Mrs. Worster: You're not playing. You'll injure your body.
Steve: My body's not hurt. It's my hip.
Worster thought his body was hurt after the opening kickoff, however. His shoulder, at least. He took a lick on it, and that made the hip start hurting, too. "But I couldn't get any sympathy from anybody," he said, "so I just decided I'd have to play no matter what."
Which is the way all the Longhorns felt on the way to their 30th win in a row and the challenge of playing Notre Dame again in the Cotton Bowl.
"It was the most inspired Texas team we've met," Broyles sighed. "And you'd have to say the best."
That was just the team. You should have seen the town. The pregame madness of a Texas-Arkansas weekend has gotten to be as much fun as anything. Last year, of course, there was a President on hand in tiny Fayetteville and the teams were ranked No. 1 and No. 2 and playing for their very lives. But it has been a fairly big shoot-out every year since Royal arrived at Texas and Broyles arrived at Arkansas. Sometimes they might be playing for something ordinary, like one of the seven Southwest Conference championships Royal has now won, but an uncommon number of times a national title has been the prize. Last week Darrell got his hands on another of those—his third.
Unusual mystery was added to the buildup when Royal, for the first time in his career, held private practices every day but Friday.
"Not to put in the spread or the quick kick," he grinned. "Just to keep the kids from being bothered. We'll play each other normal, like always."
Early on, Royal had moaned about injuries, and this amused Broyles. "They'll all play," he predicted, "but Darrell will act like they can't unless Oral Roberts heals 'em."
When Worster's hip bruise progressed to the point where it appeared he could start, Broyles said, "Told you so." Royal said, "I'm damn sure not going to apologize for Steve getting better."