Friends, colleagues remember coach Dykes

Spike Dykes waves to fans during a Texas Tech football game at then-Jones Stadium. Dykes made an impact on many of the people with whom he interacted.

Spike Dykes, head coach of the Texas Tech football team from 1986-1999, was known around campus and around the Lubbock community for his football knowledge and his leadership of the football team. But, fellow faculty members, administrators and friends knew Dykes not only as a coach but also as a person who cared about the people with whom he interacted.

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“Spike was a really great man. He was warm, sincere and genuine. We both grew up in West Texas. So we both talk the same way and said the same types of things. He was always a friend of the Texas Tech band.

“I think he put Texas Tech football on the map. He was a genuine friend of the university. He loved Texas Tech University. He made deep and lasting relationships with everyone there and with everyone he came into contact with.”

— Keith Bearden

Former director of the Goin’ Band from Raiderland and professor emeritus

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“He was easy to work with, he knew quality. We never ever had a problem athletically and that was important. Because, I told him, I said, ‘We’re going to run a straight-forward program.’... He understood that and he and I could really communicate, and he made my life so much easier ... I could not have asked for a better person to represent Texas Tech than Spike Dykes. He was a winner all the way.”

— Lauro Cavazos

10th president of Texas Tech University

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“I think he had more people that considered him his best friend than anybody I’ve ever known. And he was a best friend to every one of them, that’s just the way he was.”

— Kent Hance

Chancellor emeritus of the Texas Tech University System

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“To know him was to love him and he obviously felt the same way about people. That’s why everyone liked him is because he loved them.”

— Bill Little

Former sports information director for the University of Texas

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“Spike was so humble and honest that he never went to a smartphone, he just kept a flip phone and a landline, and he always answered the phone. He took every phone call. He always spoke with frankness but with sincerity and sympathy. He was the most loyal man that I’ve come across. He always maintained that you should be loyal to your wife, your family, your school and your country.”

— Weldon Killough

Friend of Dykes’ and a retired educator from Clovis, New Mexico

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