The Texas football program dates back to 1893. Each day, we look at a little piece of Longhorn history. We’re starting by looking at each Longhorn football season.
One of the biggest years in Texas football history is also one of the worst seasons in Texas football history.
The only team to come close to matching the 1956 Texas’ squads futility in the last 60 years has been the 1997 4-7 Texas squad and the 1988 4-7 Texas team.
The 1-9 season for Texas in 1956 is the worst record in school history. Previously, Dana X. Bible’s 1938 season held that distinction with a 1-8 record, but Price matched it. The only win came on the road against Tulane.
The 1956 season is the only year in which Texas failed to win a home a game.
The saddest thing about this total collapse is that it came with a life-long Longhorn at the helm. Few Texas alums have coached the Longhorns, and even fewer coaches spent as many years on the Longhorn coaching staff as Price. Since 1930, he had only spent three years away from the Texas football program and was on staff during the best seasons in Texas history, and the star of his tenure at Texas brought a lot of success.
Then it all went downhill.
Price said it was due to changes in the rules for college football, but many thought it was his mild-mannered nature that led to lack of recruiting that caused the decline.
After 25 years as a member of the Longhorns athletic department, Price said he loved the University of Texas too much to continue being the head coach and announced he was leaving “for the good of the team.”
He resigned following a 34-21 loss to No. 5-ranked Texas A&M. It capped a season that saw No. 1-ranked Oklahoma, in the midst of a three-year undefeated streak that lasted 47-straight games under coach Bud Wilkinson, a record that still stands today, beat Texas 45-0.
There was a happy ending of sorts for Price, though. he didn’t leave the University of Texas, instead he became a teacher in the physical education department and climbed the ladder to become assistant dean of students, a position he held for years before retiring. He was inducted into the Longhorn Hall of Honor in 1967.
The 1956 season would also be the last for athletic director Dana X. Bible, but not before he hired a new football coach to replace Price.
Bible made a call to the University of Washington head coach, and the rest is history.
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