Monday, May 20, 2013

Baylor artifact: my record of the 1983 football season

On the shelf of Elliot's room sits a piece of my childhood.  I must have picked up this button, which is about 6 inches in diameter, on one of my many trips to the Baylor Bookstore.  On the back, I kept a record of the 1983 football season, which was not a bad one. 

After 1982's rather disappointing 4-6-1 season, in which they were 5th in the Southwest Conference, Cody Carlson, Gerald McNeil and Alfred Anderson led the Bears to a tie for 3rd in the SWC and the Bluebonnet Bowl. 

The opening game against BYU in Waco, the first-ever meeting the Baptists and the Mormons, was a classic.  Late in the 4th quarter, Baylor trailed 36-33.  The Bears methodically moved the ball down the field, capping the drive with Anderson leaping over the crowd for the touchdown with 49 seconds left.  This was BYU's only loss for the season.  Steve Young led the Cougars to win the WAC and beat Missouri in the Holiday Bowl, ending the season ranked in the top 10. Someone posted the final drive on YouTube!
Baylor didn't fare quite as well, losing to Texas Tech and 13th ranked SMU, and tying with Texas A&M.  The regular season ended with a heartbreaking loss to #2 ranked Texas in Austin.  Despite getting behind 17-0 to the undefeated Longhorns, Baylor scored 2 TDs in the 4th quarter, losing 24-21.  Texas beat A&M the next week, finishing the season at 11-0, but lost 10-9 to #7 Georgia in the Cotton Bowl.
Baylor's performance against Texas earned them a #20 ranking and a trip to the Bluebonnet Bowl to face Oklahoma State in the Astrodome.  Unfortunately, Baylor got behind 21-0 in the first half.  Even though they knocked out the OSU QB and held the Cowboys scoreless in the second half, the Bears couldn't gain any ground and lost 24-14. 

I was 14 during the 1983 football season.  Elliot will be 14 for this year's season.  Here's hoping we'll see some upsets, a winning record, and a bowl game!

Relive the pain!  The 1983 Bluebonnet Bowl is on YouTube, too!
First half:
Second half:

The Baylor Libraries Athletic Archive has a neat scrapbook of the 1983 football season that Marjorie Hayden put together for Grant Teaff.