DALLAS, Tex. (WJTV) – It’s not often head coaches leave a successful program to be an assistant somewhere else. That’s what Vic Schaefer did in 1997 when he left Sam Houston State to help with Gary Blair’s staff at Arkansas.
“I really didn’t wanna do that. We’d just had the twins. I loved my job in Huntsville. Sam Houston State was a great job, it was turning into a better job, let’s put it that way and I had a good, young team,” Schaefer said. “But, we’d just had the twins, I was $25,000 in debt, I didn’t know where the next $15.99 for that canned, powdered food was coming from and he offered me double my salary, give me a country club membership, courtesy car and $1,000 in Reebok apparel. I had to do it just to help my family.”
Schaefer also says in the back of his mind he knew being an assistant at an SEC could leave to a bigger head coaching job down the road.
That job came 15 years later at Mississippi State, but during that he was an assistant at Arkansas and Texas A&M. He won a national championship with the Aggies in 2011.
“Well there’s no doubt it prepared me. When you’re with a 6-time Hall of Famer for 15 years like I was with coach at Arkansas and Texas A&M, you know what, if you don’t learn anything shame on you,” Schaefer said.