sometimes you have to suck it up and call a number.”

Is he talking about football or talking about asking a girl out? I’m not sure, but it works in both instances. This quote came from the 1969 Arkansas game when James Street connected with Randy Peschel on a game-changing play.

Texas Longhorns, Forrest Weigand (52), and Randy Peschel signal Jim Bertelsen's two yard touch down score that led to the 15-14 win over Arkansas and the National Champioship in 1969. President Nixon attended the game and presented Coach darrell Royal and the Longhorns with the champioship award. Houston Chronicle file photo ORG XMIT:
Texas Longhorns, Forrest Weigand (52), and Randy Peschel signal Jim Bertelsen’s two yard touch down score that led to the 15-14 win over Arkansas and the National Champioship in 1969. President Nixon attended the game and presented Coach darrell Royal and the Longhorns with the champioship award. Houston Chronicle file photo ORG XMIT:

Because we’re having fun, here are a few more quotes we found that blew us away:

He’s smoother than smoke through a key hole.”

Will Rogers never met Barry Switzer.”

Staff photo by Kevin Virobik-Adams. Texas coaching legend Darrel Royal, left, takes a break from his golfing Monday to pose with Dallas Cowboys' owner Jerry Jones and new head coach Barry Switzer, who battled Royal as Oklahoma head coach in the early '70's.
Staff photo by Kevin Virobik-Adams. Texas coaching legend Darrel Royal, left, takes a break from his golfing Monday to pose with Dallas Cowboys’ owner Jerry Jones and new head coach Barry Switzer, who battled Royal as Oklahoma head coach in the early ’70’s.

He doesn’t have a lot of speed, but maybe Elizabeth Taylor can’t sing.”

I do not let a bad score ruin my enjoyment for golf.”

7/1/04 Ralph Barrera/AMERICAN-STATESMAN; The legendary Darrell Royal, of the University of Texas fame, is turning 80 years old. We take a look at his life as he approaches this birthday milestone. He spents the better part of his days playing golf at Barton Creek Country Club. Coach Royal watches his approach shot on the par 4 sixth hole at the Crenshaw course during a recent round. (Robbins story)
7/1/04 Ralph Barrera/AMERICAN-STATESMAN; The legendary Darrell Royal, of the University of Texas fame, is turning 80 years old. We take a look at his life as he approaches this birthday milestone. He spents the better part of his days playing golf at Barton Creek Country Club. Coach Royal watches his approach shot on the par 4 sixth hole at the Crenshaw course during a recent round. (Robbins story)

If everything had already been done, there would be nothing left for young people to accomplish. There are always going to be people who run faster, jump higher, dive deeper and come up drier.”

(L-R) Robert Ferem, Darrell Royal, Monty Johnson, and Danny Lestetr. Coach Royal flew in and signed these three players from Tascosa. Ferem never went to Texas, he went to Oklahoma. Monty went to Oklahoma after Spring training in 1968, ORG XMIT:
(L-R) Robert Ferem, Darrell Royal, Monty Johnson, and Danny Lestetr. Coach Royal flew in and signed these three players from Tascosa. Ferem never went to Texas, he went to Oklahoma. Monty went to Oklahoma after Spring training in 1968, ORG XMIT:

Don’t matter what they throw at us. Only angry people win football games. “

ORG XMIT: APHS79254 University of Texas head coach Darrell Royal, left, holds back any feeling about his Longhorns' scoring a touchdown with 39 seconds to go against the University of Oklahoma in Dallas, Oct. 12, 1968. Appearing equally grim is Texas assistant coach RM Patterson, right. (AP Photo)
ORG XMIT: APHS79254 University of Texas head coach Darrell Royal, left, holds back any feeling about his Longhorns’ scoring a touchdown with 39 seconds to go against the University of Oklahoma in Dallas, Oct. 12, 1968. Appearing equally grim is Texas assistant coach RM Patterson, right. (AP Photo)

Punt returns will kill you quicker than a minnow can swim a dipper.”

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