Former Ole Miss, Texas Coach Dies

OLEMISSSPORTSDOTCOM Former Ole Miss football player<br>Mike Campbell passes away.
OLEMISSSPORTSDOTCOM
Former Ole Miss football player
Mike Campbell passes away.
OLEMISSSPORTSDOTCOM

June 17, 1998

AUSTIN, TX -- Former Ole Miss football player Mike Campbell, 76, who spent half his life as an employee of The University of Texas Athletics Department, died early Tuesday morning from complications of lymphoma.

Born in Knox County, Tenn., on May 9, 1922, Campbell was a coach, teacher, father, patriot and friend.

As an assistant coach to Darrell Royal at Texas, Campbell served 20 years as the chief architect of one of the hallmark defenses in the history of college football. As a teacher, he built his program on solid individual fundamentals and a sound plan of attack.

Campbell, who grew up in Memphis, Tenn., and was Captain of the Central High football team, enrolled at The University of Mississippi in 1942 as a freshman member of Harry Mehre's football squad.

Following his freshman year at Ole Miss, he became a B-24 pilot during World War II, flying 50 bombing missions, including attacks over the Ploesti oil fields in Romania, which supplied one third of Nazi Germany's oil. He was awarded the Air Medal and three clusters.

Following his time in the service, he returned to Ole Miss and was on the Rebel football squad for the 1945 and 1946 seasons. He finished his college degree at The University of Mississippi in 1947. During his senior year, he married an Ole Miss sophomore named Mary Hearn, a partnership that would last for over 50 years.

Campbell started his life in coaching soon after college, becoming highly successful in the Mississippi High School ranks at Gulf Coast Military Academy, Canton, and Vicksburg. His success and his popularity with other high school coaches caught the eye of Royal, who was a young college assistant coach and then head coach at Mississippi State in 1955.

When Royal moved to Washington for the 1956 season, Campbell joined his staff. It was a union that would bring unparalleled success in college football.

In 1957, Royal took the head coaching job at Texas, and Campbell was part of the package. The Longhorns over the next 20 years would win three national championships, 11 league titles and establish a 30-game winning streak -- the longest mark in recent NCAA history.

Campbell was Royal's chief scout and end coach in the days of single platoon football, and he took over the linebackers as two-platoon football became popular during the early 1960s.

In 1967, he was placed in charge of the Longhorn defense, and in 1974 was named assistant head coach.

When Fred Akers was named Texas' head coach after Royal retired following the 1976 season, Campbell chose to leave the coaching profession -- and UT -- but that didn't last long.

He worked four years for the Texas Teacher Retirement System, but in 1980 became head of The Texas Longhorn Education Foundation, a non-profit group that raised money to supplement athletic scholarships for the UT Men's Athletics Department. It was a role he would fill until his death.

Not only did he run the "200 'Horns" Centennial Room at Texas home games, he remained an active supporter of all Longhorn sports.

As a Texas coach, Campbell tutored seven all-Americans and 43 all-Southwest Conference performers.

Campbell's three sons--twins Mike and Tom and younger brother Rusty--all played at Texas. Tom and Mike were members of the 1969 National Champion team, and Rusty was on the team in 1970 and 1971.

As a friend and a teacher, Campbell used a dry wit and a twinkle in his eye to make a point. He continued to fly, taking Royal and staff members on recruiting trips, and he enjoyed golf. In 1984, he was named to the Longhorn Hall of Honor.

He was honored this spring by new head football coach Mack Brown with the First annual Mike Campbell Letterman's Golf Tournament. The Trophy Room in the remodeled Moncrief-Neuhaus football support facility at Darrell K. Royal Texas Memorial Stadium will be named for Campbell and one of his former players, Bob Moses.

Survivors include his wife, Mary, and sons and daughters-in-laws Mike and Becky of The Woodlands, and Tom and Kim and Rusty and Betsy, all of Austin; a sister, Pat Rowan of Memphis, Tenn., seven grandchildren (Kate, Beth, Erin, Amy, Courtney, Michael and Collin) and numerous nieces and nephews.

Funeral services will be held Thursday at 2:00 p.m. at the Frank C. Erwin Center on The UT campus. Burial will be at Austin Memorial Park immediately following the service. The family will receive visitors at the Weed Corley-Fish Funeral Home, 3125 North Lamar in Austin from 6:00 to 8:00 p.m. on Wednesday.

Ole Miss Gear
    Facebook
    Twitter
    • Loading Tweets...
      1 second ago
    Blog
    • Ole Miss Athletics Week in Review (Aug. 25-31)

      Monday, September 1, 2014 - Athletics

      Ole Miss Athletics Week in ReviewAug. 25-31, 2014Football- No. 18 Ole Miss opened the 2014 season with a 35-13 win over Boise State in the Chick-fil-A Kickoff Game at Atlanta's Georgia Dome.- The Rebels led 7-6 entering the fourth quarter... read more

    • ESPN's Chucky Mullins Documentary to Debut Thursday

      Monday, September 1, 2014 - Football

      The SEC Storied documentary "It's Time," centered on the the inspirational friendship between former Vanderbilt football player Brad Gaines and former Ole Miss football player Chucky Mullins, will premiere on Tuesday on the Vanderbilt campus and will debut on... read more

    • Observations from the Best Seat in the House - Aug. 31

      Sunday, August 31, 2014 - Athletics

      This is a new concept we've created for the Ole Miss Sports Blog that we're calling Observations from the Best Seat in the House. The idea of this weekly feature will be to bring you all some of our observations... read more

    • What They're Saying: Ole Miss-Boise State

      Friday, August 29, 2014 - Football

      The No. 18 Ole Miss football team won the Chick-fil-A Kickoff Game defeating Boise State 35-13. The Rebels move into Southeastern Conference next week with a road test at Vanderbilt from Nashville's LP Field, home of the Tennessee Titans. The... read more

    • 'The New Normal' on Defense

      Friday, August 29, 2014 - Football

      ATLANTA -- Boise State had been the highest scoring team in the nation, averaging 40.2 points per game dating back to the 2000 season.  Highlighted by four interceptions, eight tackles for loss and big hits by several different players, the... read more

    • Second-Half Surge for Rebel Offense

      Friday, August 29, 2014 - Football

      ATLANTA -- After an up-and-down first half, which included a touchdown and three interceptions, senior quarterback Bo Wallace and the Ole Miss offense found their stride in the second half, particularly in the fourth quarter. Leading 7-6 early in the... read more

    • VIDEO: Ole Miss-Boise State Motivational

      Thursday, August 28, 2014 - Football

      Ole Miss vs Boise State Official Team Motivational '14 from Ole Miss Rebels on Vimeo.... read more

    • Three and Out: Keys to Ole Miss-Boise State

      Thursday, August 28, 2014 - Football

      Three areas to watch as Ole Miss opens its 2014 season in the Chick-fil-A Kickoff Game against Boise State from Atlanta's Georgia Dome. Contrast in Experience Boise State has one of the youngest teams in the country with 67 freshmen... read more

    • Volleyball Opens Steven McRoberts Era

      Wednesday, August 27, 2014 - Volleyball

      Here are three pieces to keep in mind as we look ahead to the Ole Miss volleyball team's season-opening weekend in Buffalo, New York, starting with Canisius on Friday morning, the first of four matches over three days at the... read more

    • The Season: Ole Miss Football Episode 1

      Wednesday, August 27, 2014 - Football

      The Season: Ole Miss Football - Episode 1 (2014) from Ole Miss Rebels on Vimeo.... read more

    • Dome, Sweet Dome for Atlanta Area Rebels

      Tuesday, August 26, 2014 - Football

      For high school football players in Georgia, all roads lead to the Georgia Dome and the state championships.  For a handful of Rebels, those roads lead home, as Ole Miss opens the 2014 season against Boise State in the Chick-fil-A... read more

    • VIDEO: Forward Together Construction Update

      Monday, August 25, 2014 - Athletics

      read more

    • Relentless is the Word on Defense

      Sunday, August 24, 2014 - Football

      ESPN.com's Brett McMurphy asked each of the 65 coaches from the Power Five conferences to describe their team in one word.  Ole Miss head coach Hugh Freeze's word? Relentless. The same can be said of the Ole Miss defense.  And... read more

    • McCormick, Defense Shine in Win

      Sunday, August 24, 2014 - Soccer

      After playing 110 minutes in a 1-1 draw with Georgia on Friday night, Ole Miss responded with a gutsy 1-0 win over Iowa State on Sunday afternoon. The defense, led by senior goalkeeper Kelly McCormick was the story of the... read more

    • Rebels Battle to Draw on Historic Night

      Friday, August 22, 2014 -

      Big time crowd for @SECNetwork live sports event debut. Record attendance of 1,823 for @OleMissSoccer Let's finish strong.-- Ross Bjork (@RossBjorkAD) August 23, 2014 Ole Miss kicked off the 2014 season in thrilling fashion, rallying to a 1-1 draw with... read more