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THE CAMERA CATCHES A THIEF
A BIG CHOICE IN TEXAS
A filling station in Abilene, Texas did a whopping business this spring. "Most of the visitors came with an empty tank," says Bill Gregory, the proprietor, "and I wasn't afraid of them filling up anywhere else." The reason for all of this unsolicited prosperity was Bill's son, Glynn, perhaps the most remarkable and the most promising high school athlete in Texas history. At 18 and still a growing boy, Glynn stands 6 feet 2 inches, weighs 190 pounds and moves with the grace and speed of a cheetah. At Abilene High he led the football team to 37 straight victories and three state championships, and Old Pro Sammy Baugh, who has seen several generations of Texas high school players, said Glynn was the greatest he had ever seen. Last season Glynn scored 23 touchdowns, kicked 56 extra points and carried the ball for 1,130 yards.
With graduation time coming on for Glynn Gregory, college scouts from coast to coast poured into Abilene like gold miners into the Klondike, arriving at the Gregory service station on their last teacup of gasoline. Soon Glynn had offers from more than 30 colleges. Since Glynn was an all-state catcher and a fine switch hitter on the baseball team, he was even offered a $75,000 bonus to sign with the Cleveland Indians, but he turned that down quickly. "You can't value a college education in dollars and cents," he said. "But I think a college education is worth a million, as far as that goes."
It wasn't long before Glynn was off on a hectic two-week tour of college campuses on which he never once paid for a meal or for lodging. He went to the NCAA track meet in Austin, Texas as the guest of the University of Texas, and he visited the University of Oklahoma campus in Norman, where he was treated like visiting royalty by All-Americas Jerry Tubbs and Tommy McDonald. Vastly impressed, he told his father, " Tubbs really leveled with me." Said Bill, "Son, he didn't level with you unless he told you something he didn't like about the place. No place is perfect." Glynn's Uncle Rosco said, "If you go to Oklahoma, I'll travel 500 miles just to stand on the sidelines and sing The Eyes of Texas Are Upon You."
Finally, Glynn narrowed his choice down to Oklahoma, Texas, Baylor or Southern Methodist. Baseball scouts advised him to choose Texas, where he could get big league preparation from Coach Bibb Falk; his mother and girl friend plumped for Baylor because of the family's Baptist background. When the day of decision came, each school had a representative at the ready in Abilene. The confused, worried youngster turned to his father for advice. "Daddy, where do you want me to go?" he asked. His father: "Son, that's the same question you asked me an hour ago and I'm giving the same answer: make up your own mind"
Glynn went back to work at his father's filling station and there decided he would go to Baylor. Before he had a chance to act on that decision, SMU Coach Bill Meek drove up. Glynn was washing a car at the time and the SMU coach talked to him for a long time about the advantages of the Dallas institution. Since the very beginning, Meek had been one of Glynn's most persistent suitors—so much so that in the weeks of this long courtship Meek saw his 2�-month-old daughter a scant three times. Now he finally convinced Glynn to sign a letter of intent with SMU. The long manhunt had ended.
Glynn's decision was based upon a thoughtful appraisal of the career of another great Texas athlete—SMU's Doak Walker. Walker has made a tidy fortune through the friendships he built up as an All-America at Southern Methodist. "If I ever get that good," Glynn says, "there isn't any limit to what I could do as far as business contacts go."
Thinking back over the wild rush period, one meal stood out in Glynn's mind. On the way to the Dallas airport after a visit to SMU, Glynn and a teammate stopped at a drive-in hamburger hut. Each had a hamburger, and they paid the check themselves. "That was the best meal we've had in months," says Glynn. "We've eaten things we couldn't even pronounce the names of, but that plain old hamburger, with no strings attached, was the best-tasting thing we had."