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Former Texas A&M Head Football Coach RC Slocum diagnosed with cancer

Updated: Jun. 22, 2021 at 1:22 PM CDT
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BRYAN-COLLEGE STATION, Texas -- Former Texas A&M head football coach R.C. Slocum, following out-patient tests at M.D. Anderson Hospital in Houston, has been diagnosed with a form of Hodgkin’s lymphoma. He will require chemotherapy and will undergo that at Baylor Scott and White Hospital in College Station in consultation with M.D. Anderson.

Slocum had the following to say about his diagnosis, “I have been so encouraged by the outpouring of love, prayers, and support from friends everywhere. I have great medical support and I will get started on this challenge as soon as possible. I have a strong faith and will trust for a positive outcome.”

R.C. Slocum is the winningest football coach in Texas A&M history with an overall record of 123-47-2 in 14 years. He was named to the National Football Foundation Hall of Fame in 2012.

At the time of his 100th win, Slocum had reached that milestone quicker than any other active head coach. Slocum reached the mark in his eighth game of his 11th season, while Joe Paterno had reached 100 wins in the ninth game of his 11th year. The 14 years as an Aggie head coach tied Slocum with Homer Norton, a member of the College Football Hall of Fame, for the longest head coaching tenure in A&M history and Slocum’s combined 30 years (16 as an assistant coach at Texas A&M) is the longest football coaching tenure in school history.

Slocum stacked the trophy case with six championships which included three consecutive Southwest Conference crowns (1991-92-93), two Big 12 South Championships (1997-98) in the first three years of the league’s existence, as well as hoisting the 1998 Big 12 Championship banner by defeating the nation’s top-ranked team, Kansas State, in double overtime.

In the decade of the 1990′s, Slocum compiled 94 victories which were the most by any Division I football program in the state of Texas at that time. The Aggies compiled an undefeated record of 10-0-1 for the best record in the SWC in 1994 despite not being eligible for another title. It marked the first Aggie unbeaten season since Coach Paul “Bear” Bryant and the Texas A&M football team of 1956 finished 9-0-1.

Slocum was a finalist for National Coach of the Year in 1994 and was the league Coach of the Year on four occasions. Texas A&M played in 11 bowl games in Slocum’s 14 years and five of those were New Year’s Day bowl games. The Aggies would finish in the Associated Press Top 25 on 10 occasions and finished among the nation’s Top 10 three times.

The Aggies were especially tough to beat at Kyle Field winning 85 percent of the games played in College Station accumulating a 67-11-1 (.854) home record. During Slocum’s tenure, the Aggies compiled a 29-game unbeaten streak (1990-95) as well as a 22-game unbeaten streak (1996-2000) at Kyle Field.

As Texas A&M closed out the Southwest Conference football era, Slocum’s SWC winning percentage of .865 (44-6-2) stands atop the record books ahead of legendary Texas head coach Darrell Royal’s .797 percentage. Royal and the Longhorns won 21 straight league games from 1968-71 to establish a record, but Slocum’s Aggie teams from 1991-93 broke that mark by winning 22 straight including the record-breaker against Texas, 18-9, in 1993.

A member of the Texas A&M Athletic Hall of Fame and the Texas Sports Hall of Fame, Slocum had 64 players drafted by the NFL including eight first-round selections.

Born in Louisiana and raised in Orange, Texas, Slocum was a tight end at McNeese State University and was honored by his alma mater as a Distinguished Alumnus.

Slocum is currently a Special Assistant to Texas A&M President Dr. M. Katherine Banks and also serves on the College Football Playoff selection committee. He previously served as interim athletics director at Texas A&M from April 2019 until July of 2019 when Ross Bjork was named Director of Athletics.

Slocum is married to the former Nel Jennings. Slocum has two sons, Shawn and John Harvey, both are Aggie graduates.