But come Jan. 21, Houston Nutt will become the first after being selected Tuesday to coach the East squad in the nation's longest running all-star game which annually hosts college football's top seniors.
Texas A&M's Dennis Franchione was named the coach of the West squad.
"It is our distinct pleasure to have Coach Nutt and Coach Franchione as our head coaches for the 81st East-West Shrine Game," said Shrine Game executive director Jack Hart in a release. "They are among the very best coaches in the country, and represent two fine universities and two outstanding conferences."
Nutt has been a consistent winner by posting a 53-33 record since taking over at Arkansas in 1997. He became only the second coach in school history to lead his team to a bowl appearance in each of his first six seasons and leads the Southeastern Conference in home victories since 1997 with 38.
"It's quite an honor," said Nutt, who was named Football News' National Coach of the Year in 1998 and previously coached at Murray State and Boise State. "I don't know that much about it other than watching it on TV, so I'm really looking forward to being a part of it and I'm just really appreciative of all the guys on the selection committee for asking me to coach in it.
"I think it gives our university some nice exposure because we should get some of our players in the game which will really help."
The venue was moved from San Francisco to San Antonio's Alamodome in April, which made the invite even more appealing to Nutt since he regularly makes in-home visits to recruits throughout January. With the game now in Texas, where Nutt often courts a handful of prospects, the decision was easy.
"Now, I don't have anything against San Francisco," Nutt said. "But if the game was still out there, I probably wouldn't have done it because we're not going to let it interfere with our recruiting.
"They made it very clear that I could still have home visits at night. If I couldn't have had those visits, it would have been a tough deal to accept."
Every year, the East-West Shrine Game is played in order to help raise money and awareness for the orthopedic and burn care available at 22 Shriners Hospitals for children at no cost. To date, the game has raised more than $14 million and has treated more than 750,000 children.
Nutt To Coach In Shrine Game
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