Designed to become a regular feature of the championship game weekend, a player or coach from each Big 12 institution will be honored. Legend activities include a Friday night reception, participation in the Big 12 GameDay fan festival, and on-field introduction.
Each school selected its Legends representative. Stories on the Legends will be posted during a 12-part series that will appear on Big12Sports.com starting Sunday, November 23.
The 2008 Big 12 Legends are:
Grant Teaff - Baylor University
Head Coach - 1972-1992
Perhaps no individual is as responsible for advancing the cause of Baylor football as legendary head coach Grant Teaff. Teaff was hired to coach Baylor's program in 1972 when many people said the Bears should drop out of Division I. When the final gun sounded on the 1992 John Hancock Bowl - Teaff's last game as a head coach - he had accomplished one of the most distinguished coaching careers in history. Teaff finished his career 170-151-8 overall in 30 years as a head coach. He was 128-105-6 at Baylor, 83-74-4 in the Southwest Conference and 4-4 in bowl games. He was named SWC Coach of the Year six times and national coach of the year once. Teaff currently heads the American Football Coaches Association as the organization's executive director. The AFCA is widely recognized as the game's driving force in terms of promotions, legislative matters, ethics and professional standards.
Joel Klatt - University of Colorado
Quarterback - 2002-2005
CU's starting quarterback for his sophomore through senior seasons, he set 44 school records in his tenure, and the second-most records ever set by one student-athlete at the school in any sport. He earned All-Big 12 Honorable Mention honors as a sophomore and senior and had 34 career starts, which led to him to take over almost every major career passing record at the school: 7,375 passing yards, 44 touchdowns, 60.8 completion percentage, 1,095 attempts, 666 completions and 33 interceptions. The only ones to escape him were total offense (second with 7,255) and passer rating, where he finished seventh. He also set a school record with nine career fourth quarter comebacks. He had 15 career 200-yard passing games, five of which exceeded 300 yards. For his career, he had a 24-to-2 ratio of touchdowns to interceptions in the red zone, taking just one sack. He was selected as the newcomer of the year in the state for 2003 by the Colorado Chapter of the National Football Foundation and College Football Hall of Fame and was named the 2005-06 winner of CU's Male Career Athletic Achievement Award.
Matt Blair - Iowa State University
Linebacker - 1971, 1973
Matt Blair was one of the greatest defensive players in Cyclone history. A two-year letter winner who played on Iowa State's 1971 Sun Bowl team, Blair was named the game's most outstanding defensive player despite ISU's loss. After sitting out the 1972 season with a knee injury, he rebounded with a fine senior campaign in 1973. Blair earned All-America honors, tallying 77 tackles, one interception and three fumble recoveries. He was invited to play in the Hula Bowl, East-West Shrine Game and the Senior Bowl. Following his senior season, he was drafted in the second round of the NFL draft by the Minnesota Vikings. His stellar professional career included six Pro Bowls and two Super Bowl appearances. Blair's accolades include being named the Vikings' Man of the Year. He ended his career as the Vikings' most prolific defender, owning career marks for tackles and interceptions. He also held the NFL record for blocked kicks.
John Hadl - University of Kansas
Quarterback/Halfback/Punter/Defensive Back - 1959-1961
John Hadl easily represents one of the greatest all-around performers in Kansas history. The Jayhawks' first two-time All-America selection, Hadl excelled in the Jayhawk offense as a quarterback and part-time halfback. He was also a highly effective defensive back, return specialist and one of the nation's top punters during his three-year career. His No. 21 jersey is one of just three retired in Kansas football history. A three-time all-conference selection, Hadl ended his career with 1,281 yards passing and 1,016 yards rushing. He still holds the school record for longest punt (94 yards vs. Oklahoma in 1959) and has the third-longest interception return (98 yards vs. TCU in 1959). Hadl led the nation in punting in 1959 with a 45.6 average. The Jayhawks were a combined 14-5-2 his junior and senior seasons with Hadl at the controls and ranked nationally in the top 20 each year. He concluded his senior campaign by leading KU to a 33-7 win over Rice in the Bluebonnet Bowl. Hadl enjoyed a 16-year career in the NFL, passing for 33,513 yards. He was recognized as the NFL Man of the Year in 1971, was the named the NFC's most valuable player in 1973 and was inducted into the College Football Hall of Fame in 1994. Following a successful career in coaching, Hadl moved into administration and currently serves as Associate Athletic Director in charge of major gifts, where he works closely with the Williams Educational Fund in seeking donors for special athletics department projects at the University of Kansas.
Bill Snyder - Kansas State University
Head Coach - 1989-2005
Named the 32nd head football coach at Kansas State on Nov. 30, 1988, Snyder was considered the architect of the "greatest turnaround in the history of college football." He amassed a 136-68-1 record with the Wildcats, including a 75-53-1 mark in Big Eight and Big 12 games. Snyder took over a Wildcat team in the midst of a 0-26-1 run and in 51 seasons (1938-1988), K-State had only totaled 130 wins, while the 12 head coaches prior to Snyder's arrival combined to win just 116 games from 1945-1988. He was named the national coach of the year in 1991, 1994 and 1998. He was also voted by his peers as conference coach of the year five times. Snyder finished his career ranked seventh in career winning percentage and 12th in career victories. Over his final 13 years, the Wildcats were even better, posting a 118-42-1 record from 1993-2005 for the fifth-best overall record in Division I-A during that span. Kansas State is also one of just eight programs in the country to appear in a bowl game in 11 of the past 13 seasons and became just the second program in the history of college football to win 11 games in six of seven seasons (1997-2003). His teams were perennially ranked among the nation's elite, including achieving the program's first No. 1 ranking in November 1998. His teams finished 11 of his final 13 seasons ranked in the Associated Press Top 20, including a six-year stretch during which K-State finished each season in the Top 10. The 14th-fastest coach in the history of college football to win 100 games, Snyder coached 33 AP All-Americans and produced 42 NFL Draft picks.
John Kadlec - University of Missouri
Known affectionately as "Mr. Mizzou," John Kadlec began his association with the University of Missouri in 1947 as a football protégé of legendary Coach Don Faurot. A native of St. Louis, Mo., Kadlec learned the game of football under Faurot and lettered from 1948-50 and received All-Conference honors. Since then, he has served the University as a coach, administrator, fundraiser and broadcaster - and virtually everything else in between. He began his coaching career in 1951 and coached under Hall of Fame coaches Faurot, Frank Broyles and Dan Devine, as well as Tiger legend Al Onofrio. Kadlec has been part of several of the top teams in Tiger history, including the 1949 and 1969 squads, and has been involved as a player, coach and broadcaster in 12 of MU's 24 bowl games. His many honors include being the recipient of the Don Faurot Distinguished American Award, induction into the University of Missouri Intercollegiate Athletics Hall of Fame in 1996, and induction into the Missouri Sports Hall of Fame in 2005. In 2005, the football practice fields were named "Kadlec Athletic Fields" in his honor. As MU's chief recruiter in the vital St. Louis area, he was responsible for virtually all of the top prospects in the St. Louis area calling Mizzou their home. Kadlec's love for Mizzou is surpassed only by his love for his bride of 55 years, Dolly, and their four children and four grandchildren. Based on his dedication to this school, it is only fitting that the practice fields bear his name.
Will Shields - University of Nebraska
Offensive Guard - 1989-1992
One of a long line of outstanding offensive linemen at Nebraska, Will Shields became the fifth Husker to win the Outland Trophy, capturing the prestigious award following the 1992 season. A consensus All-American and a Lombardi Award semifinalist as a senior, Shields helped the Huskers win national team rushing titles in three of his four seasons at Nebraska (1989, 1991 and 1992). He is one of only six Husker linemen to earn all-conference honors for three straight seasons. Shields' No. 75 was retired at the 1994 Spring Game, along with Butkus Award winner Trev Alberts' No. 34 and the No. 75 jersey of former Outland Trophy winner Larry Jacobson. Following his collegiate career, Shields was selected by the Kansas City Chiefs in the third round of the 1993 NFL Draft. He spent 14 seasons as one of the most dominant offensive linemen in the NFL until retiring after the 2006 season. Shields earned a spot in 11 Pro Bowls and started more than 200 straight games in his brilliant professional career. He is the co-founder of the Will to Succeed Foundation with his wife, Senia. The foundation was organized to guide, inspire and improve the lives of abused and neglected women and children. For his remarkable work with charitable and a community organization, Shields was named the NFL Man of the Year in 2003.
Lee Roy Selmon - University of Oklahoma
Defensive Right End - 1972-1975
Part of probably the most famous set of brothers in OU history, Lee Roy Selmon and his brothers gave Oklahoma one of the greatest defenses in history. Selmon was named a consensus All-American in 1975 and also in 1974 by Newspaper Enterprise Association. His long list of achievements includes the Vince Lombardi Award, Outland Trophy, National Football Foundation Scholar-Athlete, CoSIDA Academic All-American and Graduate Fellowship Winner National Football Foundation and College Football Hall of Fame. After one of the greatest careers in college football history, Selmon was the first player taken in the 1976 draft by the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. He was inducted into the National Football Foundation Hall of Fame in 1988. In 1994 he became the first Sooner to be inducted into the CoSIDA Academic Hall of Fame, and in 1995 he became the first Sooner to be enshrined in the NFL Hall of Fame.
Derrel Gofourth - Oklahoma State University
Center - 1974-1976
One of the most decorated offensive linemen in OSU history, Derrel Gofourth anchored the Oklahoma State offensive lines from 1974 through 1976. Twice chosen as an All-Big Eight performer (1975-76), Gofourth captured consensus All-America honors in 1976 when he helped lead Oklahoma State to a share of the Big Eight title. Gofourth played in four all-star games, including the Blue-Gray Game, Hula Bowl, Senior Bowl and the Japan Bowl. He was a seventh-round selection of the Green Bay Packers in 1977. The Parsons, Kan., native spent six seasons with the Packers before moving on to the San Diego Chargers in 1983 and 1984.
Priest Holmes - University of Texas
Running Back - 1992 -1996
Holmes played in the final seven games of the 1992 season as a true freshman and finished with 34 carries for 191 yards. He won USA Today Fabulous Freshman honorable mention honors. As a junior he started five of 12 games, rushing 120 times for 524 yards and five touchdowns, but a torn ACL during spring practice forced him to sit out the 1995 season. As a senior in 1996, Holmes had 59 carries for 324 yards with 13 TDs, the sixth highest single-season TD total in school history. He ended the year with 120 yards rushing and three TDs in a Big 12 Championship game upset over third-ranked Nebraska. Holmes finished his career at Texas with 252 carries for 1,276 yards and 20 scores. After not being selected in the NFL Draft, he vowed to work his way into the Baltimore staring line-up. He suited up for seven games in 1997 and touched the ball once. The following year, Holmes saw more action when he rushed 233 times for 1,008 yards with seven TDs, becoming the first Ravens rusher to top the 1,000-yard barrier. He started in Super Bowl XXXV against the New York Giants with the Ravens winning, 34-7. Holmes signed with the Kansas City Chiefs as an unrestricted free agent in 2001 and finished the '01 campaign with the NFL rushing title. He became the first player in Chiefs history to break the 1,000-yard rushing plateau in back-to-back seasons. He also had three Pro Bowl appearances while with Kansas City.
John David Crow - Texas A&M University
Halfback - 1955-1957
One of the most decorated collegiate athletes in Texas A&M history, Crow is the only Aggie Heisman Trophy winner (1957), as well as the only Heisman winner in Coach Paul "Bear" Bryant's illustrious career. A consensus All-America selection he was named the top performer in college football by Sport Magazine and was selected to the College All-Star Team. He also played 11 seasons in the NFL. Crow was a first-round selection of the Chicago Cardinals in the 1958 NFL draft and went on to star and serve as a team captain for the Cardinals and the San Francisco 49ers. A four-time selection to the Pro Bowl, he was named to the All-Pro team of the 1960's as a halfback. After his NFL career, he went into coaching and served as an assistant coach at the University of Alabama, then as an assistant coach with the Cleveland Browns and San Diego Chargers and Athletics Director and Head Football Coach at Northeast Louisiana University. Crow served as Associate Athletic Director (1983-88) at Texas A&M University before being named the Athletics Director (1988-93), and served as Director of Athletic Development from 1993 until retiring from the University in June 2001. He is a member of the National Football Foundation Hall of Fame; Texas A&M Athletic Hall of Fame and Texas Sports Hall of Fame.
E.J. Holub - Texas Tech University
Center - 1958-1960
E.J. Holub finished his career at Texas Tech as the first two-time All-American and All-Southwest Conference selection (1959-1960). During his career at Tech he played linebacker and center. He was the first-round draft pick by the Dallas Texans in 1961 and went on to an 11-year NFL career playing for the Dallas Texans and Kansas City Chiefs. He is credited as being the only player in NFL history to start two Super Bowls at two different positions, and the only player in NFL history to start two Super Bowls on opposite sides of the line of scrimmage (Super Bowl I at linebacker and in Super Bowl IV at center). Holub was inducted in to the Texas Tech Athletic Hall of Honor in 1977 and the National Football Foundation College Football Hall of Fame in 1986. He is also a member of the Kansas City Chiefs Hall of Fame.