Long-time women's athletics supporter Bradley Davis to turn 100
Feb. 21, 2009
Janice Lu, Texas Media Relations
Sometimes age has a way of slowing people down. In other instances, age is just a minor detail. For Longhorns super-fan Bradley Davis, it took 100 years before age finally kept him from attending University of Texas athletic events.
Yes, 100 years.
Davis has never camped out for a segment of ESPN "College GameDay." Nor has he ever painted his whole body burnt orange. Yet, he can still be considered one of the most devoted and diehard Orange Bloods ever, having spent almost 80 years worth of time and money to cheer on the Longhorns.
"I needed something to do and I liked ball games, so the two kind of fit together," Davis joked.
Having faithfully followed the Longhorns ever since he was a student in the 1930s, Davis became a fixture at many games, in particular women's basketball and volleyball. There, he also would snap photos of the athletes. After developing the shots, Davis would share the best ones with the coaches and players.
"He has to have taken the most photographs related to Texas Athletics by any person, including (UT staff photographer) Susan Sigmon, because that was his thing. He took pictures and periodically he would give me dozens of pictures for my collections," former women's basketball head coach Jody Conradt said. "All the players knew him, and I'm sure every one of them eventually had a Bradley Davis-taken photograph in their scrapbooks."
In addition, Davis was always trying to share his love for the Horns with fellow fans. As he got older and became unable to drive, Davis would buy a ticket in exchange for a ride to the games. While at the games, Davis made all kinds of friends from the fans to the players, head coaches and athletic directors.
"Bradley was the most long-term fan that we've had. I don't remember going to a basketball game that he wasn't sitting by the tunnel," Conradt said. "He was the best kind of supporter in that he got to know the players personally. You could go all the way back to the first women's basketball teams, and all our players would remember the wonderful gentleman that always spoke to them and gave them pictures."
"To say Bradley was a dedicated fan does not do him justice," Women's Athletic Director Chris Plonsky echoed. "He epitomizes the persona of early 'Lady Longhorns followers' -- folks who wore head-to-toe burnt orange before it truly became standard operating procedure."
While this year marks the first time Davis has been unable to attend any events, as he is currently residing at the Hill Country Care Center, his passion for the Burnt Orange is still alive.
"Bradley is a sprite of a man," Plonsky added. "But his spirit for UT is enormous."