I called Bum Phillips on September 29 to wish him a happy birthday. “Hey, any of them you have are happy,” he responded in a lazy East Texas drawl. Phillips told me he was 87 years old. “I don’t wanna be, but I am,” he Laughed. “Born in 1923. I figured it several ways, and it always comes out 87.” We got to talking about Bum’s new book, “Bum Phillips: Coach, Cowboy, Christian,” and how he got to writing it. He and his wife Debbie got the idea to do it when they realized the grandkids really didn’t know who their grandfather was and what he had done. Phillips has 23 grandchildren and another on the way. “It was really more for my grandkids because they didn’t have any idea what I did when I was young. Of course when I was born they still had horse and buggies and stuff like that.”

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