Davidson, Cotton 1999-02-02

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Cotton Davidson, a resident of Gatesville, Texas, discusses his experiences as both a professional and college football player. He also talks about his career in coaching and the training methods he used.

General Interview Information

Interviewee Name: Cotton Davidson (Francis Marion Davidson)

Additional Parties Recorded:

Date: February 2, 1999

Location: Gatesville, Texas

Interviewer: David Marshall

Length: 1 hour


Tape 1, Side 1: b. 1931, Gatesville, Texas, Background, Four children, Birth name – Francis Marion Davidson, Wife: Carolyn Maybre – Brekenridge, Texas, Children’s present careers, Football, Jr. High – High School – Gatesville, Texas, Rice – signed with Rice, but changed his mind, Baylor University, Freshman football, Sophomore – defense, Junior & Senior – Quarterback, Senior – new rule, everyone had to play both defense & offense, Type of game played, Southwest Conference, Officials – 1950’s, Conflicts between coaches and officials, Calls, Opinions, School spirit level at games – compared 1950’s to today, Obligations to fans, Career, Graduated – 1954, 1st round draft pick, History of Baltimore Colts, Opinion on Colts leaving Baltimore, Baltimore Colts, Exhibition Game – sold out, 70-80 thousand stadium seating, Opinion on the demise of the Southwest Conference, Lloyd Mitchell, High School coach, Big influence, Donated spurs to Texas Tech University Museum, Football (again), Backgrounds of players in Gatesville High School and Baylor University, Lloyd Mitchell (again), Football player and track runner in the 1920’s, Baylor University (again), Coach, Offense plays, Type of passing game, Career (again), Played with Baltimore until military service, Military service: 1955 – 1956, All army quarterback, Johnny Unitis, Roomed together: 1957 – 1958, Personality, Coaches throughout playing career, Career (again), Injury – 1958, Began coaching - 1959, Installed Baltimore offense at Baylor, Returned to playing in 1960 in the American League Description of Baltimore offense at Baylor University

Tape 1, Side 2: Dallas, Texas – professional football, Comparison between Dallas and Baltimore, Coaching methods, Training, Meetings, Practice, Curfew, Schedule, Discipline – fines system, Could not miss practice, Controlled situation, Similar to a job, Career (again), Left Dallas – 1962, Oakland – 1962 – 1969, Al Davis – Head Coach, Players on the field called most of the plays, Situation calls – coach would make, Adjustments, Hash marks, Film viewing, Weight Training, First weight program – 1962, Al Davis, Weights were outdoors, Consisted of five stations, Mandatory, Billy Camp – changed philosophy of weight training for football, John Madden, Assistant Coach, Head Coach, Good speaker, E.J. Hollum, American Football League – 1961, Attended Lubbock High School, Owned a ranch near Paris, Texas, Background, Bulldog Turner, Grew up near Sweetwater, Texas, Died: October 20, 1998, Inducted into five different football Halls of Fame, Characteristics, Rough, Rugged, Demanding, Football Career – 1940 – 1952, Baylor University – Offensive Coach, Bears Coach – 1954, First face mask – 1954, Single bar, Plastic helmet, Bulldog Turner (again), Family ranch near Gatesville, Texas, Retired -1958, Returned to Chicago, Ill. – public relations for a steel company, Characteristics, Retirement, Gatesville – owned an oil company for 2 years, Started coaching again, Lake house at Opossum Kingdom – enjoys fishing, Owned a ranch in Gatesville, Texas, Goats, Sheep, Problems with wolves and wild dogs, Cows, Located Natural terrain of ranch, Problems with artillery practice, Fort Hood
Range Dates: 1931-1999

Bulk Dates: 1950-1999

Access Information

Original Recording Format:

Recording Format Notes:


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