I ran across this picture of Emmett Brunson in the Houston Post photo collection in the downtown archives last week and I fell head over heels. Just look at the look on his face! He wasn’t going to slap on a smile just because some photographer showed up. I really respect that.
Anyway, Brunson was a Rice alumnus (’29), a major part of the 1928 Southwest Conference championship track team, then long serving Rice track coach and Business Manager for the Athletics Department. They took his picture for a story that’s ostensibly about the high demand for football tickets during the 50th anniversary season of Rice football but which wanders around quite a bit in a pretty interesting way talking about Brunson himself:
Fifteen years ago when I went to clear out the ticket office before the renovation of the gym began it stilled looked like what you see in the photo. It’s hard to estimate how many old tickets were in there but ten thousand is a decent guess. I did save some, by the way, and they’re now in the Woodson’s Rice Athletics Collection.
Two other quick things about Brunson, First, that’s him two to the right of Coach Ernie Hjertberg in this picture of the 1927 track squad.
And second, when he was a sophomore he led the freshmen around downtown in the slime parade. You might not guess that from his 1961 photo.
Bonus: The aftermath.