Broyles' Legacy Is All Around Us

Arkansas Chancellor John White said upon the occasion of Frank Broyles' announced retirement as UA athletic director on Saturday, "No one has made a greater impact on the University of Arkansas."

Borrowing from Christopher Wren, White added about Broyles, "If you seek his monument, look around you." Newspaper space constraints limited the encomiums to Broyles on Sunday, but today I want to restore some of what was left out. Tommy Boyer, a former Arkansas basketball player who has worked with Broyles on several projects, reminded, "When I came here in 1959, the only full-time coaches were in football and basketball, and the only athletic scholarships were in those two sports. The basketball budget was $50,000 a year. Frank once told me, 'Tommy, you were lucky to have a bus ride to the games.' The total athletic budget was $900,000. "Lance Alworth led Arkansas to three straight Southwest Conference championships in 1959-1961, but when Frank became athletic director in 1973 the budget was still just $1.2 million. Today the men's athletic budget is $39 million, and that's one of the smallest in the country for a big-time school. "Frank is one of the greatest fund raisers you'll ever see. When he takes on a project, it will be done to the end in an efficient and cost-effective manner." Harold Horton, vice president of the Razorback Foundation, said, "Everyone knows about our national championship in football in 1964, and all our great facilities. Not talked about as much is the $39 million athletic budget -- how it all comes from dollars coach Broyles helped generate through ticket sales, premium seats, donations. I think that's one of our greatest achievements." Horton also noted that before Broyles spoke in a packed gym last Monday night at a Razorback Club meeting at Sacred Heart High in Morrilton, Broyles and Horton drove to Conway, where Broyles visited patients in a hospital and lifted spirits throughout the building. "You could see it in their faces when he walked into a room," Horton said. Brad McMakin, Arkansas' new golf coach, said, "It's been a pleasure working for a guy who gives you every opportunity to be successful. Coach Broyles is a coach's boss. He understands injuries and things that people on the outside don't see. "Five minutes into my interview here, I felt good because of his passion. Nothing means more to him than the Razorbacks and you can see that." Eddie Sutton, UA basketball coach from 1974-1985 and newly named finalist for the Basketball Hall of Fame, said, "I talked to Frank last week and thought he'd probably try to stay on. But he may be tired of handling all the problems. But for anyone to stay at one school for 50 years is remarkable. "I can remember when Frank offered me the Arkansas job, and Dean Smith and Bob Knight urged me to stay at Creighton and said I would get a Big 10 or ACC job in two years. But I'm so glad Frank hired me." Sutton, by the way, has undergone back surgery, feels better than he has in three years and said he no longer looks like "the hunchback of Notre Dame." Plans called for him to critique a UA basketball practice or two this season, but he's been busy working two days a week for a bank and raising $5 million for an addiction center in Stillwater, Okla. Ken Hatfield, former UA football player and coach, commended Broyles on Friday and, in turn, was mentioned by former teammate and UA Trustee Jim Lindsey on Saturday as a "great candidate" to succeed Broyles. When I asked Hatfield, a Springdale resident, on Friday about his name being linked to the Arkansas AD job, he responded, "The first thing -- it (Broyles' decision) is a shock. I didn't expect anything to happen right now. I think if the UA is smart, they'll listen to coach Broyles. He'll know some that are good at it and some that have worked under him." Dallas Cowboys owner Jerry Jones, another former Razorback from the 1964 championship team, noted that Broyles was a management major who "understood the arithmetic of getting things paid for." Interestingly, Lindsey said about Hatfield, "He's a mathematician, a businessperson, he's high in intelligence." White, citing the leaks of the past two weeks, has eschewed a search committee and will go his own way in finding a new AD. "I've already talked to the commissioners of the Big 10 and Big 12," White said Saturday. "I'm going to talk on pay phones and ride on a magic carpet." The way Broyles sees it, he's been on a magic-carpet ride of his own for 49 years, two months at Arkansas. GRANT HALL IS A MORNING NEWS SPORTS WRITER. HIS COLUMN APPEARS EACH MONDAY AND THURSDAY. E-MAIL: GHALL@NWAONLINE.NET

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