Remembering Coach Hale's kindness

Coach Clovis Hale speaks to his players during his time as an assistant coach at the University of Texas at Austin. Hale died in an auto accident in Spicewood July 2 and funeral services were held Friday, July 8, in Loraine in Mitchell County.

 By Lew K. Cohn 




A rough Fourth of July weekend got a lot sadder when I learned that former UT offensive line coach Clovis Hale died in a one-vehicle accident in Spicewood last weekend. 
Coach Hale was in his first year as an assistant on the Forty Acres in 1987 when he agreed to be interviewed by an awkward 17-year-old for a high school newspaper, The Anderson Edition. 
The subject for the interview was scouting high school football players and I was trying to do something different that would make my sports section stand out. 
Coach Hale could have told me he didn’t have time, being a busy man on one of the nation’s premier college sports teams, but he humored me and answered my questions. 
He even got permission for us to shoot a photo at practice, which our photo editor made to look like it was taken through binoculars, which was one of the tools of trade for assistant coaches when they would go on scouting trips to high school football games. 
The story received some attention from my classmates and from people in my profession. 
UT Sports Director Bill Little even invited me to a Texas sportswriting conference the school was putting together in conjunction with the journalism department at the college for high school writers. 
I began to realize this was what I wanted to do as my profession because I enjoyed it so much. Coach Hale was one of several people who along the way helped me get to where I am today. 
I didn’t get to see Coach Hale again after he left UT in 1991, but I learned he later would return to Texas Tech, where he previously coached. He had also coached at Iowa, North Texas and Rice. 
I had not known he was living in Spicewood after his retirement until news broke about his death. Had I known, perhaps I could have visited him to repay some of the kindness he showed me all those years ago. I will regret that. 
RIP Coach. If anyone has earned their eternal rest, I believe it's you.
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