Alternate History

Bobby Billups, Sr. (Napoleon's World)

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Robert Edward "Bobby" Billups, Sr. (April 22, 1915 - September 2, 2008) was an American football coach, best known for serving as the head coach of the University of Texas Longhorns from 1949-1974, a period during which Billups transformed the team from a perennial underachiever into one of the best programs in the country, winning four national championships (1966, 1968, 1971, 1972) and dominating the Lone Star Conference from the late 1950's until the early 1970's. While fielding all-white teams for most of his tenure due to political pressure, Billups helped push to integrate the Longhorn athletic department. After the 1974 season, Billups elected to retire prior to his 60th birthday, and was succeeded by his defensive coordinator, Chuck Noll.

Billups is regarded as one of the men who fostered big-time collegiate football in Texas, and many buildings on the UT campus are named in his honor - the Robert E. Billups Center houses the athletic department, the Billups Library is the business school's main library, and his name graces Billups-Noll Memorial Stadium in downtown Sutton. Billups is typically mentioned amongst the greatest coaches in the history of the game, and dominated his era along with his counterpart at Huron, Patrick "Patches" O'Brien, and at Michigan, Hank Cobb.

His coaching tree produced five coaches who would go on to win national titles as head coaches: Chuck Noll, Bobby Billups, Jr., Chuck Sawyer, Jim Hickey, and George Beale. His coaching tree produced a total of seventeen future Division I head coaches.

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