Honored Players: 1938 – 1949
Jack Crain (Nocona; 1938)
“Jackrabbit” Crain was a two-time All-American running back at the University of Texas and finished 10th in the Heisman Trophy voting his senior year. After graduation, he served four terms as state representative for District 61 in Texas.
Hub Bechtol (Lubbock; 1943)
As an end at Texas in 1944, 1945 and 1946, Bechtol became the first Southwest Conference player to become a three-time All-American. In 1946 Cotton Bowl, he was on the receiving end of nine of Bobby Layne’s completions in a 40-27 win over Missouri. Played three seasons with the Baltimore Colts.
Bobby Layne (Highland Park; 1944)
Layne is a member of both the College Football and Pro Football hall of fames. Set 11 passing records as a quarterback at Texas and led the Longhorns to a 10-1-0 record his senior year. Led the Detroit Lions to NFL titles in 1952 and 1953 and quarterbacked the Pittsburgh Steelers to an NFL championship in 1957.
Dick Harris (Wichita Falls; 1945)
Played both center and guard at Texas and joined Bobby Layne as the only Longhorns to win All-Southwest Conference honors four times. Was first-round draft pick of Chicago Bears in 1949.
Lindy Berry (Wichita Falls; 1946)
An All-American quarterback at TCU his senior season, Berry was a key player for the Frogs for four years. He was All-Southwest Conference as a junior and senior. As a sophomore, he led the nation in punt returns with 494 yards and as a junior was fourth in the nation in total offense.
Hayden Fry (Odessa; 1947)
Although he was a good college quarterback at Baylor, Fry made his name as a college coach. He was head coach at SMU, North Texas an Iowa. At SMU, he signed the first African American recruit in Southwest Conference history, Jerry Levias. He coached 20 seasons at Iowa and retired with 232 Division I victories.
Bud McFadin (Iraan; 1947)
Played offensive guard and defensive tackle for Texas from 1948 through 1950 and made All-American both ways and was inducted into the College Football Hall of Fame in 1983. Was the MVP of the Chicago Tribune All-Star Game after his senior year and played professionally for the Rams, Broncos and Oilers.
Billy Howton (Plainview; 1948)
After playing college football at Rice, Howton spent 12 seasons in the NFL with Green Bay, Cleveland and Dallas. A four-time Pro Bowler, he caught 503 for 8,459 yards and 61 TDs.
Byron Townsend (Odessa; 1948)
An All-Southwest Conference running back at Texas in 1950 Ran for 105 yards and a touchdown against Tennessee in the 1951 Cotton Bowl.
Eddie Crowder (Muskogee; 1949)
An All-American quarterback and safety for Oklahoma for 1950-52 and was a member of OU’s first national championship team in 1959. Drafted by the New York Giants but a nerve injury in his throwing arm prevented him from having an NFL career. Instead, he went into coaching and became head coach and later athletic director at Colorado.
Buck McPhail (Oklahoma City; 1949)
In 1951, McPhail was an All-American at OU as he and Heisman Trophy winner Billy Vessels made up one of the greatest rushing tandems of all-time. McPhail set a national collegiate record that year by averaging 8.56 yards per rush. Drafted by the Baltimore Colts in 1953.