The Big Mac Blog

TCU icon will miss eagerly anticipated Arkansas game

Frank Windegger, former TCU baseball coach and athletic director, at Lupton Stadium, in June of 2012. Windegger has been struggling with his health lately.
Frank Windegger, former TCU baseball coach and athletic director, at Lupton Stadium, in June of 2012. Windegger has been struggling with his health lately. rmallison@star-telegram.com

There is not a person in Fort Worth who wants to see Arkansas play against TCU in Fort Worth more than Frank Windegger, but that will not be happening.

Frank will still be able watch Frogs and Hogs on Sept. 10, but from his couch rather than the stadium.

The long time former TCU head baseball coach who was the school’s athletic director when Arkansas began the college football re-location plan by leaving the Southwest Conference in 1991, won’t be able to make it to Amon G. Carter Stadium for any game for a while.

“I’ve had over 40 operations,” Windegger said.

The most recent surgery knocked him down and he’s just not able to get around too easily these days.

Windegger, 82, recently fell and suffered a broken leg. It was only by good fortune his injuries were not considerably worse.

As he fell backwards he was able to put his hand behind his head to prevent a potentially more severe injury. Windegger was recently released from the hospital after a one month stay.

He has been struggling with his balance and he admits that he will require the use of a walker for the rest of his life.

“That’s always going to be a part of me,” he said of the walker.

Windegger is, unfortunately, a veteran at surgeries.

“Shoulders, knees, hips, back,” Windegger said. “I’ve done them all.”

Windegger sounds good, strong, and certainly game, but his priority right now is to heal and rehab.

Just watching him walk for about the last 10 years or so has been a painful endeavor; Windegger has paid a steep price for his athletic career. He had to give up golf many years ago because of his back, which he now swears functions about as well as he could hope.

That said, he would love nothing more than to be healthy enough to return to TCU to see his Horned Frogs play the Razorbacks.

The two were rivals from 1920 to 1991. The last time the two teams met was ‘91 - a 22-21 Arkansas win in Fort Worth. The Hogs lead the series 42-24-2.

“I absolutely loved it when they put them on the schedule,” he said. “They were the first to leave and it got everything started back in the ‘90s. (Former Arkansas football coach and athletic director) Frank Broyles and I were good friends and I am disappointed I won’t be able to make it. This (Saturday’s game against South Dakota State) will be one of the first times I’ve missed a game in a long time, but I’m just not able to do it yet. I’m hoping to make a game or two later this fall."

On behalf of everybody who knows Frank, we’re relieved he’s back up and running and we would like nothing more than to see him back at Amon G. Carter Stadium for a football game this fall.

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