The "monster" defense is merely a 5-4 alignment with an overshifted linebacker to the opponent's strong side. It was invented by Ray Graves, now the Florida coach, when both Graves and Broyles were assistants under Bobby Dodd at Georgia Tech. "We have maybe 16 or 17 variations on it now," says Broyles, "because athletes keep getting better, showing you more things you can do with them."
Strangely enough, the man who has refined this defense, adjusted to the passing game, replaced quick little men with quick big men, and who has put all of this together—the winning teams, the spirit, the organization—is relatively unknown outside the coaching fraternity. Who is Frank Broyles, anyhow? Even the most casual college fans have come to know Royal and Bryant, Duffy Daugherty and Ara Parseghian, and perhaps a few others. But Arkansas is so pastoral and remote, so new to success, that Broyles has remained unfamiliar. Last year, for example, although he had one of the only two teams with a perfect record after the bowl games, Broyles had to settle for co-Coach of the Year with Notre Dame's Parseghian.
He is, first of all, rich, or rapidly getting that way. Broyles's salary at Arkansas has risen through five raises in eight years from $15,000 to $23,500. This is a good deal for Arkansas President David Mullins, too. Under Arkansas custom the coach cannot earn more than the college president, so every time Broyles gets a raise, so does the president. The contract for his TV program ("It's incredible," says one coach) in Little Rock, seen throughout the state, nets him $10,000 more. Such lucrative arrangements do not make a man wealthy, of course, except that you can spend very little in Arkansas. Especially if people keep framing your checks instead of cashing them. It happens. Service stations, grocery stores, other small businesses, have framed Broyles's checks and hung them on their walls.
More important, Broyles's closest friend is Jack Stevens, a Little Rock millionaire. Stevens handles nearly all of Broyles's money, which is to say he invests it wisely. Broyles does not have any life-insurance costs—the university took out a $150,000 policy when he arrived. The car he drives is free, from a sponsor. Furthermore, until this year Broyles has never splurged. He used to give his wife, Barbara, a dishwasher for Christmas, but last time it was a mink. He used to give her a sewing machine for her birthday. Last time: a diamond. Finally, his home is being enlarged—he has six children—to about 3,800 square feet and a worth of some $55,000. Jack Stevens, one hears, has invested most wisely.
You would never guess, however, that Broyles would like to be wealthy—that he would like to do anything but play golf and coach football. He does not ever smoke or drink ("He's a grand guy," says a coaching associate, "but I wouldn't want to be trapped with him on V-J Day"), and he kicks off his shoes under the table of a fancy restaurant. His dialect is as southern as a plantation owner's, yet his manner of dress is neat, almost Ivy. He loves to talk. "One thing about Frank," says an appreciative football writer, "is that you call him up for a column, and you're stuck for an hour, getting eight columns."
Like most coaches Broyles is an incessant worrier, which forces him into nervous soliloquies, but when things are going well he is given to manic fits of verbal elation. He is lavish in his praise of his staff, to whom he delegates authority with ease and assurance. And he makes lightning decisions. "That's the main thing I learned from Dodd," he says. "You have to get good assistants and trust them, let them do their jobs and make your mind up quickly."
Largely, Broyles enjoys talking about Arkansas and how it was just sitting there, waiting for somebody to do the job.
"When I was at Georgia Tech, and we were constantly fighting Georgia for athletes, we used to sit around and think how wonderful it would be to have a whole state to ourselves," he says. "I tried like the dickens in 1953 to get this job, when they gave it to Bowden Wyatt, and I tried again in 1955, when they gave it to Jack Mitchell. But I'm glad now that I didn't get it then. It wasn't ready. It was perfect when I arrived. I knew it would be good—one school in the state with no pro team to compete for interest and the whole state against every Southwest Conference team. After all, I left my first head job at Missouri after only one year to get to Arkansas."
Broyles arrived in 1958 when Arkansas' physical plant was just taking shape. Athletic Director John Barnhill had been scrounging slowly for the funds, and getting them: to build the stadium in Little Rock, to enlarge the Fayetteville stadium, to build a new field house and a new athletic dormitory.
"Thanks to Barney," Broyles says, sincerely, " Arkansas had begun to lose its old image, that of a northwest Arkansas institution. At last, it had something good to show the athletes, and keep the good ones from leaving the state. South Arkansas kids used to go to LSU and east Arkansas kids used to slip away to Ole Miss. Well, look who got away. Players like Don Hutson, Bear Bryant, Ken Kavanaugh. Lots of 'em. In the old days, if you didn't sign a kid in his home, you didn't sign him. You couldn't let him see the campus."