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Classic SI photo by Peter Read Miller

What a Rush

Among the greatest running backs of all-time, Emmitt Smith has won four NFL rushing titles and three Super Bowl titles. He was named MVP of the 1993 regular season and MVP of the Super Bowl that followed. Last year, at age 33 and in his 13th season with the Dallas Cowboys, Smith broke Walter Payton's record of 16,726 yards to become the leading rusher in NFL history.

FACES IN THE CROWD

Tamika Catchings Duncanville
June 2, 1997 -- Tamika, who is headed to Tennessee, had 21.0 points, 10.1 rebounds and 4.3 assists a game as the Pantherettes ran up a 40-0 record, won the Class 5A state title and earned the No. 2 national ranking.

Career highlight: Four-time All-American at Tennessee, WNBA Rookie of the Year in 2002.
Then photo by Jim Midgett, Now photo by M. David Leeds/Getty Images


Anthony (Spud) Webb Dallas
May 24, 1982 -- Wilson, a 6' 4" sophomore forward, and Webb, a 5' 6" freshman guard, averaged 24.3 and 20.5 points a game, respectively, to lead Midland (Texas) College to a 34-4 record and the national junior college basketball championship. Webb scored a game-high 36 points in Midland's 93-88 win over Miami Dade-North in the title game and despite his size had about 40 dunks this season.
Career highlight: Slam-dunk champion at 1986 NBA All-Star game.
Now photo by Al Bello/Allsport


Johnny Bailey Houston
Jan. 5, 1987 -- Bailey, who is a 5' 9' 180-pound freshman running back for Texas A & I, broke the NCAA Division II single-season rushing mark with 2,010 yards, surpassing the record of 1,775 set by Jim Holder of Panhandle State (Okla.) in 1963.
Career highlight: Only non-Division I player to make Football Writers Association All-America team.
Now photo by Al Bello/Allsport

GREATEST ATHLETES
Babe Didrikson Zaharias, Beaumont
Won five events at 1932 AAU track and field championships, and two weeks later took two Olympic gold medals; '47 British Amateur champ won 31 pro golf tournaments.

Ben Hogan, Fort Worth
Four-time PGA Player of Year; one of four men to win all four majors, including four U.S. Opens.
Doak Walker, Dallas
Starred at SMU from 1947 to '49 as all-purpose player; won two NFL scoring titles in six years with Lions.
SI Sportstown: The Colony, Texas


FLASHBACK
1991: Citizen Ryan
Down home in Alvin, Texas, Nolan Ryan is an old-fashioned cowboy
The last 45 minutes of Texas twilight have arrived. The day has been gray anyway, cool, and now the colors begin to fade even further as the unseen sun dips toward the trees at the edge of the pasture. The birds know that night is coming. Hear them squawk?
FULL STORY



SI COVERS
Classic SI cover Lone Star Shining The 1973 Sports Illustrated college football preview issue predicted the horns would hook 'em. The famous hand signal was introduced to Texas football fans at a 1955 pep rally.

Click here to view a gallery of every Texas cover

THE SI POLL
Who do Texans root for? SI asked the Lone Star State residents to weigh in* on sports.
Favorite major league baseball team
Texas Rangers
37%
Houston Astros
20%
New York Yankees
7%


Favorite NFL team
Dallas Cowboys
45%
Houston Texans
17%
Green Bay Packers
4%


Favorite NBA team
Dallas Mavericks
35%
Houston Rockets
16%
San Antonio Spurs
16%
No favorite
20%


Favorite NHL team
Dallas Stars/div>
50%
Detroit Red Wings
3%
No favorite
35%


Favorite pro team
Dallas Cowboys
26%
Dallas Mavericks
9%
San Antonio Spurs
8%
Texas Rangers
7%
Greatest athlete who ever lived in or played for a team in your state
Nolan Ryan
20%
Roger Staubach
18%
Emmitt Smith
14%
Earl Campbell
9%


State's biggest sports rivalry
Texas-Texas A&M
56%
Texas-Oklahoma
15%
Cowboys-Texans
7%


Favorite Sports to play
Fishing
14%
Swimming
13%
Baseball-softball
12%
Basketball
12%
Golf
12%
Football
10%


Favorite sports to watch on television**
Football
78%
Basketball
46%
Summer Olympics
46%
Winter Olympics
46%
Baseball
40%
Hockey
27%
Auto racing
26%
**Multiple responses allowed
 
State's biggest rival
Oklahoma
52%
California
11%
New York
5%
Florida
3%
Washington
3%


Favorite living sports announcer
John Madden
34%
Dick Vitale
20%
Terry Bradshaw (tie)
13%
Vin Scully (tie)
13%


Which is more important -- sports or sex?
Sex
57%
Sports
12%
Declined to answer
31%


FUN FACT
Thirty-seven percent of respondents say they have openly booed a referee or official during the past 12 months. Thirty-one percent have prayed for their team to win during that span.
* Harris Interactive poll, conducted online, of 410 Texas residents who identified themselves as sports fans. Margin of error +/- 4.8%.
Sports Illustrated's 50th Anniversary
The heart of Texas

Friday nights are all about high school football in the Lone Star State, where the sport is as big as the state itself. Just about everyone follows football under the lights, even future Presidents. George W. Bush, who grew up in West Texas, explains why his home state takes its sports so seriously. And SI.com digs into the SI archives to find famous Faces in the Crowd, Flashbacks and other significant moments in Texas sports history.


Friday Night Football
• SI Sportstown: The Colony, Texas
Texas' 50 greatest athletes
What's your top Texas sports memory?
SI 50th Tour Information

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STATITUDES
3,909 Number of strikeouts thrown by Katy, Texas native Roger Clemens entering the 2003 baseball season.

4 Number of Roger Clemens' children whose names begin with the letter "K".

2 Number of Texas-based Major League Baseball teams that retired Nolan Ryan's uniform number (No. 34, Rangers and Astros).

1,320 SAT score of San Antonio Spurs center David Robinson.

50 Dollars Dallas Cowboys cheerleaders are paid per home game.

4 Styles of basketball shoes named after Sheryl Swoopes of the Houston Comets (Air Swoopes, Air Swoopes Zoom, Air Swoopes IV, Air Tuned Swoopes.)

66 Consecutive NFL drafts in which at least one player from the Texas Longhorns has been selected, an NFL record.

26-7 Final score of the first intercollegiate football contest to use instant video replay (Texas Tech defeated Kansas on Sept. 18, 1965).

FAST FACTS
Admission to statehood: Dec. 29, 1845 (28th state)

Area: 268,601 square miles

Bird: Mockingbird

Capital: Austin

Economy: Agriculture -- Cattle, cotton, dairy products, nursery stock, poultry, sorghum, corn, wheat. Industry -- Chemical products, petroleum and natural gas, food processing, electric equipment, machinery, mining, tourism.

Flower: Bluebonnet (Lupins texensis)

Nickname: Lone Star State

 
Population: 20,851,820 (2nd)

Pro sports teams: Dallas Cowboys (NFL), Houston Texans (NFL), San Antonio Spurs (NBA), Houston Astros (MLB), Texas Rangers (MLB), Houston Rockets (NBA), Dallas Mavericks (NBA), Dallas Stars (NHL), Houston Comets (WNBA), Dallas Burn (MLS)

Major college programs: Baylor Bears, Houston Cougars, Rice Owls, Texas A&M Aggies, Texas Longhorns, Texas Tech Red Raiders


ENEMY OF THE STATE
Jerry Jones
Forget those three Super Bowl wins the Cowboys' owner and Arkansas businessman brought to Dallas; he's now to blame for the team's recent decline. The most hated opponent of respondents: the Oklahoma Sooners (34%), the Washington Redskins (19%) and the Los Angeles Lakers (5%).

Jerry Jones
32%
Bud Adams
14%
Shaquille O'Neal
7%
SI 50th POLL
Who is your favorite Dallas Cowboy of all time?






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