This Week in Texas Methodist History November 30
The Wikipedia entry for SMU Mustangs refers to the November 30, 1935 game against TCU as “the greatest game in SMU history.” The SMU football site ranks it as the 2nd most important event in SMU football history (behind Doak Walker’s winning the Heisman Trophy in 1948). It pitted the #1 Mustangs against the #2 Frogs. Bobby Wilson’s three touchdowns propelled SMU to a 20-14 victory against Sammy Baugh’s team from Fort Worth. The winning touchdown was a 4th down pass from a fake punt that Wilson caught on the 5 yard line and dived into the end zone.
The victory earned the Mustangs a invitation to the Rose Bowl to play Stanford University on January 1, 1936. Although SMU lost the Rose Bowl, the team brought home a check for $85,000. The university desperately needed that money to pay off the mortgage on Ownby Stadium. The pass from Bob Finley to Bobby Wilson is therefore referred to as the $85,000 pass.
Both of the stars of the game on November 30 had further connections with Texas Methodist History. Wilson was a faithful member of First United Methodist Church Beaumont where he served in a variety of leadership positions. The Methodist Home’s group home for foster children in Jayton is the Sammy Baugh Cottage.