“Kids loved him, high school coaches loved him, the media loved him,” said R.C. Slocum, the long-time Aggies coach.
“He was hard to compete against, because I loved him, too.”
What a way to be thought of.
These things are always difficult to write for me. I never knew Spike Dykes, I just admired the heck out of him as a coach and as a person. Had heard the stories and the humorous quotes from Dykes, but he was a great football coach as well. Texas Tech was a destination job for Spike Dykes and that’s as important to me as anything else.
When Spike spoke after 9/11/01 at the San Antonio Quarterback Club, made it clear that when this moment happened, there is to be no sadness:
“If anybody cries at my funeral, get ’em out of there,” Dykes said. “You talk about a guy who has cut the heart out of the watermelon – I’ve lived at the best time in the history of the world. And no matter what happened, we still live in the best generation that’s ever been.”
I can promise you Dykes is loved by R.C. Slocum, Grant Teaff, Darrell Royal, Mack Brown and any other head coach in Texas, high school or college. To be loved is to be deeply missed and Dykes will be missed.
Dykes said that the reason he coached is because he loved kids and considering the out-pouring of love and fond memories of Dykes, that was absolutely true:
“I think you coach because you love kids,” Dykes, known for his wit and West Texas charm, said early in his Tech career. “And if you do that, every day is rewarding. That way you never get your priorities out of perspective. It all boils down to the chance to work with young people, hopefully be an influence on them for the better and help them make something of themselves that is positive.”
Because this is what we do, Here are some things for you to read about Dykes.
- LAJ’s Don Williams: The right man at the right time: Spike Dykes brought Tech back to respectability
- Ryan Hyatt’s Raiderland: “The hay is in the barn.” – Remembering Spike Dykes, A Texas Tech Icon.
- UT’s Bill Little: Sharing A Loss – Memories and Mexican Food
- Times Record News’ Andy Newberry: Newberry: Former Tech players fondly remember ‘Coach’
- RRS’s Will McKay: Spike Dykes: The embodiment of West Texas and Texas Tech football
- KAMC’s David Collier: Mike Leach Shares His Thoughts on Spike Dykes
- Chron’s Mike Finger: There was much more to Spike Dykes than X’s and O’s
- 1340 The Fan: Tommy McVay Gets Choked Up Over Spike Dykes’ Death: ‘He Was One of a Kind’