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Dallas A&M Club

Saturday, April 21, 2012, 5:00 PM

Gilley's Dallas
1135 South Lamar Street
Dallas, TX 75215


Contact Information
Corey Nichols '07


Please join us for one of Texas A&M University’s most treasured traditions as our distinguished guest speaker, Gary Blair, addresses local-area Aggies, family, and friends at the Dallas Aggie Muster!

5:00pm - Check-in, Cash Bar Reception 
5:15pm - Dinner 
6:00pm - Muster Program

Discounted advance purchase tickets: $12.00
At the door/night of the event: $20.00

Above ticket pricing includes dinner by Gilley’s Dallas and parking in the surface lot adjacent to Gilley’s Dallas. Please note that these discounted tickets will be available for purchase until 8:00pm on April 20.

Significant day-of-event sales are expected at the door; so please consider purchasing your tickets in advance. While no one will be turned away, please also be aware that food and seating are limited; and all seats are available on a first-come, first-seated basis.

Contact Corey Nichols ‘07 via or 214-600-4446 with questions on tickets.

Roll Call for the Absent

If you would like to add a family member to the roll call or have any questions regarding the ceremony, please contact Corey Nichols ‘07 via or 214-600-4446.

Speaker Biography

Gary Blair’s legacy has impacted hundreds of athletes and thousands of people. Coach Blair’s tireless commitment to his athletes, basketball, and equality has made him one of the most respected coaches in nation. A native of Dallas, Texas, Blair grew up playing baseball at Bryan Adams High School where he was an all-city centerfielder. In 1969 Blair received his U.S. Army draft notice and decided to enlist in the U.S. Marine Corps. After completing a four-year tour of duty, he used his GI bill to earn his bachelor’s degree in health and physical education with a minor in journalism from Texas Tech, also playing a year of baseball for the Red Raiders.

After his graduation from Texas Tech, Blair was offered the physical education coaching job at South Oak Cliff High School in Dallas. South Oak Cliff had just started its women’s basketball program, and Blair became the team’s first coach. In his seven seasons at South Oak Cliff, he set a state record with five consecutive state tournament appearances and a 239-18 record.  His teams won three State Class 4A Championships, in 1977, 1978, and 1980. In October 1980, Blair was offered an assistant coaching job at Louisiana Tech and eventually accepted it.  During his five seasons there, Louisiana Tech reached the Final Four in the NCAA Tournament four times, winning a national Championship.

Blair’s first head coaching experience at the collegiate level came at Stephen F. Austin University in Nacogdoches, Texas. His teams won seven straight conference championships, and appeared in the NCAA Tournament six times.  During his last six seasons, his teams were consistently ranked in the final AP Top 25 polls. Blair left Stephen F. Austin to coach at the University of Arkansas in 1993. The following year his team, which consisted of 9 freshmen and sophomores, reached the second round of the NCAA Tournament.  In the summer of 1996, while his Arkansas team was in their offseason, Blair spent several months in Taiwan as the assistant coach of the U.S. Jones Cup team, which won the gold medal and became the first U.S. team to go undefeated at the Jones Cup tournament.  Blair made history with his 1997-1998 Arkansas team.  The team, unranked in the national polls, received a number 9 seed for the NCAA Tournament and reached the NCAA Final Four, an unprecedented occurrence.

Blair came to Texas A&M in 2003 taking over a team which had not had a winning season in seven years.  In his first season with Texas A&M, Blair worked hard to attract fans to the women’s basketball games, and by the end of the season attendance had increased 71 percent over the previous year, the best increase in the Big 12. The following year the Aggies earned a postseason invitation for the first time since 1996. In his third season with the Aggies, Blair guided his team to their first Associated Press Top 25 ranking in a decade.  That year Blair became only the fourth coach in NCAA history to take three different schools to the NCAA Tournament. Overall, in his first three years as the head coach of the Aggies, A&M home attendance increased 156%. On February 20, 2008, Blair posted his 500thcareer win as a head coach at Reed Arena. In the 2007-08 season, Blair led his squad to a school-first NCAA Elite Eight appearance, and also won the Big 12 conference tournament title. On March 29, 2011, Blair led the program to its first ever Final Four appearance by defeating Baylor. On April 3, 2011 the Aggies defeated top-seeded Stanford to advance to the national title game. And on April 5, 2011, the Aggies defeated Notre Dame in the championship game to win the tournament for the first time in school history.

In addition to basketball, Blair is actively involved with the community. He has been a member of Rotary International for more than 20 years. He has also held his “Celebrity Golf Classic” to benefit Special Olympics for over 15 years; recently, the program has raised over $100,000 annually. 

Blair is married to Dr. Nan Smith-Blair, an associate professor and director of the University of Arkansas’ Eleanor Mann School of Nursing. The two met when Blair was coaching at South Oak Cliff High School. The couple has two children name Paige and Matt, as well as two grandchildren named Logan and Lola.

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