SI Vault
Joe Jares
September 06, 1976
Coach Hayden Fry, who wants North Texas State to attain enough status to allow the Mean Green to join the Southwest Conference, plays Texas early in the year. "We'll probably get whipped," he admits, "but you have to join 'em before you can beat 'em." Fry has changed just about everything at North Texas, including the team color, which is now apple green instead of Kelly green. But the status quo is more important; Fry has the top players back from the squad that upset Houston and Tennessee, including Nose Guard Walt Chapman, a 5'10", 245-pounder, and Free Safety J. T. Smith, both All-America candidates. He also has Ken ("Don't call me Kenny") Washington, younger brother of Joe Washington, the former Oklahoma All-America, who is exciting whether running or throwing on the run from Fry's pro-set offense.
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September 06, 1976


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Syracuse, a lowly 2-9 in 1974, would have ended up the most improved team in the country in 1975 if it had won its season finale against Rutgers. But it failed and finished 6-5, good but still disappointing. Despite Placekicker Dave Jacobs, who booted a 58-yarder among his 14 field goals, the Orange should do no better this fall. Holy Cross is rebuilding again.

Temple, which won its final five games, has a strong running attack (201.8 yards per game). At Villanova, the Owls' Philadelphia rival, Coach Dick Bedesem has installed a new wishbone offense and persuaded a wishbone quarterback named Dick Bedesem Jr. to transfer—from Temple. It will be virtually impossible for Navy to improve its 7-4 record, the Midshipmen's first winning year since 1967 and its best since 1963. Navy graduated 28 of 42 lettermen. Even so, it should beat Air Force and Army (2-8-1 and 2-9 last year) to retain the Commander-in-Chiefs Trophy.

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